Monday, July 7, 2014

Beautiful food and a lovely bond

Mitali’s tears had dried by the time she reached her ‘new home’. Lots of people were waiting to greet them on the main gate. Her mother-in-law was standing at the centre with a puja thali.

Mother-in-law! She was slightly apprehensive about this relationship as she had always seen her mother and grandmother arguing with each other.

Next day was reception. Full of light, music, and exotic foods! These days,  Mitali was getting VIP treatment. She had nothing to do. Just chatting, lying, and getting compliments and food! #Beautifulfood! 

Kheer, sweetened with Khazoor (Date) ka gur and garnished with kaju and pista, was so different and delicious! Her least favourite Bhindi tasted nice. Steaming Matar pulao was garnished with fried onion, grated beetroot and carrot. Many such interesting and different dishes came to Mitali's platter and she was enjoying. And every time, elegant  Borosil  dishes, platesbowls and glasses adorned the eight seater dining table. How nice presentation makes the food more beautiful!

Mitali’s husband was loving and caring. Family members were friendly and made her comfortable. But her mother-in-law seemed a little quiet and reserved. There was a cook in the kitchen but her mother-in-law was always around, giving instructions. She was amazed to know that all the delicacies she enjoyed were her mother-in-law's recipes. Mitali loved how she herself cooked carrot or dalia soup or sweet potato kheer for her 2 years old granddaughter.

On fifth day, there was a kitchen ritual when a daughter-in-law enters the kitchen for the first time, and prepares a sweet dish for everyone. When Mitali entered the kitchen, accompanied by her sister-in-law, her mother-in-law was already there. The first thing Mitali noticed was a large mixing bowl filled with fish and she was little confused.

“What happened? You don’t like fish? Actually, we consider it auspicious. ” Her mother-in-law asked softly.

“No, I mean yes, I do. But I don’t know how to cook them.” Mitali said.

Her mother-in-law laughed heartily. Mitali saw her laughing for the first time. She looked beautiful.

“It’s okay beta. You don’t have to cook them. It’s just a ritual.” She said and paused for a moment. “You just add haldi in this bowl and crush these mustard seeds and garlic on the silbatta just once. Rest Rupa will do. Actually I don’t like using blenders for this masala.”

Mitali smiled and did so. “Now put a piece of fish in the pan.” Her mother-in-law said after a while.
 “Now you can go and rest.”

“Err, if you don’t mind, can I stay here?” Mitali asked hesitantly.

“Oh, yes! Of course. It’s your kitchen beta.” Mitali's mother-in-law said, smiling.

“Thanks! I really liked the food here, especially Kheer. It was different and yummy.” Mitali said.

“Oh, really! I know at least six different recipes of kheer and seven types of fish curry! I’ll share all my recipes with you.” Mitali’s mother-in-law said and patted her cheek tenderly. Mitali was touched.

Such affectionate behavior made Mitali’s apprehensions fade. She tried to learn. Mustard- garlic –red chilli paste, chopped tomatoes, kasoori methi, peas, coriander leaves, for tasty fish curry. 

Dinning table looked so colourful!  Fish curry, sweet smelling steaming basmati rice, a special mint corriander chutney, mishit doi, aloo posto...

Mitali loved the aura of togetherness at the table. Her mother-in-law smiled at her affectionately.

With these beautiful foods, a lovely bond was burgeoning gradually, and Mitali was all set to connect!

Written for Indiblogger My Beautiful Contest in association with

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