Today, the end of the month – I’ve treated myself to a guest blogger!!! I thought long and hard about who I should invite and then decided the mantle of that honour should fall on my oldest companion in cooking – we started cooking lessons when were 7 and 8 years old respectively. Presenting my brother in real life – Arvind Chenji!!! We have even gifted each other cookbooks for birthdays when we were about 12 or 13 years old!
Over to Arvind…
Variety, they say is the spice of life. My mother believed the opposite. Faced with the prospect of eating the same vegetable that we somehow managed with complaints in the morning, my mother added a different spice and a dose of water to it and dished it out in the evening. Which is how I coined’ Spice is the variety of our life’.
Not that it affected my mother. She laughed merrily at my attempt at wit and sarcasm and continued producing a series of disasters from the kitchen. The only good that happened was Panda. Trinath Panda, an employee at the secretariat who moonlighted as a cook at home. He actually managed to fill the unending pit beneath the chest and ensured that my brother and I grew up with some flesh on our bones.
He joined the house hold to cook dinners. I was so fascinated with his cooking that I would leave my books and sneak into the kitchen to observe the maestro as he dished out the best omelettes in the world.
Panda too put up with an inquisitive and pesky brat with immense patience and affection. It was from him that I learnt to cut onions and all other vegetables with speed and panache.
Listed here is the recipe for an omelette a’la Panda.
Omelette a’la Panda
2 eggs [ definitely chicken]
1 small to medium size onion finely chopped
1 small tomato also finely chopped
a small bit of fresh ginger minced
optional extra : a few sprigs of coriander leaves
salt and red chilli powder to taste
Put the pan on the stove and of course, light the stove. One teaspoon or more of oil which should be run all over the inside of the pan once hot.
While the pan is on the stove, either on the chopping board or a bowl, mix the onion,tomato, ginger, salt and red chilli powder with vigour. Like you need to extract the juice from the onion. Then put the mixture into another bowl where the two eggs have been cracked open and pronounced fresh. Beat the whole concoction with a fork till it is thoroughly mixed.
By now, the pan would be pretty hot and you should be able to see the heat waves rising above it. Pour the mixture into it, cut the flame to minimum and cover with a lid.
After a minute or more, raise the lid and flip the omelette over with a flat spoon , cover again for a little while and serve hot. Cheers!