I could not write. Not only because of a block but also because I could not type.
Because I was petrified.
My mind was numb. I did not know what I was doing. Or thinking. Or saying.
Not for the last one week, at least.
I was too busy staying scared stiff.
Ever since the day my dentist had prescribed a RCT.
Every morning I woke up with a sense of doom. And my heart beat went from faster to fastest.
I would hurry through the day ... trying to keep myself so busy that I couldn't think of anything else.
The human mind will, always will, wander to places that it should stay away from.
The best way to keep thinking of something is to tell yourself not to think of it; ever.
Coming to my plight, this sense of doom and uncertainity continued till today.
The final two days to deadline saw me cook food for at least four days. And some semi solid stuff , for me, like some payesh, khichuri and some boiled aloo ready.
Lots of milk and curd in the fridge too.
I had no idea how much pain I was to bear. I had no idea if I could stand in the kitchen and work.
And so on.
All this even after seeing B having a rct just a few months back.
Anyway, I am just back from the procedure, which went smoothly.
According to my dentist, I have been good and did not interrupt the whole process even once.
But then, what does he know.
I had kept my eyes tightly shut all through the twenty minutes of ordeal, after that first glimpse of the syringe looming right in front of my eyes.
And desperately tried to shut out the noise of the drill inside my head with the Gayatri mantra.
Which apparently worked because I am back home now, whole.
Except for a huge hole in one of my teeth, that has been temporarily packed with medicines.
Another sitting and I will be one complete piece.
For now, my left cheek is numb and the muscles refuse to work.
And I am pain free.
For the next three hours or so.
Hence writing down a post quickly; before the pain starts and I slip into my self wallowing mode again.
I have never been a fan of dals. But after marraige, realised that the menu for a meal in my husband's home will always be dal,roti,sabzi.
And that started my initiation to dals.
After that, I have been cooking dals everyday ... sometimes twice a day.
But have never clicked a snap or made a post out of them.
Except for the occassional Cholar dal or the Dal Panchmela.
So decided that hence forth all the recipes for our daily dal will see the light of the day on Kitchen-e- Kichu Khonn.
And last Sunday, in one of our conversations with Mummy, when she mentioned that she had made saboot masoor ki dal for lunch, I asked her how.
And she gave me this recipe.
Earlier I used to make this with just a tempering of hing and jeera and some green chillies. But this time, she added that one small thing that turned this plain dal to something absolutely divine.
The black cardamom!
If you a regular reader or have tried my Rajma, which again is Mummy's recipe, you will know about the magic this little spice makes.
The ingredients are so little that you will laugh.
But that is what I love about daily food.
Simple ingredients, simple way of cooking, awesome in taste and flavours.
So here goes the recipe for this simple chilke wali Masoor ki dal ( unskinned red lentils), that I made last Sunday.
You will need :
Saboot Masoor dal / unskinned red lentils / brown lentils - 1 cup, washed well
(I do not soak the dal.)
Water - 2 and ½ cups ( use the same cup as above )
Onion - 1 medium sized, chopped
Fresh green chilli - 1, broken
Jeera / Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Black cardamom - 2, broken
Cooking oil - 1 tsp
Ghee - 1 tsp
Salt - to taste
How to :
Heat the oil + ghee in a pressure cooker.
Add the jeera + green chillies + black cardamom.
When you get the aroma of the cardamom frying, add the onions.
Fry till they turn translucent but do not brown.
Now add the dal and stir well.
Add the water and salt.
Put on the cover and cook on low heat till your hear 2 full whistles.
Remove from heat and let the cooker cool down.
Open the lid and check the consistency of the dal.
Like all well cooked lentils, this dal too will have a tendency to thicken quickly.
So check accordingly.
Here is a closeup of the actual consistency.
If it is too thick, add some cold water and put it on heat to simmer for five minutes.
Here is a look of our lunch plate .
I had made a sabzi of Aloo and Baingan ... which is coming up next.
And a salad of sprouts, tomatoes, onions, green chillies dressed with lime juice, salt and black pepper.