September 24, 2009

Culinary Calamities

Recently I was sifting through my many drafts and I saw that there was something which I started off sometime back, but never got down to completing. So on this occasion of my 150th post, on this blog which I started way back in 2007 (after being initiated into it by a professor of mine from college) I shall be continuing this post, though completing should be the better word I think. Also, I think with the past two years in Bangalore, there have been many more points made which makes it easier to trace the foray that I have made into the kitchen. Now when I look back, I think I did certainly inched my way into it, with many puddles to jump over and at times getting my feet ankle deep in muck too!

I think it’s most appropriate to inform that all that most of these items have been made over a period of years and many people have been subjected to it. One very calming effect is that in spite of that, I think the items not mentioned here (and which came out much better) must have compensated for some of the effects, as one person in spite of all the yuck tastings, has decided to stand by as my tasting partner for life.

Now, here I take a deep breath and bare before you all, the N number of mistakes that I have committed through these years.

Paneer Capsicum

The first time I made this, I had no clue that I was supposed to be frying the masala and following which the paneer is added. So, you must be wondering, what exactly did I do??? Well, I just sauted the onions till pink and then the tomatoes, after which I dumped the capsicum, poured some water and added all the masalas which I thought appropriate! After a few minutes, I added the Paneer and promptly switched off the flame after a few minutes!

Now, here I had a very raw masala tasting, almost uncooked paneer capsicum!

Bottle gourd or Laukhi

Everyone told me that this is one of the easiest veggies to make, due to its almost negligible cooking time, and I was Oh so thrilled with this piece of information. I fried the requisite masala this time around, in a pressure cooker and then added the laukhi when the masala was done. Now I added quite a bit of water (no one told me not to add water when cooking laukhi) and then closed the lid to cook it. I opened it after 5- 7 minutes and I see a complete kichdi form of the laukhi, which barely was looking edible.

Simple Masoor Dal

I wish to believe that everyone should have burnt dal atleast once in their lifetime. It’s a very satisfying experience of screwing up something which is deemed one of the simplest activities in Indian cooking. With my dal, I not only burnt it, I also spoiled the pressure cooker, by blowing off the safety valve! The water was too less for the quantity of dal I was intending to cook (as per my mom).

Bringal aka Baigan

My recent disaster involved trying to make something similar to bhindi masala using brinjal. I do not know why I thought by just frying the brinjal, it shall take a similar appearance, which it gracefully did not and finally ended up even with less salt and chilli so that one could not even pass it off like medicinal capsules! This is one the few things which had to completely flipped into the garbage in! :(

Now with all these interesting details which I have gained knowledge in, I hope that the following years shall be a tad better than the past two in terms of cooking :)


  1. hehehehehe :P

    best of luck!!!!!!!!!!!!

    so far, i have not had any great disasters in the kitchen :P coz i dont experiment that much :P

  2. Really funny post, had me laughing out loud!!! Hey look at it this way, culinary disasters make for far more interesting stories than perfection in the kitchen...

  3. i know I shld not but I am really laughing out aloud...

    u sound like my sis

  4. Oh yes, it is all part of learning...

    i never venture into day to impress my wife, i thought i will make bhindi sabji...i cut the bhindi , then washed before putting into the frying pan....u can guess how it could have turned out...

  5. Interesting kitchen adventures! Enjoy cooking, especially after marriage :D

  6. this is amazing!! how cud you goof up on lauki and dal ya!! those are really supposed to be simple! actually i shudnt be saying anything.. i hv goofed up quite a bit myself.. but my goof ups tend to be on the taste sector.. i hv a baisc idea of how to cook wat.. but somehow it never tastes as great as my mom's or g'mom's cooking...

  7. Cute post :) Its cool that you still remember all these disasters.

  8. LOL!!!!

    :P :P :P

    aathira!!!! happens! :D but have seen u put up pics of salad and pasta that u have made, and they looked yum!!!

    so these are things of the past!!

    and if not... u are getting married.... after that, cooking classes...FOR THE HUSBAND!!! :P :P :P

    tee hee hee!!!

    the worst i did was when i was cooking bhindi, it got all stuck, so my brilliance shone and i added half cup water..... don't even ask what hell cooked after that! :P :P

  9. LOL! 'Satisfying experience of screwing up an easy task'...that was hitting the nail ON the head :-) We have all gone through this (still do sometimes!), so now, in retrospect, it really seems hilarious!!


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