Wednesday, June 14, 2006

'Ten dishes I miss the most' meme

Ashwini and Revathi have tagged me for this meme. We are meant to write about what we miss most of our moms' cooking. As I have mentioned here, my cooking is equally influenced by my mother and my mother-in-law. It would be unfair then, if I wrote only about my mom's cooking. Although I have a really looooooong list in my mind, I will try and restrict myself to five of my mother's dishes and five of my mother-in-law's. Let me begin then.

What I miss most of my mom's cooking:

1) Simple everyday subzis: My mother cooks a lot of different vegetables. Hardly any vegetable that is easily available in Pune's markets fails to make an appearance on the dining table, and all of them taste so good. It is thanks to her, that I have always been an 'unfussy' eater.
2) Goda Masala: This essential ingredient in Maharashtrian cooking looks rather easy to make. I have a few recipes for it too. However, my blend of Goda Masala and hence the subzis cooked with it never taste as good as my mom's.
3) Ice-cream: My mother has a simple, no-fuss method of making this without any ice-cream maker. But the kind of ice-cream she makes is divine. You should taste her mango ice-cream - smooth (no crystals whatsoever!), creamy and very mangoey. Baskin-Robbins and the likes can hang their heads in shame.
4) Gulab Jamun: jokes! All balls of the same size, with an appetizing dark-brown complexion, cooked to the centre and dunked in a wonderfully aromatic, cardamomey sugar syrup. If I am around while she makes the Gulab Jamun, I eat them in every stage : the raw dough, hot fried balls just out of the pan, Gulab Jamun still warm in the sugar syrup and Gulab Jamun well soaked in the sugar syrup. The Gulab Jamun are never seen around beyond this stage, because they are all resting in my tummy by then.
5) Puranpoli: I love her Puranpoli, and she knows it. So, if I am in town for my birthday, then everybody knows what the menu for lunch/dinner would be. Well, this year too I will not have that pleasure.

What I miss most of my mother-in-law's cooking:

1) NanKhatai: She calls these cookies Narayan Katar. So much for adapting the word to become more tongue-friendly. But the cookies are addictive. No one can eat just one!
2) Coconut Chutney: My ma-in-law prepares various kinds of coconut chutney to go with the yummy goodies for breakfast every day. All of them are too good to resist. When I am in Bangalore at her place, I suddenly forget all my 'healthy eating' fundas and start looking at the good properties of coconut. Cholesterol? What's that?
3) Breakfast: Having mentioned the chutneys, I must say that they are not the only attraction. The daily ritual of breakfast itself is something to look forward to. And mind you, she always prepares it on her own. My help comes into the picture, only when she starts cooking for lunch/dinner. If getting pampered at your in-laws' place is being lucky, then yes, I am lucky.
4) Curry leaves chutney powder: Spicy and yummy! I always get one large bottle full of this, whenever she comes to visit us in Pune or we visit her in Bangalore.
5) Konkani vegetable preparations: The vegetables that make an appearance in her kitchen are very different from what my mother cooks. Her selection is more of typical coastal produce, much of which was unknown to me until marriage. However, it is because of her cooking that I took to all those veggies, the very first time I ate them. I find it great, because bringing in variation in my cooking is quite easy for me, using the double set of veggies (my mum's and my MIL's) that I am familiar with.

Oh God, I just did a preview of this post and my, I have written a pretty long meme, haven't I? Thank God, that neither my father nor my father-in-law ever took any interest (much to their spouses' dismay) in cooking. Imagine how much I would have written otherwise!

I would love to read some more memes, so I am tagging Luv2Cook, Meeta, Mythili, Nandita and Veda.


Nandita said...

Hey dear- That's a fantastically nostalgic post! I loved your write up about Bhondla too- it was pretty much the same for us tamilians- there used to be somethign called 'golu' in various houses- kids would dress in silk pavadais and do around singing devotional songs and gathering prasad- that innocence which is totally lost in today's times.

I don't exactly miss my mom's cooking as we are in the same city- but yes, i can write down some of the food that i love traditionally- but i either dont take the trouble to make, or even if i make doesn't come out that good. Just took a break after watching that Spain-Ukraine match..

Got your mail, no probs, shall catch you soemtime on google talk or so, it's very clear to talk on that.

Revathi said...

A very nice heartfelt post -

Luv2cook said...

Cool...can't wait until someone memes me :)...this will be a fun one to write!

Luv2cook said...

Cool...can't wait until someone memes me :)...this will be a fun one to write!

Sumitha said...

Hey Vaish!I am waiting for the recipes of few dishes you have mentioned here like gulab jamun and goda masala!

CurryInAHurry said...

Thanks for tagging me along Vaish. Btw, my father and father-in-law are good cooks too, but I guess I will them out for a different meme :)

Mika said...

Hi Vaishali- your mom and MIL have so many recipe I would love to have. I am waiting for recipes of Nankatai and mango ice cream. Hope to see them soon here.

Neelu said...

Hmmm Vaishali...start cooking I am comming :)

Ashwini said...

This is so tough on us all isnt it? :-) But fun too. Loved reading about your MIL makes a killer kadhipatta chutney too..droooool

Anonymous said...

very nicely written post!! it is indeed nice that you gave 50:50 importance to both your 'mothers'!!
Would be nice if your daughter wrote like this in her blog innit?

Vaishali said...

Hi Nandita, Good to see you back! Btw, what are 'pavadais'? Some kinda dress, I suppose.
And hey, did you watch yesterday's match? Germany won. It wasn't really a great match, but we heard people singing on the roads until after midnight.

Revathi, thanks.

L2C, you've been tagged now.

Sumitha, please give me some time. I will have to consult my mother regarding these. When I do manage to make Gulab Jamun like her, I'll make sure that I do a post on it.

Veda, oh yes, a meme about fathers and FILs is a great idea. Why don't you start it?

Mika, I will certainly try and do posts on them. I'll just need some time.

Neelu, come before the food gets cold!

Ashwini, 'killer kadhipatta chutney'? Hahahaha...

Hey Anon, I'll wait for the day when my daughter writes like this about me. That was a very touching comment, by the way.

Mythiliv said...

Vaish, I responded to your meme to the best of my ability. Go ahead and check it out.

Vineela said...

Hi Vaishali,
Coming to bombay chutney ,my mom also makes as the side dish for poori (it is made with beasn,water,ginger,salt and greenchillies,turmeric and bring it boil on med flame .Tadka,curry leavs ke sath lagake serve karo
i too dont know why it is called bombai chutney but it is bombai chutney only.
hope i clarified .
Nice to read that u dont miss moms food.

Puspha said...

Delicious!!! Would u mind sharing the gulab jamun recipe? Itz my fav.

Vaishali said...

Thanks for the response, Mythili.

Vineela, thank you so much for coming back with the recipe for Bombay Chutney. Hey, why don't you do a post on it with pictures of it?

Pushpa, I'll sure try and do a post on Gulab Jamun after consulting my mother. Watch this space!

jaygee said...

hey vaishali.. my mum visited me a couple of months after I moved to Delhi and guess what was one of the things she got with her?Goda masala.. just so that I could make amti :) Hope you found your own mix to make it!

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