I have a guest blogger today – my daughter Archana – relating her tale of woes as a child not allowed to have preferences in food! I call it learning not to be fussy 😉
Over to Arch.
When I was a child, I wasn’t actually allowed to have food preferences. It was either eat whatever was on my plate, or face the consequences (namely, One Angry Mother). In spite of these strict restrictions, I managed to develop a distaste for capsicums and brinjals. Although my dislike for brinjal faded naturally, the story of how I was fooled into liking capsicum is another kettle of fish.
I was probably ten years old, when my mother decided it would be more fun to have dinner on the terrace than at home (this was a common phenomenon – perhaps it was easier to get me to eat my food when there were multiple distractions). I was presented with a bowl of soup, which smelled delicious. It tasted even better. It was gone in a matter of minutes. I even ate seconds and thirds. I didn’t notice this at the time, but my mother was wearing a triumphant grin through this whole event. Still smiling, she asked me if I liked the soup. “Yes, it was super yummy!” I replied, all innocent. “Would you like to know what was in it?” Cue evil grin.
I guess you can tell where this is going by now. Unwittingly, I had admitted to liking capsicum soup! That was the end of all conversation about capsicum for me. I could no longer say I hated it, because ONE TIME I liked capsicum soup. This was definitely a turning point in my childhood, as I realized that even parents could be manipulative to little children!
Amma, you will be happy to know that I have developed NEW preferences now. I will no longer eat cabbage, in revenge for your manipulative tactics. Ha!
So here’s the recipe from conwoman amma for capsicum soup! Makes two large soup bowlfuls.
Capsicum – 1 large – cut into slices
Tomato – 1 medium – chop
Onion – sliced – 1 tbsp
Garlic – 1 flake
Butter – just a smithereen (chitikedu!)
Sage – 1 pinch
Sugar – 1/2 tsp
Pepper – 1/2 tsp
Ginger – cut into juliennes – 1/4 tsp
Coriander chopped – 1 tsp – to garnish
Sweat onions and garlic in butter till translucent. Add capsicum, tomato and 1/2 glass water. Cover and cook till vegetables are soft. Let cool and grind to a smooth paste. Strain and discard the lumpy stuff. Add another cup of water, salt, sugar and sage and bring to the boil. Switch off. Fry the ginger juliennes in very little butter and add on top. Sprinkle coriander and serve.
Play the guessing game now: “Guess what’s in this soup?” till people are ready to murder you. Stop short of actually getting murdered – then you will live to write another day!