When I moved to Berlin in 2016, I started cooking proper meals. Not just for myself, but for 5 people. We were 5 friends living together, and the others used to take up different chores around the house while I took care of the cooking bit, with each of us helping each other as required, of course. When I started, I was fairly amateurish, but I improved, obviously due to practice. When you are making chapatis for 5 people almost every other day, you are bound to get better at it.
After our semester ended, we all relocated to different places in Europe and I was living alone in the new city (Ljubljana, Slovenia) in a shared apartment. This meant cooking only for myself. I really didn’t feel motivated enough to make chapatis for just one person, so I must have made chapatis maybe once or twice in a span of, say, 3 months. I think its pretty weird for an Indian who is perfectly adept at making chapatis. However, despite not getting my hands dirty with chapati making, I did not feel too lazy about cooking my own meals. It almost became second nature. At this point, I was clear that whenever I move back to India and start living on my own, I will not hire a cook till the time I can do without it so as to not lose my habit of cooking every day meals without feeling lazy. (I assume every one reading this post is aware that its pretty affordable to hire a cook in India compared to western countries).
Till this day, I have not kept a cook. This also includes a 6-month stint in Dubai where I had an office provided serviced apartment which basically has a kitchen with bare essentials. I was perfectly comfortable cooking my own meals there as well.
However, there is one thing I have realized in this bringing food to the table journey of mine. I am a very ‘jugaadu’ type of cook. This is a Hindi word which means someone who wants to do stuff the street smart way, without doing everything by the book. What I mean is that my prime goal while cooking is always to fix a meal in the shortest span of time possible with it being delicious. However, I am not too patient with following recipes, nor am I one of those who will rush to get that one ingredient to get the recipe right. If I don’t have it, I’ll mostly do without it. Why am I writing this post then? That is because I feel a little envious of those who carefully craft a recipe around me and it usually tastes fabulous. I don’t want to change the way I cook entirely, I am more of going with the flow kinds, but sometimes I wish I had that kind of patience on few days at least. (Only few days though, because I know these careful crafters will not be comfortable cooking such elaborate recipes everyday :P). For me, even when I am hosting people, I find it hard to cook patiently.
Do you cook? What are you – the patient & elaborate recipe cook or the fix a meal quickly like myself? Tell me below!
Also, on a related note, I am thinking of chronicling my quick recipes here! Do let me know how that sounds. 🙂