Coils of ‘mogra’ in a banana leaf at every table setting: The minute I heard this, I decided to copy the idea. It was stunning in its simplicity and beauty–
When Indians of the previous generation wanted to show their love, they handmade something for the guest. Now, cooking while your guests are around only works if you have one of those Western-style open kitchens. Most of our apartments have dinky kitchens that don’t lend themselves to shared cooking experiences. But a version of this Indian habit of hand-feeding can happen.
Why not roll a paan for your guests as they depart? You will have to teach yourself a new skill. Like an ice-cream counter, have them choose flavours (and make sure that there are basic versions for those who don’t like paan, like a chocolate wrap), and hand-feed them by popping it into their mouths. This also works with golgappas.
Hand-feeding your guests is sexy and Indian. It reeks of hoary tradition and yet, because it is done so little these days, will surprise and delight your guests.
Entertaining is an act of love, a way to break the monotony of life. In today’s efficient, time-constrained world, we all have taken to “sourcing” the best products and brands to save ourselves time and the trouble of thinking. But going that extra mile to root your parties in the Indian “context”, as Ramanujan calls it, not only makes them memorable, it also—I am convinced—feeds your soul and spirit.
First Published: Fri, Feb 23 2018. 02 49 PM IST