And when an illness makes itself known, whether it is you or a loved one, you get a fresh new view of life.
Especially if it is family.
It is as if someone has held you by the scruff of your neck and has given a good shake, reopening your eyes to a fresh new outlook.
You see life from a different plane.
And your every day, mundane tasks and complaints look so very miniscule.
It is at times like these that you get comfort from the only real thing in life ... omnipresent and ever needed ... food.
Simple food. Comfort food. Light food.
Food that will settle inside you without so much of a thump.
Food that will lull you to a calm.
And help you see through the days that seem so dark that you almost start to doubt the adage of the light at the end of the tunnel.
It is this light jhol that I have turned to so many times ever since I made this for the first time fellow blogger Kalyan shared the recipe on Fb.
It is his Didu's recipe and like all grandmoms' recipes are, is very lovable.
This very loved fish curry and rice always helps to bring a sense of calm in me.
This is a very easy macher jhol recipe. In fact the easiest you can come across, ever, I guess.
Rohu fish - 4 pieces, cleaned and marinated with salt + turmeric
Potato - 1 medium
Parwal / Potol / Pointed gourd - 3 pieces
Haldi / Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp
Dhaniya / Coriander powder - 1 tbsp
Jeera / Cumin powder - 1 tsp
Jeera / Cumin seeds - ½ tsp
Whole red chillies - 2, broken
Salt - to taste
Water - for gravy
Cooking oil - 1 tbsp ( I use mustard oil )
How to :
Fry the fish lightly.
I fry fish to a crisp on both sides only when I am making the rich Kalia. For this curry, however, I just let it into the smoking hot oil, lowered the flame, turned it once and brought it out.
Cut the potatoes and the parwal in similar pieces.
Soak the red chilli + jeera + dhaniya + haldi powder in a little water.
Heat oil in a heavy bottomed wok / kadahi.
Add the jeera + whole red chillies.
Fry for a while on high heat.
Now add the soaked masala paste + water + salt.
Cover and cook till the vegetables are done.
Remove cover and add the fish pieces and slit green chillies.
Cover and simmer for 10 more minutes.
Here is a shot my lunch plate with this light Rui macher jhol.
Serve it steaming hot. All you will need is a squirt of fresh lemon juice and a green chilli on the side.
I did have some salad and a Aamer ambol too.
There is a crisis in the family and I'll be leaving shortly to be with them.
Hence will be away from my kitchen for a while.
But I'll be back next month with many more recipes.
Stay with me, dear readers.
Don't miss my list of other recipes using the Rohu fish or the Rui maach -