Date: 6/26/2012 11:41:00 AM
My expertise with cooking is limited to making a good cup of filter coffee, crispy dosai (provided the batter is already prepared) and rice (rice cooker). Whenever I am alone at home for a couple of days, my wife makes sure to leave the fridge stocked with batter, thugaiyal, rasam so that I can manage a decent meal for myself.
A couple of weeks ago, I had this sudden desire to try my hand at making rasam. I had been tasting rasam forever in my life, so it couldn't be that tough to make it. A ball of tamarind soaked in water, a pinch of salt and chilli powder to taste, cut a few tomatoes and boil them all - rasam is ready. So I thought. The first attempt ended up in a dark liquid which tasted like pure tamarind water. So I threw it down the sink, and reduced the amount of tamarind. This time the result was sour hot water with some tomatoes floating. No one told me that I had to thaalichu kottufy with chilli, black pepper and mustard.
By this time my wife returned and she shouted at me for making a mess of the kitchen and trying my hand at something which I can never master. I got angry. I said, "Let's bet. In 3 weeks time I will make a proper rasam with fried potatoes." She laughed and said, "Impossible". Now things got serious. I challenged her to take up something which she wasn't skilful at do it in three weeks. I asked her to drive the car to her office and back. (She had just started going to driving classes). She refused saying our bets shouldn't cause damage to unrelated parties.
"Ok then, why don't you write a poem in three week's time?"
"This is unfair. I don't know the grammar for writing poems."
"No need of grammar, just write free verse. Write a smart sentence and press enter at a couple of places, your poem is ready"
"Yeah. It will be as good as your rasam".
So, you ask who won the challenge? The secret of a successful marriage is to not let the other person lose.