Yup, I’m stuck far behind. Ideally, I should be out of this challenge. But I promised myself I will complete it no matter what. So here goes –
I love good surprises, the birthday kind and otherwise. Plus, I also love surprising my favourite people and close ones. The smiles and amazement writ on their faces are totally worth going that extra mile.
So here’s the surprise. I dedicate this post to my father who celebrated his birthday yesterday. Though my theme for the A-Z challenge is about some of my favourite things, I’m gonna tweak it a bit for the purpose of this post. This is going to be about some of our favourite things aka food items.
T is for ‘Thaiyar Sadam’
Most south-Indians are big on curd rice. Yup, ‘thaiyar’ is for curd and ‘sadam’ is for rice. It may seem bland and lackluster at first glance, but it’s the perfect fix for upset stomachs, hot summer nights, and for them lazybones who can’t be bothered to cook something elaborate. However, when it comes to my dad and I, the sheer simplicity and goodness of thaiyar sadam beckons to us on any given day. A small dollop of urrugai (pickle) usually complements it; the former could be substituted by morru molgai (dried chillies marinated in salted butter milk), or sometimes a ladle of vathai kozhambu (a spicy tamarind gravy) poured into a small cavity that is smack dab in the middle of a mound of thaiyar sadam . Our weekend lunches are punctuated with the sounds of us relishing this delightful dish. Thaiyar sadam defies the rules of fine dining. Bye forks and spoons. It’s finger-licking delicious. Mmmm.
U is for Upma
To be honest, I have acquired a taste for this dish over the years. My dad, however, is an upma loyalist. Upma has its variants – rice, rava (semolina), bread, chapati (Indian bread), idli and semiyan (vermicelli). He loves the traditional preparation comprising roasted rava cooked to perfection, with or without additional vegetables. I, on the other hand, prefer vermicelli to semolina. I love the flavour of onions and peanuts in upma. And of course, coconut chutney is a must! Upma and chutney are worthy of MasterChef. My dad could eat upma all week without tiring of its taste. To me home is where my dad sits guzzling upma for breakfast with a look of intense contentment on his face.
V is for Vadaam
When I think of vadaams, the picture of my father hungrily munching on them, pops in my head. This is usually followed by my mother snatching the box away from him and scolding him for being unable to contain himself before lunch; there’s also some mumbling about cholesterol and high blood pressure. I can hardly blame him. The aroma of fried vadaams wafts into the nooks and crannies of our house, luring him (and me as well) into the kitchen. Vadaams are not an everyday thing, and hence take precedence over chips. Yes, I said it. That’s the power of crispy south-Indian rice fritters. Tamil weddings, Diwali celebrations and possibly any Tamilian family event are incomplete without vadaams.
And that’s a wrap.
There’s a reason why they say my father and I are similar.
Happy Birthday, Appa!
S is for Surprises followed by T, U and V
My theme for the A-Z Blogging Challenge is ‘The A to Z of some my favourite things’. Stay tuned for more posts, this April!