I am a person who was pushed into cooking. The kitchen has always been my battleground, a place where I have to go upon necessity. ( I had written about my cooking woes earlier too)
Growing up I had always imagined myself being surrounded by people catering to my needs. But Mumbai jolted me to reality. After marriage my visa got delayed and so my husband had to resume his work and so returned while I stayed back. But unknown to us he had brought with him malaria. The doctors here don’t know how to treat malaria and so it complicated into malarial jaundice and was hospitalized
And I arrived in a state of panic armed with recipes from mother, mother in-law, sisters in law, neighbours etc.
Later on I realised that he is a person who loves home cooked food and is otherwise a very reluctant eater. I can experiment with cuisines from all over India at home but in restaurants he will just be happy with a bowl of soup, and so………. I embarked on cooking full-time.
No no don’t get me wrong, cooking full-time meaning right from cooking meals, breakfasts, snacks, pickles those sorts.
Thats where the imperfection comes in.
My dosas and chappathis have never come out round. Neither are they of the same size. (Unlike my sister and my bhabhi, whose chappathis I think if they are individually weighed will also be of the same weight) But yes I can vouch for the nutrition part and the taste part. Usually it will taste good maybe because its made with a lot of love. ( I cook usually in odd hours and the kitchen will be like a battle field then. If my husband ever sees the disarray when I cook, I am afraid that he will get the shock of his life.)
And so it is that vegetables are cut not to equal shapes, one might be big, one small, one rectangle and one square. My diamond cuts ( tukdis, shakarparas) are never diamonds and my chaklis (murkus) never as they should be. In fact my chaklis will be any shape rather than the shape that they should be.
And so when the first time I made Ladoos hubby dear held one in his hand and peered, then he took another and followed suit and so on. Reason being that one was circular, one oblong, one oval. And so he insisted that the next time I make ladoos I call him to bind them. From then onwards it has been him who binds laddoos and chaklis. Yes, I do the groundwork and he gives the finishing touches.
My mother says that it’s because of him that I have not perfected myself, but I retort saying that it is him who likes home cooking, I would have been perfectly happy opening a bag of chips.
But the fact is i enjoy being with him, the tidbits we exchange when he is shaping the chaklis and I frying them, the reminisces, the jokes; no I am never going to perfect myself.