That's the book "This Book Makes Me Cook" chose to read for July. Set in Mumbai, Thrity Umrigar's book is a story of ties that bind a widow and her household help of many years. The book draws you in with it's mature and sensitive portrayal of these two lives, the complex relationships that divide them and the events that bring this divide to fore. What made the book a bigger hit for me was that all of it was so real : the Parsi household, the slum Bhima lives in and the very vividly described Chowpatty.
In fact, the scene at Chowpatty, where both the employer Sera and the maid Bhima are at equal footing, and where the story finally unfolds, is my favorite in the book. Which is why I decided to make the Bhelpuri both women were eating at Chowpatty. But Bhelpuri, that mishmash of ingredients that makes a delicious whole, is street food I never think of making at home. It's not even a recipe really, for all you need to do is get all the 10 odd ingredients and mix them up. Rather than go find all the things that go into making a bhelpuri, I decided to take advantage of the fact that I can get Bhelpuri at Chowpatty just like the women in the book. And that's exactly what I did.
Here's this month's inspiration to eat - Bhelpuri from Mahalaxmi Bhelpuri-wala:
Our guy gets ready to make bhelpuri:
And here it is, all ready to eat:
I totally enjoyed reading and eating for the club this month. So did other members, who cooked up a Parsi feast among themselves.
- Dee made Akuri, the traditional Parsi scrambled eggs breakfast.
- Sweatha made Tofu Akuri.
- Aqua made Vegetable Dhansak.
- Jaya, our newest member, made mint tea.
And in August, we are reading Pomegranate Soup by Marsha Mehran. If you would like to join us, leave a comment here and I will get back to you with details.