The Batchanam Diaries by Ishwarya S

A gorgeous Bangalore morning, coupled with the chirping of birds, the nip in the air and a sweet smell wafting about from the kitchen. A little kid woke up to this and made her way to the kitchen sleepily. As she rubbed her eyes, she noticed Amma gently mixing butter with rice flour that was flavoured with a hint of hing. Amma lovingly prepped the flour to make seedais. Simultaneously, she was checking on the sugar syrup to ensure perfect “padham” or consistency. The little girl sat there mesmerised just looking at the process. She then tugged her Ammas sari offering help. Amma touched her hair and said  yes. She held the baby’s hand and guided her to knead the “maavu” or dough for the kai murukkus.

The little one was me. I learnt the nuances of traditional methods of snack and sweet preparations from the super talented ladies at home, primarily my mum. In today’s fast world, we pay and pick our festive titbits. We have forgotten the awesome feast this entire process would provide to our senses. I can close my eyes to feel the soft buttery dough, the smell of pachai karpuram, the crackle of crisp snacks, the look of the perfectly coloured sweets and the heavenly taste of fresh hot ghee laden delights. Sigh!! Such a pity our little ones don’t get to go through this gastronomic extravaganza..

A promise I’ve made to myself is not to deny my kid any of this. It may be time consuming but there is nothing to beat the taste!
A huge thank you and pranaams to my Paatis, Amma, Chittis for making my world a lot more sweeter and closer to heaven!


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