Men in Kitchen #002: Lunch in 15 min
The definition of ‘bachelor’ is not limited to “not being in a marital relationship”. Modern real estate industry and IT industry has modified the term ‘bachelor’ for guys [sometimes girls too… coz the term spinsters is not very common out there] who live away from home and work in IT/ITES firm. Typically the lifestyle of this lot of the population is quite different from any other normal office goer. Night outs, eat outs, late to bed, late to rise, extended work hours and so on… Naturally there is less time to actually dive into the process of cooking. But there is a solution for this and I have mastered it during my bachelor days.
First things first, we need some basic kitchen equipments. A double burner gas stove and entry level microwave oven is very much essential in a bachelor’s kitchen. Microwave safe glass and plastic utensils are also needed along with a pressure cooker, Teflon coated pans, etc… The initial investment may be a bit upsetting, but it sure is an investment on the long run. Good for your digestive system and bank balance.
Let me assume that you have all the above mentioned qualifications, lifestyle and equipments. Ill tell you how to cook a basic south Indian lunch in 15 minutes exclusive of the time taken to clean/cut vegetables and wash the vessels…
What you need…
Rice 1 measure [1 cup of rise would be an ideal measure for 1 adult]
Handful of Tur Dal
Ample drinking water
French Beans 100 gms
Ladysfinger (Okra) 100 gms
Sambhar Onions (10)
Ginger Garlic Paste
Fresh Curry Leaves and cummin seeds
Timer: not yet started…
Clean and cut the vegetables. Peel the onions and wash them thoroughly. Fill a little water in the cooker and keep a double deck vessel inside it. Rinse the rice and tur dal twice with drinking water.
In the double deck vessel, add the rice to the lower deck and tur dal to the top deck. Add 2.5 measure of water to the rice and 1 measure of water to the dal. Close the pressure cooker lid safely and ignite the burner.
Take a clean borosil glass bowl and add a little oil. Put the cut carrot and beans into it and mix with required amount of salt and pepper. Add 1/4 measure of water and place the bowl in microwave oven and set it for 10 min on high.
You can do pretty much nothing now. Stand by and wait for 3 whistles in the cooker and switch of the burner.
Pause the microwave oven and open it. Stir the vegetables and check if the water has dried out. If its dry, sprinkle little water and resume cooking.
Microwave oven beeps indicating that your boiled vegetables are ready.
Remove the lid of the pressure cooker and take out the double deck vessels. Pour out the water from the cooker base and add fresh water (1 cup) in it. The burner is still on, so the water is set to boil. Add the boiled toor dal in the boiling water. Now add the cut okra and onions, curry leaves, sambhar powder 1 tea spoon, Jeera power 1/2 teaspoon, Coriander powder 1/2 teaspoon, a pinch of turmeric powder, salt to taste, 2 spoons of oil, ginger garlic paste 1 spoon and don’t forget the one teaspoon of tamarind paste.
Close the lid and the cooking procedure is over exactly in 15 minutes. Done!
Now relax and wait of one whistle from the cooker. Then switch off the burner and return to your favorite TV show. Come back in about 5 minutes and you will find that your Sambhar, Rice and boiled vegetables are all ready to be consumed. And if you have curd and pickles in the refrigerator, you are in for the finishing touch desert of the ultimate south Indian curd rice with lemon pickles.
Don’t panic or curse me, if you get the timings wrong. You will definitely be able to do it all in 15 minutes with practice, patience and perseverance. Men! Now its time to conquer the most evasive and often lost battle ground: The Kitchen! Also hide this blog post from your women folk, else you will be in the kitchen duty for the rest of your lives while the saas bahu serial is on the TV.