Sunday, September 14, 2014

Day 51: Aamti

Isn't it always about the simplest things?

When you think about what food you crave, it is usually something your mother prepared. The first things about the food you miss are the elaborate dishes she prepared for some special occasion, or the crab curry which would prepared only on Sundays.

And then there are the simplest of preparations, like the aamti (daal), prepared in your house every single day as an accompaniment to the rice. The same recipe, every single day. Certainly not the tastiest dish, nothing fancy about it. Just the normal staple fare.

Next thing you know, you've bought all the necessary ingredients to make aamti. You're excited, second guessing every ingredient you add, whether the jaggery will be enough or whether you put too much red chili powder, all the while wondering how your mom did this every single day. Surely it didn't take her this much time!

When you finally taste what you've made, you know it isn't as amazing as the aamti you ate every day of your life. Perhaps it never will match up to those standards. However, underneath all the clumsiness of your inexperienced culinary skills, you can taste a hint of the food that was a constant companion during your formative years, the one thing that would be present in your plate no matter what, full of ghee and tasting of home, comfort and love.