So I have never paid much attention to cooking.. or to rephrase it, I have never had the need to cook TILL I got married! When I was at home cooking was synonymous with helping my mom with the little tasks like making tea or doing the chopping or at the most preparing ready to eat snacks (I know it does not really qualify as cooking..but hey!).
After that when I moved in as a PG, I was only too happy when I found out that my room mate had a flair for cooking..but she hated the post clean up sessions…touché – we were like the perfect pair… she would cook and I would clean later..now that is something that I did not mind..time passed on… and I did venture into cooking here and there myself…and it used to be just about ok…I managed and ate it without complaining…how can you complain when you are the cook ;p
Life went on…all was good..Then, marriage happened. Now, since I stay with my in-laws and thankfully since my new mom (nmom) is the chilled out kind I did not feel the pressure of not being able to cook initially. In those days, she had to go stay with her ailing mother everytime her nurse went on her quarterly holidays. Now the first time she left the kitchen to me, she told me I didn’t have to cook while she was away since everybody was used to ordering food when she wasn’t around. However, despite my apprehensions, I thought to myself..it was now or never.. what other opportunity to learn the art of cooking.. and then the fun started!
Since it had hardly been couple of months post-wedding, I was just getting there..I was more experience being the sous chef around the kitchen than the main one. So it was daily early morning calls to nmom asking her doubts about I was going to prepare for the day. After sufficiently clarifying my doubts I would set about making what I wanted to and praying that it turned out ok. It was initially a very harrowing experience – the only relief being at night dinner would be outside – I did not have enough confidence just then. The only poor soul subject to my cooking was my brother-in-law. God bless him.. I never once asked him how it was and he never mentioned anything about it.
And so time flew. Slowly I started getting the hang of it. But it was a rollercoaster ride. I used to feel very insecure when I realised how somebody my age or younger was way better than me. Fighting this feeling felt like a tougher task than cooking itself. With constant practice, my cooking has improved now and one year later I can pretty much prepare all of the vegan dishes.. still getting my hands on the non-veg ones.
I can definitely claim to be no expert. There is still so much to learn.. but it doesn’t feel alien anymore.. and I know I have enough knowlegde to repair something if things go awry. And as far as the insecurity goes, even that has reduced a lot. I now realise not everybody can be good at everything right.. Cooking may not be something that I’m gonna be brilliant at, but from where I started I have indeed come a long way.. and I know a longer way I shall go 😉