Pass The Plate Update...
For a while, unfortunately, I hadn't done a Pass The Plate- I felt inundated with studying and work for my finals, and much to my dismay this took a back seat. But at the start of summer my mum and I decided that we would make it a more regular occurrence, and every couple of days we try to distribute some food.
The beauty of Pass The Plate is its simplicity: we used leftover pooris (I'll post a recipe soon) and fried up some peas to make rolls, we made some omelettes one day and put them into sandwiches, and other little things like that.
For one session I tried my hand at namkeen- the hindi word for little fried snacks. Madhur Jaffrey had a perfect recipe for sev, and I assumed that the same could be used for differently shaped namkeen.
It was loads of fun, really hot and definitely interesting... but no, you cannot use sev mixture for other namkeens, such as muruku. The recipe said they would crisp up as they dried, so I kept waiting and waiting but they remained like french fries. A few hours later they tasted like soggy french fries. My sister absolutely loved them, and as my mum rightly pointed out, I wasn't feeding food critics.
Of late we've been delivering the food to a couple of families that live outside the National Gallery of Modern Art. There are loads of children, very old women, and they're all always really eager to get one of the packages. It's kind of hard to articulate the looks in some of the little kids' eyes, but it's all over in a flash- even the plastic bag is taken- and you don't often realise just what the food meant to them.
Today I made a stack of simple grilled cheese sandwiches. It wasn't some amazing culinary experimentation, and it's easy to go and buy a bunch of bags of chips or cookies- however these are loaded with artificial junk- but I really just love the time I spend in the kitchen, no matter what I'm doing.
Almost every evening I'm in the kitchen with my mum, giving her a hand with whatever needs to be chopped, washed, stirred. Some nights I cook- I made leek fried rice and peanut sauce yesterday- and other times I'm an extra set of hands, but either way I'm thrilled.