Monday, July 9, 2007

The “Baghara Baigun” Vs “Chicken Supreme”

The center of my mothers house is the kitchen. Everything has evolved around it. My folks ensured that the most utilized room in our home is the dining room with the huge table occupying most of it. Everybody who visits us and shares a meal would realize that the way to my parents heart passes through the dining room. Both ma and dad are foodies. They love to talk about food. If one were to sit with us for a hearty meal (its always a hearty meal since my mother does not believe in shortcuts) one would be enlightened on the tastes and eating habits of people of various states (courtesy dads job), how the Hyderabadi Biryani differs from the Locknowi one, how the Baghara Baigun is a gastronomic wonder, why we prefer non oily food, how to get taste in low oil cooking, what to eat when you’re a heart patient and they would always welcome new recipes. Of course we’ve had visitors who had little interest in food; but surprisingly very few. Even they were treated to a large variety for my parents know of only one way of treating their guests – the royal way that passes through the dining room!

I don’t cook all that much. I tell myself that I don’t have time. That happens to be true for at least three days out of six (Huh! Or do we really have seven days in a week). I shudder at the thought of having a kid at home cause I fear I’d starve the poor thing to death or the kid would grow up and embarrass me on dining table conversation with my folks discussing not the bagara baigun of hyderabad but the delectable pizzas offered by Dominoes/ Pizza Hut or Smokin Joes and how the Chicken Supreme is made differently at each outlet!

S and I are very compatible. I don’t get the time to cook three meals a day and she doesn’t like to eat three meals a day. But then I feel guilty. I read the paper today and discovered that there is an entire generation of working women who have found ways and means (or meals!) to tackle the guilt. The easiest and the simplest way is outsourcing (And America didn’t teach us that). To find a lady who would not cheat/ steal/ who would come early morning and prepare our food. But I wish it was as simple as that.

Working along with Mom in the kitchen has taught me a lot of stuff. I know my mom would rather be a little late in serving the food than offering hastily prepared dishes. I realize that my long hours in the office are attributed to the same thing. This need to have everything just right compels me to be detailed and thorough in my work. But what I wonder is that is it possible to have results in the kitchen and office at the same time. I realize that there are only twenty four hours in a day. I have to prioritize – everyday!

A mans world is so much simpler. No babies, no cooking, no allergy to dirt in the farthest corner of the kitchen counter, probably the number of minutes it took for the bai to clean the entire house is not even registered anywhere. What joy!

I love men who don’t pressurize their better halves about the output of the kitchen while they sit scratching-you-know-what during channel surfing. The best way to love your wife/ girlfriend is to allow her the freedom to choose how she loves you. It may not involve the kitchen at all. Although most of my women friends when not under pressure naturally incline towards the kitchen.

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