Monday, March 19, 2018

The secret art of cooking Chowmein

If you have grown up in an Indian household ,
chances are there that you know what Maggi means .

My mother being the seemingly "strict" woman she was,
read up on the bad affects that Maggi masala can have on a child's mental
growth and forbade its purchase into our house.

Though most of the times , I wonder if her strict-ness was just a relative term.
After all , strictness is valid only when the other person takes it seriously.

I , therefore did not like Maggi.
For me it was a mass of yellow lump which some classmates
 would bring in their tiffins.
The whole brouhaha about chasing a hapless kid with Maggi in his box
would only seem silly to me.

Later in life, I did meet a lot of people for whom life seemed to be incomplete without it.

I tried to adjust , I really did .

And then came a time , when I met a roommate who was my namesake .
She came up to me with a novel idea called as "Fried Maggi".

What she cooked that day , was what I had known as Chowmein all my life !

It was apparently her father who used to do his own version of Maggi and she copied it
and now I try my best to reproduce it.

Couple of years down the line , I had almost mastered the art of making Maggi , but chowmein ?
 Not so much.
I tossed and fried the veggies and juliennes of more veggies together before adding the boiled
theories of string and then black & red mixture of various sauces followed.

Namak , swad anusar !

On one such evening as tonight , we went out for dinner .
Found this nice restaurant which had many a reviews on Yelp (Unfortunately , neither I nor my
friends remember its name anymore) .
Which is where , the noodles / Chowmein had cheese in it.

Unlike , PO's father , my secret ingredient is actually an ingredient .

The cheese mixed with olive oil not only enhanced the flavor but made it delectable.

The next time I tried my version of the "Chowmein" , once boiled, I added some shredded cheese to it ..
The cheese soaked in,  while my carrots , beans and shallots sizzled .
Much like salt, it added the necessary "saltiness" . Coupled with pepper it seems to be the best !

After years and years of trying, the secret ingredient was what I've loved and
had since my childhood.

Makes you smile , does'nt it ?






No comments: