How I Learned to Cook: Watching Mum Make Kadhi

Back Where It All Began…

This. This is where it all began for me. Of this, I can’t be more sure. It’s habitual at this point. Following my mum into the kitchen whenever she’s going to cook. I have always been enthralled by watching others cook and that love can be traced back to watching her. 

She, like many desi mums, possesses a magical touch. A touch that literally extends to all her senses. She is able to tell what’s missing in any given dish by any of the following: taste, smell, look, texture. And there really isn’t any point arguing with or even doubting that touch. Instead, I watch her, hoping to understand where it comes from. The hope is that, by watching her and finding the source, I may be able to generate that power from within myself, for when I cook, which is very often these days. 

Or at least synthesise it. 

It is Nothing Short of A Superpower. 

Being able to detect what’s missing or needed with the barest of efforts. That’s what I want. Not just that but to be able to make anything without worrying about how much to put on. Feel the food and let it guide you rather than some, overly complicated, often arbitrary set of measures and rules. 

The woman rarely misses a beat. I should know, I’ve watched her cook all my life and been the trusty taster when needed. No matter how much I watch, no matter how many times I’ve seen her make the same exact dish, it leaves me in awe every time. Perfectly cooked, enough to leave everyone in the home, utterly well-fed. So I figured, I’d take you guys along this time. 

Kadhi: What you’ll need!

For the kadhi

  • Yogurt 1kg
  • Besan (chickpea flour/ gram flour) 4-5 tablespoons 
  • Turmeric (haldi) ½ teaspoon
  • Green chillies, however many you can take.  
  • Salt 1½ teaspoons 
  • Water 3 glasses to start. Adjust if necessary. 

For the tempering (bhagar)

  • Oil 7 tablespoons 
  • Red chillies as many you can take 
  • 1 ½ medium onion 
  • Mustard seeds (Rai Dana) ½ teaspoons 
  • Curry leaves (Kadhi Pata) 12 leaves. 

Note: amounts are an approximation. 

As usuals, the method and instructions can be found on my Instagram, in the highlight: Kadhi with Mummy!