Never the same

Never the same

So, based on the success and the happy reception of the besan-coconut-almond burfi, I decided to do a “repeatay”, Mi. After all, who doesn’t want to replicate a good thing? Also, the first batch left a craving behind, after its abrupt disappearance.

Thus, yesterday morning found me measuring out the ingredients rather smugly. After I finished cooking lunch, I thought, why not quickly make the dessert as well. As it is, I was still going at the housework as if on steroids. I packed two huge bags of disposables and stuff and simply left it outside, heaving a sigh of relief as I shut the door. And feeling rather pleased to see the empty space created by them.

But back to the sweet. So I roasted the cashew and the besan. What a fabulous aroma that is! I added the coconut, tossed it around the “shwee” pan and then added the syrup. Then I added the almond powder. All good so far. Except, on continuous folding, I found no signs of it becoming burfi. Instead, it suspiciously looked very much like besan halwa. Pondering over it, and continuing to fold it in, I seemed to hear your voice telling me to turn up the flame. I did. And vigorously handled the ladle. Ah well. I could see it was done, but it was halwa, not burfi. As the Americanos say, my bad. I realized I had goofed up the proportions of the ingredients. How hilarious. I switched off the flame, and poured the sweet on the waiting greased plate. This time I had chosen and smaller, deeper one. Well, it settled nicely, moist, very halwa-like. I scooped a little off the ladle and rolling it to cool it, asked Sury to taste it. He said “great!”. Ditto with Vidur. I know when to hold em and when to fold em – so I left it at that, smiling away.

Because you see, they assumed that I had made halwa. I did not advertise the fact that I was going to make burfi–or anything for that matter. Big life-lesson, Mi. Never disclose your goals publicly. Right? So all is well that ends well.

Somehow, this made me think of my paruppunjaam. You know how I’d relish it, and then try to mix another round, but complain that it was never the same? Even though I made it exactly like the first time? Heh. I remember how you would mix lots of paruppunjaam and only serve me half the first time and have a second serving ready – but even that wouldn’t seem quite like the first. Which makes no sense. That’s the thing with replication. I think the logic is, we’ve already tasted it once, so we are in some sense, already satiated. The anticipation is less the second time, and therefore the appreciation, I think. Well whatever.

Maybe the paruppunjaam is not the ideal example except the replication not meeting our expectations part. Ah well, as I said – all was well. The halwa was much appreciated and viewed as a different sweet. Also, with all of us in different stages of the cold–, it was the ideal throat remedy. Talk about a win-win, eh?

By the way, I have to tell you this. I am enjoying a lot of buttermilk, in a quest to reduce my coffee consumption. And every time I blend it with the water, I think of you–how much you enjoyed the buttermilk. And how I’d always have a running commentary, telling you how we must first whip the curd before mixing the water so that there are no lumps. And you’d keep smiling, not once getting annoyed over my yadda yadda yadda.

I have nobody like that now, Mi. I am blessed to have memories of you to keep me going. Thank you.

The photo above is the campus of IISER Mohali in winter. I usually waste time looking for images. I have now decided to use my own photos. What am I going to do with all of them anyway? Yes, I know you approve, Mi! Better late than never with wisdom, right?



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