I am pretty sure, when you are watching TV, the part of your brain responsible for logic stops functioning. It happens because TV emits some kind of rays when it is on. Those rays hamper the part of the brain responsible for logic and reasoning. Otherwise, how else can you explain the success of all the TV serials?
“There is nothing that can go wrong. It’s so simple” said the woman who didn’t look like she eats all the food prepares. She put mashed sweet corn, chopped onions, green chillies, salt, garam masala, and bread crumbs into a bowl. Then she made cutlets out of them and deep fried them. In my defense, it really did look that simple. Moreover, I had all the ingredients except for the bread crumbs. But, I had brown bread. That rarely happens. It was the first sign, from the universe of course!
I did resist the temptation for that evening. Then it started raining and it didn’t stop raining till the next afternoon. It looked like it was going to rain forever. And soon, an image took over my brain. I was sitting on the swing with a plate full of crispy corn cutlets. I could hear the rain and smell the coffee and I could also feel those cutlets melting in my mouth. This played out the entire day. Another sign, from the universe of course!
When I went into the kitchen, I felt like owning that dish. Learning to cook from TV is one thing, putting your stamp on it, which in my case is stupidity, is another thing. I decided to use boiled sweet corn. I somehow thought, it will lend a certain texture to the dish. So, without thinking I put sweet corn in water and put it on the stove.
While it cooked, I took out the brown bread to make crumbs. Thanks to my brilliant storage techniques, the bread was extremely fresh. It was almost kind of moist. I put it in the mixer. It broke down but never became fine crumbs. I put it in a bowl. I didn’t think much about it because there was a sudden moment of realization. I had to chop the onions to get chopped onions.
I put the chopped onions, green chillies, garam masala, and salt to the bread crumbs. I drained the sweet corn and put it in the mixer too. Put it the bowl and mixed all the ingredients. The onions started to cry, the bread was moist, and the corn was also full of water. Now, I realized, I had only TV rays to blame.
Even now, I did not give up on the coffee-rain-cutlets idea. I put some water to boil on one stove and oil for deep frying on another. But, I had to fix the cutlets before they went into the oil. I was out of bread and I didn’t have anything except wheat flour to absorb the moisture. I knew wheat flour would spoil the taste. Then I had a genius of an idea. I grated a whole potato and added it.
I thought the potato will absorb moisture. And you can never wrong with fried potatoes, right? It didn’t help with the moisture situation. I had to put wheat flour in. Then, I put in a few very questionable things. Soon, I felt like I put everything I had in the kitchen into the bowl. It became as pointless as expecting to lose weight by exercising in your mind.
The oil was hot, so was the water. I put the water in the coffee filter. Now, with only the universe to blame, I put my first batch of cutlets into oil. I also wanted coffee. So, I also had milk on the stove. And the cutlets had deformed. Forget crispy, they behaved like they had never seen oil. And I lost the hope that they will even cook. I took them out and switched off the stove.
By now, I was pretty flustered. The milk started boiling. I forgot that the filter was still hot. I grabbed it and tried to open it and of course, the decoction was all over my dress instead of the milk. I screamed more out of frustration, than of pain. My husband came into the kitchen.
What the hell is this?
I don’t know. We shouldn’t eat it.
Okay. Come, let’s sit on the swing. It’s raining.
Life does come a full circle.
There is everything that can go wrong. And it’s not so simple.
Can never go wrong with fried potatoes? Yeah, if they cook that is.
You really think the universe has nothing better to do?
Will lend a texture to the dish? You mean moisture?
Don’t even get me started on the TV rays logic.
Stick to the damn recipe.
Amma’s After Effects
“Ayyo, potatoes are for absorbing extra salt, not moisture. You obviously got confused.”
“Ma, you are the only person who will say that.”
“Okay, next time, don’t waste so much of oil.”