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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Food Of The Matter......


So what is the benefit of living in a condo with people from different parts of the country? Think think......

Still thinking? Think .....

Got it? No?

Okay let me help you out here....

Well, I live with my family on the 23rd floor in a wonderful condo. The couples here are the same age as us and most of them have kids who too are of the same age-group. There is a mix of people from all parts of India here..And guess what makes it so wonderful? The food that is cooked in these homes, what else??? :)

Well, it is a lovely thing that we have going on here. I am a Bengali and my husband is originally a UP-ite, but since we are both born and brought up in Delhi, both the North Indian and Bengali cuisine are dominant in our kitchen. So whenever I make something typical to our tastes, I make sure to share it with my girl friends in the building. So each time I make rajma chawal, spicy mustard fish, aaloo tamaatar, kaali daal, dhaaba dal, tadka daal, mixed dal, dum aaloo and the likes, I send it to my friends.

My friend Namita who lives on the 14th floor is a Punjabi who is married to a Maharashtrian. So each time she makes chholey or the Maharashtrian dish made of some leafy vegetable that is folded and fried (I forget the name each time) she makes sure to send it over. Plus her husband makes this awesome mutton biryani which I almost always get. And she sends these yummy fish delicacies that are so irresistible.

Her neighbour Vidhi is also a very dear friend. She is a Sindhi and also married to one and her best specialty which I almost order her to make is the Sindhi curry. Oh, I cant tell you how I begin to crave for it if I dont keep getting it on and off. She always does the needful and sends over a huge bowl filled to the brim.

My another friend lives on the 10th floor and is half-South-Indian half-Maharashtrian. Jyothi makes this yummy south-Indian fare at home, plus all the chutneys and accompaniments and also something new that I had recently the name to which I forgot. Her father is also gifted with the culinary talent. He specialises in making mouth-watering chiwda and snacks at home and each time she visits her home town she remembers to bring back these home-made delicacies for me by the kilo !!!

Vinaya, my friend on the 11th floor is the best cook of daal-baati. So much so that when she sends over the dish, my husband does not even wait for any rice or roti to accompany it. He just picks a spoon and starts eating off the dish....Its that yummy. And she also keeps sending these delicious rice crispies that are to be fried. And yummy curry and all....

Kavita, my friend on the 22nd floor makes awesome black chholey.....I happened to mention it once when we were talking in a group. She remembered it and next time that she made the dish, she was kind enough to send me the same too.

Though we live in India, its cultural richness is so vast and diverse that many times we end up missing on many of its traditions and specialties. I had never had daal-baati and other Gujarati fare before, same for Maharashtrian cuisine. But now that I am in the company of these lovely friends of mine, my taste buds have surely developed.

We hardly find time to welcome people in our lives and in our homes anymore. So when someone remembers to share a meal with you in these busy times, it sure is special...
I am really lucky to have met such amazing friends in my neighbours.