Nothing quite like mom’s cooking
“Get him married, then you won’t have to worry about his food so much,” I said with supreme confidence, as the good mother-in-law cooked up a storm to send to her son who lived in a town a couple of hours away.
“Or not,” I added, all of a sudden quite unsure about this simple truth every mother worth her daal, chawal and other simple ghar ka khana believes in. I mean, look at my husband. He still depends upon his mother for his nutrition needs, comfort food and for simply filling his belly. The true blue South Indian I married loves his nariyal ka chutney, puttu and baingan cooked in the South Indian way and not the kind cooked by yours truly. Ergo, the good mother-in-law gladly obliges her darling son’s constant demands for specialty South Indian food.
When it comes to food, yours truly is never too shy to refuse an offer of food. Rather, I demand food when in dire need.
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Learning to love all sorts of food
Right after marriage, I experimented with cooking food for the husband and much as he loved the gesture, the same could not be said of the food. Yet, he soldiered on until I realised that the way to his heart was in ensuring Amma ka khana is in steady supply in the household. We divided our time equally between Dosa Diner (Amma’s house) and Dhaba Express (Mamma’s house) and thereby we developed a taste for both South Indian and North Indian styles of cooking.
Pregnancy was the best time for me, because I gave up cooking for the self and the spouse and had food on demand supplied by both Amma and Mamma, who ensured that the twins in my womb and, by extension, I had no dearth of nutritious food supply. It was a great time indeed; I still look back with fondness at those days when my food problem was solved largely.
Even after delivery, the good mother-in-law plied me with nutritious fish to ensure the right nutrients were passed on to the darling grandsons, but who was I to complain! Royal treatment in the form of food is always welcome in our world.
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I thank my lucky stars that my mother-in-law loves to cook
If not for her, I would have been an unholy mess when relatives came for lunch. I would have survived on store bought dosa batter and I would have never known the taste of awesome appams plied with a generous dose of coconut milk and sugar. All festivals would be without any festive food and no snacks would have been made in my home ever.
In addition, if the good mother-in-law had any lofty dreams of retiring after her son married, then I am sorry to burst her bubble. It has certainly doubled her duties, because now she is responsible for the nutrition needs of her grandsons as well, ensuring every food group is duly fed to them so that I can afford to give them the supreme comfort food which is dosa and a dollop of melt in the mouth Nutella without feeling the pangs of mommy guilt.
Moreover, if you are really curious to know, yes the brother-in-law’s nutrition problems were really sorted after he got married to a woman who loves to cook. My words were truly prophetic as far as the lucky man is concerned. However, my spouse still struggled with the food cooked in the house, because the cook whom I appointed immediately saw value in pleasing the akka who pays her monthly salary and thereby began to cook food mostly the way akka (read salary provider) likes it. Until a few well-timed admonishments hurled her way made sure that she got her act together and created a menu that the man of the house appreciates.
However, nothing can beat amma ke haath ka khana and therefore, good mother-in-law, there is no rest for you, yet.