In the recent years, I have found myself immensely appreciating people who cook for others. My mother used to and still does that for rest of the family, many others around do that. It is probably hard to get all the ingredients right, especially if you are cooking an Indian dish which is like potpourri of spices. I was always in awe for her (my mommy) cos she could manage so many things by herself and cooking 3-4 dishes was only one of the many things that she did as a chore. The old lady ie my mother, never allowed me inside the kitchen cos she thought I might pour kerosene over myself and jump into fire, for being born to peasants. Whatever… so even though I had a good chef at home, she was neither interested in teaching me nor she allowed me anywhere around the kitchen. Cooking, something that I considered an art, remained a distant cousin of Ferrari 458 Italia speciale, the common factor is that I knew such a thing existed but never had a chance to get my hands on it.
Until nearly a decade back, after I moved out of my parents place *devilish grin*I started trying my hands on cooking and still learning. So today I thought why not make potato wedges (of course the Indian way).
How hard can it be?
The setup itself takes a lot of time (chopping the potatoes and other essential preps). Then the chechi (lady who is a bit elder than me) from YouTube tells me what to fry, when… and so on. She is like put onions in frying pan and leave it there. I watch this bit, pause and go to the frying pan and throw some chopped onions in and leave it there, come back and play.
Oh forgot to switch on the flame.
Goes back, switches it on and back to Chechi for further studies. She says, add 1 tea-spoon chilly powder, 2 tea-spoon coriander powder, 1 table spoon of turmeric powder.
I get back to kitchen and think to myself. So I need table-spoon and tea-spoon to measure and add these spices. That means I need to wash 3 or 4 spoons for the process of adding spices and definitely YouTube chechi wouldn’t do me that favor. I am going to rely on my senses, reflex, power and most importantly moment of inertia required to drop the right amount spices from the box directly into the frying pan.
How hard can it be?
So yeah, spices thrown across randomly using my calculations. Mix the hell out of it in the frying pan and since there is no pause button on an actual gas stove, I simmer the flame to low and run back to her, oh yeah! the YouTube chechi. She goes on telling the rest of it and my snail brain takes the little directions and finally I run back to kitchen for the final showdown.
I do everything and keep the frying pan closed for the potatoes to cook. YouTube chechi has already finished her cooking classes and now she must have already washed her frying pan and gone to sleep. That means I am left alone for the final procedure of actually cooking the potatoes.
I wait and slightly open the lid of the frying pan and with that non-stick stirrer kind of thing, press the potato. Oh dear! Not even Arnie must have had such rock hard muscles in his prime.
I wait again…
15 minutes…I didn’t make those potatoes undergo dope test or each of it would have failed the test with flying colors.
I swear. Didn’t help. Potatoes are still rock hard and looks like they are eating up the flames as opposed to vice-versa. The best thing about not having a guide is that you are free to experiment. I go ahead pour some water from my drinking water supplies and there you go. Let’s see if I can get you cooked.
Another 10 mins past, I look at them desperately, my dear potatoes. No sign of them giving up.
Plan B :
I have some chopped onions and capsicum left. I break 2 eggs and take my back up frying pan. I fry an omelette, have it with some bread which was left over from before. Gladly dinner is done. This is why bachelors love omelette. Omelette never fails to deliver at such or any circumstance while potatoes do.
At this point I can’t help saying that my mother was a pathetic teacher. Neither did I do well in my career despite all the spanking of her’s nor did she teach me something which was useful for daily life. Probably she was smart knowing that I would waste a lot of cooking gas, burning the hell out of potatoes and carrots, can’t blame her for that. The Indian’ness’ has to kick in at some point of time. Look at the YouTube chechi. Open her channel and she is there giving you instructions without any hesitations. Thank you YouTube chechi 🙂
Even now those potatoes are still there, where I left them, on the stove. At this point, I wonder whether I should switch off the gas and continue my battle with those chopped schwarzenegger’s (thanks Google) tomorrow. Yes, I should. I cannot bring this building down for some stupid potatoes. So the battle is still on, after a short break…
And yeah, the answer to my question. Cooking indeed is very hard. Respect people who cook for you or if you are the one cooking for yourself, don’t bother, it’s going to be shit anyways.
Anyone planning to print this off and go meet my mother, I’ll find you and I’ll strangle you to death. Don’t do it please, or if you are hell-bent on doing it and eventually dying, let me know a day in advance to change my status in twitter to #FML, isn’t that the new trend? 😛