One of my best memories is of the day I became “as good as patti (grandma in tamil)” at cooking.
My daughter is the first grandchild on both sides of the family – my husband’s and mine. Naturally she’s pampered to no end by her grandparents.
My amma whose cooking skills are legendary would go great lengths to fulfill her chella pethi’s (granddaughter) demands. From mouth watering savories to tangy pickles to rich sweets – my daughter had it all, at any time she wanted. Obviously she grew up accustomed to the idea that as far as food was concerned, anything she wanted was at her beck and call.
When my daughter was around 4 years she asked me to prepare Jangiri – a sweet made usually only by professional chefs. Even my amma, the great Iyengar Mami famous around select circles for her sweets and savouries, had never prepared this at home.
I tried to explain to my daughter that Jangiris are very complex to make and that I don’t feel like trying. But would the Princess listen? She made a long face and said, ” If I had asked Patti, she would have made it immediately”. Aha, now that was enough to set forth the dormant chef in Latha roaring. I said, ” Patti has never made this sweet. But I am making it just for you today. I am as good as your Patti at cooking”. And yes, I made Jangiris and I’m proud to say that my daughter found them super delicious.