I think it’s sufficient to say that I will never cook Asian food like my Mum does. Actually, I think that I’ll never be able to cook Asian food. Ever. Ever, ever, ever. Unless my Mum is standing over me the entire time. We made butternut squash curry (with mushrooms and chickpeas) together at the beginning of the summer. It was so good I’m salivating just thinking about it. Yesterday I tried to make it on my lonesome. First I put the garlic and ginger in at the wrong time. There wasn’t enough oil. There wasn’t enough salt. And then it burnt. There was a layer of...stuff at least a centimetre thick coating the bottom of the pan. It was depressing. I cried (I’m blaming lack of food for that momentary lapse of composure). Mum drained off the veg and made it again from scratch in what seemed like half the time it took for me to fry my onions.
This does not bode well for the future. No prospective suitor (and I am talking waaaay in the future here) wants a wife who can’t cook. And makes chapattis that look like different continents.
Actually I lie. I can cook. I cook great when there’s a recipe to follow and, in the case of yesterday, the squash is peeled and chopped before anything goes on the heat. But Mum, like most other Asians, doesn’t do exact quantities. Instead it’s “a bit of curry powder, a bit of garam masaala” or “put some oil in the pan and fry some onions”. Well, how much is a bit? Some oil? How much oil? Hence why I need parental supervision.
But I bake a treat. (I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist.) I make the nicest chocolate fudge brownies and apparently really nice Millionaire’s Shortbread. But you can’t live off confectionary at uni. Well, you could, but you would be huge. And that isn’t a good thing. Can you imagine telling a patient that they need to be healthy and lose weight when your office chair has to be custom made? However, I did enjoy watching “The Great British Bake-Off” yesterday, even though I was fasting and it was Hour Fourteen. Some of those chocolate celebration cakes looked yum. I really hope the recipes are on-line. I see a giant bake day in the very near future.
Ah yes, cooking next year. You see, last year when I lived on the Vale, I was in catered accommodation. Mum said it would help with the transition to Uni and it did. I have huge respect for my fellow medics who had the same 25-27 hour week as me and cooked as well. Next year I’ll be one of them. Part of me is really looking forward to it – I’ve ripped out loads of recipes from the Asda magazine and spend the first day of Ramadan fantasising about all the lovely risottos and leek tarts I was going to make. Part of me is dreading it. I can see myself living off gypsy bread and beans. Or takeout. All this Ramzaan weight loss is going to be for nothing.
But moving into the house in Birmingham is still a month off. I’ve got packing to do before then, text books to buy, long facebook conversations with the housemates about who’s going to bring the bleach and who’s bringing the iron. They want to buy bread and milk as a house by having a tub in the kitchen for us to put money in. I can’t see it happening, least of all because I’m drinking lactose free milk at the moment. But we can dream. Arguments within the first month? Yes, I think so too.
I’m off to watch Richard Dawkin’s “Faith School Menace” on More Four. Boy I hate that guy. Sorry, dislike him immensely.