Thought I could add some spice to your life...

Thursday, June 16, 2005

I admit, I had not read Soma's blog in some time. When I got to reading it, I discovered she has laid down some ground rules for complicated cooking and really complicated cooking. They are:

1) try sticking to only one kind of spice while cooking (eg. panch phoron/black cumin/ cumin seeds and not zerra dhaniya , garam masala all together..if you know what I mean).

The Mars-Venus rule applies here too. I have noticed that men generally tend to use 10,000 different masalas together - right from Mexican Chicken marinade to American lemon pepper (Trina tells me that you do not find lemon pepper on the other side of the Atlantic) to Bengali Panch foron - and create magic out of it. Although each experiment yields a different result, it is always novel. Every meal is a surprise when a man cooks, even for the cook himself. Women, on the other hand, are conservative by nature. So, they would make curry that tastes the same every day of their life. One's consistency is another's boredom.

2) do not use sugar in cooking excepting in making desserts.

Soma, you are a Bangal, and so am I. Just try telling this to edeshis. They use sugar in everything from shaak to machhbhaja. (Imagine the plight of a Bangal who has an edeshi partner). However, there is one exception to this rule. You can use sugar in the heavy curries to add colour. What you do is add half-a-spoonful as soon as the oil is hot. The caramel gives a crimson hue - even light curries look heavy.

Anyway, Soma is the greatest Biriyani artist that I have seen in my generation. So, she can talk about these issues with some authority. I just hope that she puts up some more of her really really complicated recipes on her blog. They are not that complicated though :)


Anonymous protester said...

this is the the most chauvinistic cookery comment I have seen. Well, I am no man and I very much belong to the "liberal" wing of culinary arts. i experiment with spices and create exotic (palatable quality not to be judged)distinctive victuals and I am sure there are many more women who joins forces with me to protest. What say you Gati, the cook wizard?

18 June, 2005

Blogger Gati said...

Dear protester, please realise that there are differences between how men and women act or think, and these differences manifest themselves in every sphere of life. These are patterns that have been observed over the long human history. And there is some merit to the argument that at least some of this difference is attributable to the basic gender differences rather than social manipulation. That said, it is a statistical statement and not a law. There will be men who think (and cook) like women, and vice versa. Nothing right or wrong with that, and nothing wrong too in stating that these patterns do exist.

Belittiling women was not the prime objective driving this post. You need both consistency and variety - I suppose, and that makes for a healthy, balanced world.

btw, welcome to the "liberal" wing of cooking. I would love to have some recipes from you on this blog.

20 June, 2005

Anonymous Critic, rebel... said...

protester did not mean to deny or defy gender pattern differences - that would be grossly unfair on the women (was unconsiously writing the proverbial, 'fairer sex' but stopped for the fear of bomerangs). the protest was against negative qualifications assigned to feminine culinary arts and styles. "conservative",
"consistent", "boredom" easily translates to more objectionable banal, unimginative,trash. and the more recent,"Belittiling women was not the prime objective"; well, even if it was seconadry or tertiary it definitely calls for a rebellion of some sort. the fundamental issue here is originality in gastronomy and men do not hold any copyright to this one. you simply have built on the preset school of works.(ref: your numerous allusion to mom's cooking whenever you have been proud of your artistry - note this is true in both camps). one last clarification - no judgements of right or wrong was ever made, some statements published were simply analysed in terms of gender issues. finally, as long as you create culinary magic and let protesters savor them you'll be excused...

22 June, 2005

Anonymous jugmo-hicca said...

why argue polapans? cook, feed the poor and be happy. don't bicker.

bhalo thaikban,

22 June, 2005

Anonymous bondhu.. said...

this pen-war was started as an innuendo for star-wars, iraq-war etc - epic wars for the sake of war types...sheta hicca, jugmo te reduced howa ta besh mojar...oh btw there were no bickerings ever, this was an attempt towards mock-feminism...
thik achhe, white flags...ranna koriben, nimontron koriben, bhalo thakibo..

23 June, 2005

Blogger Gati said...

Kahake nimontron koribo janile boroi ahladito bodh koritam - jaha houk - bondhu jei hon - a-tithi hoiya asiben - dwar a-barito

23 June, 2005

Blogger soma chaudhuri said...

Goti AMI GHOTI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

30 September, 2005

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Anonymous Soma Side Effects said...

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