Saturday, April 20th, 2013
I promised lots of blogging this weekend, and I plan on keeping that promise… tomorrow (procrastinators unite! …tomorrow). No, but really. Today, I am cooking dinner for my host family. Because I mean, what a better way to say thank you? I won’t disclose too many of the details here in case they are reading — it’s supposed to be at least partly a surprise — but I can say some things about the experience so far.
For starters, I’m cooking “American.” I put “American” in quotes because as an American I know we don’t really have our own cuisine — we borrow from other countries. America is a melting pot of people from, well, everywhere, and as such so is our cuisine. Okay, we did pioneer most fried things, but I’m not about to blow my thank-you dinner cooking hamburgers and french fries (not to mention many Indians are vegetarian).
I’ve spent the better part of the morning researching what’s available in India and comparing it to things I want to cook. This isn’t like, “Darn, I’m out of whole wheat flour, guess I’ll just use white.” This is like, “Darn, nobody knows what cranberries are, guess I can’t make a salad.”
I finally picked recipes I think I can make (though I am taking some risks with the spices… and in particular, the apples, I think). My host’s parents are strict vegetarians and in Hindu, that means no eggs, as well. I also can’t use garlic or alcohol (I wasn’t planning on getting them drunk, but a white wine reduction never hurt anyone, did it?).
Then, I converted all the measurements from pounds into kilograms.
And now, fingers crossed, I’ll leave for the grocery store and come home with at least 50% of the things on this list… and not have to change my whole dinner plan on the fly (though I’ve become experienced at that. Thanks, college!).
Oh also, since I want to thank my host and the housekeeping, and by that point share with the housekeeping’s kids, I’m tripling all my recipes. And doing all the dishes.
Wish me luck!