|My mummy's top class chilli chicken|
Then, at 17, I moved to Bangalore for college and was treated to five years of hostel food by "Babu bhaiyya" (the girls' hostel's Mallu "chef"). Right after, I moved to London to start work as a corporate lawyer. Lunch was always in the office canteen - so lots of flavourless sandwiches, roast-chicken-that-tasted-like-cardboard and make believe Indian food (sagalooo, beef madras (that one still makes me laugh - I don't think anyone in Madras has ever come across the phenomenon that is beef madras) etc.). A combination of these experiences has made me an ardent devotee of my mother's cooking. Food-wise (and otherwise too I suppose), I have never been happier in London than I was when my parents visited me in the summer earlier this year.
My mother is a trickster of a cook. If she can use a shortcut and hoodwink her audience, oh yes, she will. But she is wise enough to desist from tricks for some recipes. Her chill chicken recipe is one of them. It is a sure winner in any dinner party. I am sure it would have been a sure winner at my place even if there were no guests, but this is the sort of recipe that involves a fair bit of effort (and quite a bit of oil) and was therefore usually reserved for external audiences.
These are pictures that I took of her critically acclaimed chilli chicken on one of my recent trips home. Enjoy!
|Sauteed onion and green peppers/"capsicum" as it is called in India|
|The finished product bathed in Delhi's sunlight|