Like my friend OnlySno says, Its a pleasure to cook when you do it once in a while, everyday cooking is just a chore.
I had never had the opportunity to cook for 30 years of my life, barring a few finger counting incidents while the in-laws were away or the cook took the day off at the in-laws place. I will discount the ‘cooking’ I did in the US because it was hardly much and mostly only at times when we invited relatives to come and stay over. My actual cooking started only from when we shifted to our own home. I started off with just the basic rice,rasam,sambar. Chappatis came much later.
Cooking for me is mostly just a chore. Now with Chutku in the picture, I try and ensure that he has 5-6 different veggies every week-1 everday, different subjis, cooked differently to experiment what he might like. During week days I stick to the staple foods of rice and sambhar and curry.Weekends mostly breakfasts are something special that mom will make – like Poori Saagu or Akki Rotti or if its at my own home then I try and make Masala Dosa because Chuktu loves it or cheese/carrot omlette with italian dressing instead of pepper powder to add taste.
So, mostly I love to cook only when someone comes home for lunch or dinner. The hubby says that I just loose my mind when I invite anyone home. Also, since I do not have a microwave and dont want to be spending time in the kitchen when the guests actually come home, I try to finish it all before they come. I mostly keep only chappatis at the end. Sweet would generally be kulfi/fruit salad with custard/coconut milkmaid laddoo/ badam or carrot halwa (these are what I have tried so far and know there’s very little that can go wrong with it :-P) – stuff that I can make the previous evening.
Starter would be sprouts,corn,pomogranate,tomato,cheese,apple,cucumber and carrot salad tossed with pepper,lime and salt in a bit of olive oil. This is a standard salad with soup when the main course is pasta. Pasta is the easiest to make with store bought sauce and brinjals and capsicums and order garlic bread from Dominos with custard with fruit salad for dessert is quick and yummy and also sounds exotic enough 😀
For the typical north indian food options, I stick to chappatis (Since Im not very fond of deep fried food like Pooris) with Dal palak/palak paneer/bhaji (not too different from the regular stuff as Im afraid I would spoil the dish-Im no great cook), pudina-veggie pulao with cucumber/onion/tomato raita,regular rice and rasam and the dessert. Sometimes curdrice with tadka and grapes and pomograte will be added.
On festivals I tend to stick to the traditional subjis with coconut and bajjis and kheer or obbattu (like pooran poli) along with the sambhar and rasam.
Whew! I keep thinking of all the experiments so many of you do with baking and cooking exotic dishes and I think I too need to buy a Convection cum Microwave oven to start baking maybe. But Im so exhausted by the end of the week, that I doubt if I will have the energy to do it over the weekends. In that Im in awe of all the yummy, super looking cakes that Seema bakes. I think I would only be a great cook- in my dreams!! 😛