Lets chat about chaats? Post 22

I ran out of post ideas today. Started two posts and abandoned them. Sigh!

NaBloPoMo prompts are not all that appetizing either. The only thing that looks remotely appetizing is the thought of food. Some yummy, yummy chaat, which I have to make myself. Tough life 😦

I wish we could find one restaurant here which serves good chaats, have the time the sad excuses for a chaat make me repent the decision to eat out. I make better chaat than them, and that is something, because as you guys know, cooking and me are far, far apart. My friends however, make the best, tastiest dishes. One of them once made a delicious chaat with potato waffles, chopped onions, tomatoes and green chillies and chaat masala. It was so simple, and yet so delicious. All she did was toss it all together, and  it was ready. The most mouthwateringly delicious dish! I am drooling at the mere thought of it.

Another friend tossed up a chaat with similar ingredients, and everything else he could lay his hands on. It was, needless to say, delicious! We were on holiday, and I think that was the most satisfying meal during that holiday.

I grew up in a little town in eastern India. The golgappas and papdi chaats that we got there, was mindblowing. I still do not get that taste anywhere. It was only when I moved away for studies that I realized how wonderful they tasted. And also how tastes that we grow up with last us a lifetime. Some of the tastes that husband loves, I find flat, or boring, and he can’t understand what I like in some dishes. Also the addition of one little ingredient can kill the taste for some, while without that same ingredient, another set of people might hate the dish!

I had blogged about how I love fermented idlis and dosas. I just cannot eat unfermented idlis and dosas. On a side note, I have finally mastered the art of fermenting it. I found the right place to keep the batter in order to maintain the temperature to ferment the batter – perfectly! So as I was saying, I hate unfermented idlis and dosas. We know someone who hates fermented idlis and dosas – absolutely hates it! All a matter of taste, isn’t it? Husband hates orange and lemon cakes, while I love them!

So what is your idea of a perfect chaat? Do you like it hot and tangy or sweet and sour? Or do you like a good bhelpuri or is it the golgappas that you lust after? All I know for sure is, that I need to do some chopping and tossing now, if I need to get any work done. I have to eat some chaat, NOW!

Do you..

forget that you bought something and remember just before it is about to near it’s expiry? No? Well, I wish I could say the same. It happens to me all the time 😦

Yesterday, I ‘discovered’ a packet of ready-to-roll puff pastry that I bought last week, after getting impressed by the custard tarts that my friend dished out. They were absolutely delicious. She, of course, made even the pastry from scratch. I decided to go the easy way – I picked up a packet of ready to roll puff pastry and then forgot all about it. Until yesterday. Thank god for that, because it was one day away from expiry.

The custard tarts were out of question – too much work and only the egg yolks were needed to be used in the recipe, which meant that I would have to use the whites in some other recipes – as I said, too much work. So I decided to go the easy way.

1. Home-made bite-sized pizzas – made by daughter.

And this is how they turned out 🙂

2. Chocolate croissants or chocolate parcels whatever you want to call it – just because we felt like it 🙂

3. Vegetable puffs- just to bring back memories of all those bakeries in Bangalore 🙂 Although I have to say, they tasted nothing like I would have liked them to 😦

And after all that buttery, flaky pastry, I need to go on drastic diet!

The perfect blend of flavours..

..is so different for different people. For me one of the most perfect blend of flavours would be chocolate and orange. I just love the taste of chocolate and orange together.

I love orange, the fruit, orange in cakes, and love chocolate in all forms. Put orange and chocolate in a cake, and what more can I ask for?  Jaffa cakes must have been made for me.  What I don’t get is, how much husband hates the taste/flavour of orange in sweets. He steers clear of all citrus based cakes and sweets. So when I make chocolate orange muffins, they are all consumed by daughter and myself.

I can’t help wondering how we develop tastes. Each of us seem to have some flavours which we love and some which we are totally put off by. I remember eating something which I was absolutely delighted by, but husband was totally, totally put off, and vice versa. I guess all of you have figured out by now, how diverse our tastes in food are!

I remember reading how we could develop tastes for healthy food, especially in young children by exposing them to healthy eating right from childhood. I am hoping that this theory works, or I am sure to have a very angry daughter when she gets to know that I deprived her of junk food, unnecessarily.

Food is not just about eating is it? It is all about the experiences, the memories, the nostalgia that we associate with certain food. The smell of vanilla in baking, makes me all nostalgic and want to gobble everything up. Similarly, the chaats that I ate when I was growing up is unmatched by anything I eat today. I keep looking for a certain sort of baked mushroom, which I once had somewhere, and is yet to be matched by any restaurant since. Husband says it exists only in my mind. Nostalgia puts a premium value on some foods which might taste absolutely ordinary to others. Comfort foods have their own place, don’t they? Food combinations that sound(and taste) weird to some, tastes heavenly to others. The environment that we grew up in, the food that we had as a child, all contributes to the tastes that we develop.

Apparently,in addition to all these factors, we also have our genes to blame for liking or not liking some food. So next time, we had better not blame the cook/chef for something that we don’t like – it’s all your ancestor’s fault!

Do tell me, what flavours works for you? Do you go eww at cheese or do you go gaga at jalapenos or is it daal-chaawal that makes your meal?

And if the sound of orange and chocolate makes your tastebuds do a jiggy, here you go…