I'm the youngest of eight, so I was never really expected to roll up my sleeves and do any housework or much intensive studying. My older siblings had been industrious enough to fulfill our parents' idea of a good work ethic that by the time I turned eight, I had more time on my hands than a retired Bob Hope. I was very interested in cooking, so I tried a few things that ended mostly in disaster, but one day I made proper pancakes and the experience provided me with encouragement to last for years to come. I am half Indian and half Assorted European, so I learned to make french toast and macaroni & cheese alongside pakoras and alu fry.
I never know what to say when asked "Can you cook?" because I have no idea what that means. Does it mean do I have an extensive collection of self-constructed recipes, or have I memorized a few good ones, or can I fry an egg without burning or maiming anything? My definition is learning to master a few killer recipes at a time.
My favorite things to cook
I'm really a dessert person when it comes to cooking and when it comes to eating hehe. Right now I'm going through a baking phase, I make a lot of cupcakes and am just beginning to dip a toe into the whippy world of frostings.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mother makes sweet potato puri every year on the first day of Ramadan, and then it's all downhill from there. But it evokes childhood memories, and that's what matters.
My cooking triumphs
My mother says there are two categories of food that young ladies make. Mommy and Daddy food is food only your parents will eat. The in-laws will not eat Mommy and Daddy food. Then, there is the food that the in-laws will eat and love you for. My first such dish was pancakes, which I mastered at the ripe old age of 12. Since then, I've consistently made excellent macaroni and cheese, pakoras, chocolate cupcakes and kheer.
My cooking tragedies
Nearly every time I came within a foot of a gas range and a mixing bowl before the age of 13.