Our kids always tend to show reflections of ourselves, of our habits and behaviors. There are times when I shout at Rasha for doing or not doing something, and then suddenly realize that I used to do the same when I was small!!! Rasha used to keep losing her pencils when she was in her kindergarten, not much but a pencil a week was her norm. I was fine in the beginning but slowly it started grating on my nerves. On a weekend, she demanded for a new pencil and I gave her a shout as to how many pencils she keeps losing. My poor girl went off from the room with a sober expression, which did hit my guilt pangs but I wouldn't budge. My umma, who was listening to the drama from her room, called out, "You know, she's much better than you. She loses only one pencil a week, you used to lose them everyday!" Now is that what you call, karma? :) She's so better now, but over the weekend, I was reminded of this incident, that bought an instant smile on my face and also stopped me from shouting at her for something, which I very well know she takes from me!!! Hehe....
One curry that I absolutely adore of my umma's for lunch is the one that I am sharing with you today. Soft "vendakka" in a tangy tamarind sauce is all that is, but you could lick off plates and plates of rice without your knowledge!!! When umma was not around, I craved for this and made them without consulting with her and I was so glad that I was able to match her taste. Now you may think why I didn't call her - somehow when she tells me her recipes (which are always approximates than exacts!), I always forget to note down! Then when I call her, she would ask, "Didn't I already tell this to you?" Hmm... She feels I am old enough to stop asking her for tips and ideas and do it myself... But the thing is that I still don't feel old enough to stop depending on her though... Hehe... Off to this recipe then... :)
Vendakka Mulakittathu - Ladysfinger in Spicy Tangy Sauce
400 gms ladysfinger
1 tbsp oil
1 large onion, sliced
1 tomato, chopped
3 chillies, slit
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp Kashmir chilli powder
Salt to taste
1 lime-size pc tamarind, soaked in 1/2 cup hot water
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 sprig curry leaves
Wash the ladysfinger and pat dry. Chop into medium sized pieces. Heat oil in a large fry pan and shallow fry the ladysfinger till the sliminess is gone. Set aside.
In a saucepan, add ingredients from onion to salt with roughly 1 cup of water and bring to boil. Keep cooking till the whole mixture gets cooked. Peel the tamarind well, discard its waste. Pour in the tamarind water and continue to cook. Add water as required.
When cooked, add in the ladysfinger and cook for around 5 minutes for the vegetable to incorporate into the curry. Temper - heat oil, splutter mustard seeds and fry curry leaves for a couple of seconds - and pour into curry.