When I first set foot in Chennai one sultry September afternoon, little did I know of the adventures that awaited me…
Although this was not the first time away from home for me, the idea of cooking on my own and doing a full-time job seemed daunting. However, I was extremely fortunate to not be alone in this; my twin Devika was to be my pillar of strength for the months to come.
Initially, the business of buying new props (mainly utensils) for our home seemed to be a never-ending one. We were cautious to not buy everything all at once lest we run short of finances. While none of us were seasoned cooks, we decided to take up cooking as a challenge; browsing online for new recipes in office and then trying them at home became quite an enjoyable task. While initially some of our recipes turned out to be not quite what we expected, I can confidently say that our dishes were not culinary disasters either; Devika’s “biryani-pulao” and my pav bhaji were our most relished dishes.
Over the course of these 3 months and a half, we have successfully tried quite a few recipes- white sauce sandwiches, honey chilli potatoes, kanda poha, rava uttapam, idli and dosa with sambhar and cilantro chutney, sabud dana khichdi, iced tea, pasta cooked in desi style, semiyan paisam, custard, paneer tikka, pizza and kadhai paneer. It won’t be entirely wrong to state that we have achieved some level of proficiency in our culinary skills and are now more than just beginners at cooking (Infact, I find cooking to be quite therapeutic, and even look forward to the activity after a hard day’s work). Moreover, since we both love the South Indian cuisine, we never had any issue with the food in Chennai. Infact, a regular meal at our place now consists of idli/dosa with chutney!
At this point, I must confess that initially I wasn’t enjoying it one bit here and was even considering going back to Lucknow after a week; I felt quite out of place among people whose language and culture I didn’t understand. That phase however passed soon and I felt quite at home after a month or so.
Life seems to be quite good at the moment; we have survived the toughest floods that this city has probably seen, and life is still going on quite smoothly. There are so many things that I have learnt from my experiences here that I can’t possibly put them down all in one place. My coming posts will be about my first job and my life during the the floods in Chennai.