Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The dad who loves Indian food


My dad loves Indian food.

Growing up, he used to stuff samosas in my Ganesh lunchbox, and we had Indian food take-out at least once a week. "Hey, let's go to Akbar's tonight!" he would say. The nights when we had Indian food were always really fun.

At home, his favorite dish was Chicken Kourma with raisins, which he got the cook to make every other day. The smell of onions, turmeric and cardamon was always lingering in our kitchen. I'm not sure where exactly he developed this exotic palette, since in my grandmother's house it was always meats & potatoes for dinner. Between him, and my Punjabi-American best friend, my childhood was filled with a lot of Indian food. (Specifically, North Indian food.)

Lately I have been so tired of eating rice every day that I have been so off Indian food. I have been busy trying out new recipes and pinning non-Indian recipes that husband-ji would like. It's kind of like a recipe "spring cleaning", because I am tired of making the same things over and over again. Yes, I can make the dishes quickly, but my taste buds are sooooo bored!!!

That's why I was eagerly awaiting husband-ji's business trip as he would be away for a week for NYFW. I was eagerly plotting and looking forward to trying out all kinds of new recipes, on my little guinea pig Maya, otherwise known as the best eater ever (Thank you Jesus..). My mum was also going to be away, and she asked me to keep a close eye on him. I had to go and take care of my dad and prepare his meals for him, grocery shop, and run errands for him. Seriously, it was like a full-time job. Does professional daughter count?!

I was eagerly looking forward to trying out all these non-veg recipes when I totally forgot that my dad is now a vegetarian! (After having colon cancer, he has an aversion to most meats - but he will still eat fish). 

The first night, I asked him what he wanted me to make for dinner. "Make me Indian food", he said. I wanted to die!!! The last thing I want to eat when my Indian husband is out of town is more Indian food! But of course, being a good daughter, I couldn't say no to my dear Daddy. I prepared him the best Aloo Masala Capsicum that he ever had.

The next night, I asked him again what he wanted me to make for dinner. "Can you make Aloo Gobi?" he said. Aiyoooooo Rama!!!!!!! Kill me now. I tried out a new Aloo Gobi recipe and it tasted delicious.

The next night, I put my foot down. "Dad, I simply cannot eat any more Indian food," I said. We discussed the things we could have for dinner, when I had an "Aha!" moment and suddenly remembered that he still eats fish. And since husband-ji hates the fish smell, I have never had an opportunity to learn how to make it. So, I asked my dad to teach me how to bake a simple salmon in the oven. It turned out to be a really nice father-daughter moment that I will always cherish and remember. It's the simple things like that mean the most to me.


The salmon turned out so delicious, that I craved it again and made it for us by myself the next night. I was shocked by how little time Western cooking takes. Pop this in the oven for ten minutes. Boil this. Just a little olive oil and salt. Done. Not like Indian cooking which takes hours over a hot stove, turning me into an absolute wicked witch! Western cooking is so low maintenance compared to most Indian dishes! 

The best part....was that I realized that if I can cook Indian food so well, I can cook anything well!!!


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14 comments

  1. Can you make me aloo paratha please? Hehehe I really like the blue plate. It's so colourful and pretty!

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  2. Alex

    You are such a wonderful daughter. Your Daddy really enjoyed you taking care of him while your Mom was out of town. You really cooked great meals there. I guess we all get caught in the same eating rut and its hard to try new recipes.

    Melissa

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    1. Thanks so much Melissa, you are so kind :)

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  3. What, no gravy in your plate ?! lol (Pad)

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    1. Ha ha....no pressure cooker at my parents' house ;) thank god

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  4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JM4bXLN-8kY

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    1. So me!!!!!!! Soundtrack of my life ;) bwahaha

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  5. It so nice that you and your dad got to cook together. And I agree - western food is easy to cook as usually all it takes is to just pop it in the oven and wait. :)

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  6. The effort and time Indian cooking takes makes it very hard to do it regularly especially when one is working (one of the reasons I get a lot of Indian takeouts and never complain about the price ) .
    My Aussie friends think it's sacrilege that I get Indian takeout and not cook it myself but they don't know the elaborate process involved ......

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    Replies
    1. It is so true! It takes soooooooooooo much time!

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  7. Being a south indian even my husband n i cant eat rice everyday.over the years i have developed some kind of sensitivity to processed food that two meals of rice or white flour n iam bloated that i look pregnant. So we mix meals asian italian french spanish n indian cuisine.we even bake whole meal bread at home n we found whole.meal pasta too tat dont make me bloated.as for indian food the cleaning in my opinion takes time than the cooking.a pressure cooker really helps.i remember u mentioned u dont have one?then may be microwaving soaked lentils for 15min before cooking them will fasten the cooking.even if i forget to soak the lentils and have a chick pea craving i microwave them and pressure cook. Some people store cooked lentils in the fridge for a few days n modify them as per recipe.i havent done this myself as im.not too disciplined to plan the weeks meals.also it might help to cut veggies n store them in ziplock bags or boxes.i do tis during a hard work week so tat im not put off by cooking with the thought of all the work that needs to be done before.i usually dont like to spend more thsn an hr in the kitchen including cleanin dishes especially on weekdays.so most.my recipes i multitask with oven or microwave n the stove so they r fastened.i always think of Rwriting this blog called lazy cook never got.arnd to it.:p may b i shud

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  8. This aiyooo rama!!!! cracked me up😂😂

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  9. I came across your blog while looking for some Indian food blogs and liked a lot. How amazing! I will keep an eye on your post.

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