Fresh out of college life and trying to start living on your own, one is beset with a wide variety of problems and challenges. But every other challenge dwindles in front of the enormity posed by the challenge of cooking your own food. However easy it might sound, the reality is very different. So, for all newbies who are looking to enter into uncharted waters, here are a few tips (based on personal experience) which might stand them in the long run.
1. The most important thing to understand is that whosoever opined "Too many cooks spoil the broth" was an absolute genius.
2. The concept of learning does not hold true while cooking. You might have cooked an awesome curry yesterday. But if you try to replicate your feat , you might as well end up making a puke-inducing curry today. So, your learnings from yesterday don't really count.
3. Pressure can be a big detrimental factor. Ergo, you must know how to soak in the pressure caused by the high hopes people have from you. Promise only what you can deliver; never over-do
4. Always keep a mobile phone handy. You will need to call your mom every two minutes.
5. Knives and strippers ( i prefer calling them strippers rather than peelers) are more dangerous in real life than they actually seem. Unfortunately, they are indispensable.
6. Cooking is NOT in the genes. But, yes, if your mom is actually not so good a cook (no offence intended), then you better not try!
7. There is something called a safety-valve that comes with a pressure cooker. And btw, people have died in the past due to exploding pressure cookers.
8. When you go to shop for groceries, please remember to purchase burnol(an ointment applied to burns and scalds) as well.
9. Vegetable vendors are the smartest people around. Learn to keep them happy or you might end up eating potatoes that were meant for the municipality trucks.
10. Adding more salt than is necessary is blasphemous. A little less salt never killed anyone
11. N course meals (N=2,3,4,5...) sound very exciting and mouth watering. But that is where the excitement stops. A one course meal isn't all that bad.
12. Onions can be very harmful to your eyes. They go much beyond the spects
13. Exotic food tastes much better when eaten at a restaurant. So, why take risk?
14. Washing utensils doesn't come naturally. But, it can be learnt with practice. And, its also the safest option around. Becoming a pressure-cooker-washing-specialist can also earn you a lot of respect, awe and admiration.
14. Maintain a good relation with any one you can think of. This includes your newspaper-man, the security guard of your building, the nagging bai who does your household chores, your neighbour, your office colleague, your cab driver and anyone you can think of. Who knows; you might get a lunch/dinner invitation
Now, for those who are freshly starting out on their own in the city..err..town of Pune
1. Spencer's is a nice option to go shopping for your groceries as long as you aren't really looking to buy green vegetables.
2. No one really knows the source of water supplied in the taps at your home. Better be careful!
3. While in Pune, do what the Puneites do. Which is: sit and eat at any place you can think of. This also will save you the trouble of cooking.
4. Pune can be a really boring city if you run out of ideas(although this has got nothing to do with the cooking business)
I don't think a cooking guide of this sort can ever be complete. So, if you happen to read this, please feel free to add/append. All your suggestions are welcome. Also, if you gained anything out of it, please remember to call me home for dinner :)