My brother was narrating an incident from the late 80’s. Two of our relatives were visiting us in Delhi. Unlike us, they really ate slow. Sloooooow. As a result, dad, mom and brother would be finished with their meals, and they would just be starting off. Rice would never be consumed in large amounts. The vegetables, the kollumbu (sambhar), and/or rasam, would all be finished off at the table. This was new for him. We were always used to finishing off any left-over lunch items in the evening, and the evening items, next morning. Invariably, the dal stays at the bottom of the vessel. So, when it was decided to prepare fresh food, protein-rich tur dal at the bottom of the rasam/sambhar vessel would be consumed by the maid. For the few days that they stayed with us, our 1965 fridge was less stressed; and the maid had less proteins from our house.
Cut to today. Tur dal is Rs. 90/kg. Staple dal for us southies. Depending on your style of cooking, anything upwards of 100g will be used to cook rasam, more for the sambhar. How often does the vessel become empty? Rarely. But, yesterday was one such day. I finished off the last of my sister-in-law’s yummy onion sambhar. And hence this flashback from my brother. “How I wish you both would learn to eat like that!”, said my bother to my nieces. “No wastage, and fresh food every meal”. Raised eyebrows all around, highest level of my S-I-L, indicated “Yeah, you wish!”.
So, I asked wifey tonight, “What happens to our left-over rasam or sambhar?”. “R’amma, takes it”. Or maid. “Does she eat or throw it?”, I continued. “It gets consumed. All of it. Apparently R’amma’s young B-I-L polishes it off. So she says.” replied wifey.
R’amma’s B-I-L is getting his daily proteins. Good. For him. I am not complaining. For now.
But I am left scratching my scalp. No, not because of dandruff. That I have, but that is not what is causing this itch. Not today.
What will the B-I-L do when he grows up and gets married? How will he adjust to the non-Mandayam Iyengar rasam or sambhar that his wife is going to make when he gets married? Poor guy, he is getting addicted, and he does not even know it! I can’t have this on my conscience. No, no! Solution, please! I need it like yesterday, but tomorrow will do just fine.