Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Adventures in Motherhood: Cooking

I learnt several things after I became a mother. Gardening was one, toy making was another. But of the most interesting was my exploration as a family chef.

My first meals involved using copious amounts of spaghetti sauce from the jar to flavour all my dishes. Soon my kitchen cupboards were overflowing with empty Prego jars. patti used to, once in a while supply me with idli flour, which I alternately used to make idlis (seldom, because it required a lot of washing up) and dosas. I used to be able to make fairly decent vegetable chutneys though, and sandwiches

I remember alternating husband with mashed eggplants, zacusca, and salata boeuf for about a year when we were leaving Anjali at patti's house each morning, and buying copious amounts of bread.

Soon after Sophia was born, I borrowed a book from Jurong library - classic vegetarian recipes made easy. i remember husband's teasing when he spotted it among the piles of books to be borrowed. But the first recipes I made out of the book - mushroom soup and spinach cream pasta were excellent, and he never said anything much about my culinary skills after

For the past two years, one or another vegetarian cookbook has graced my kitchen. Recently, I have also taken to borrowing a desserts book and a bread making book. Without the cookbooks, i feel a bit at a loss when beginning to cook, though I can make a fair number of  decent recipes - a risotto or pilaf, pasta with multiple sauces, an all purpose casserole, mamaliga or gnocchi, potatoes, cutlets etc.

This morning, I put together a sublime combination of lentils, pumpkin and coconuts, cooked in Soya milk. Strange combination but totally delicious. It complimented some plain rice and yogurt, along with my favorite recipe from Esther Brody's book - self Saucing plum pudding.

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