When Death Befalls

I often think about death, and wonder how would others describe me when I am gone. While I hope others have nice things to say about me -- they always say only nice things about the dead somehow -- this is what I would like them to know about me. * This morning Anubhuti Krishna, …

Makkhan Malai – The Desi Soufflé

That Girl In Muddy Boots

Come winter and the streets of the old towns of North India – particularly Uttar Pradesh – reverberate with the cries of the makhanwala. He comes every morning on his cycle and calls out to the sleepy residents in his trademark style, compelling them to throw off their thick quilts and run towards their gates to claim their dose of frothy heaven.

Soft and fluffy, makhan malai is neither butter nor cream as the name suggests, but a soufflé made up of milk foam. What makes it all the more special is the delicate dew of the winter mornings, which is an essential ingredient of the soufflé: no dew, no makhan malai.

Having grown up with the calls of the makhanwala in the sleepy towns of U.P., I am particularly biased towards the dessert. Even though there are versions of it found in the lanes of Old Delhi that…

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On Playing Mother.

My mother never dressed up. She did not believe in makeup or vanity, or even being overtly conscious about one's appearance. And that's always been her style -- hair a little out of place, sari always without a pin, dupatta mopping the floor, bindi always crooked. I never had a problem with it, in fact …

Making of the Muri Mix or Laiyya Mixture.

Muri. Murmura. Laiyya. Mamra. This humble puffed rice has as many names as it has uses: soak and make poha out of it (try it!), Grind it and make sattu with it, fry it and make a snack out of it, mix it up with other fun things to make jhaalmuri or bhelpuri, or, as …

एक खँडहर की कहानी। (Hiraeth)

इन दरवाज़ों के पीछे कभी ज़िन्दगी बसा करती होगी, इस दहलीज़ के अंदर कभी महफ़िलें सजा करती रहीं होंगी; इनके आँगन में कभी गूंजा करती होगी बच्चों की किलकारी, कभी नानी, कभी दादी, कभी प्यारी सी बुआ हमारी। इनकी चौखट पर कभी चाची की प्यासी आँखें चाचा का इंतज़ार करती रहीं होंगी, इनकी दलानो पर …