Tools of the Trade

That little guy on the left of your screen is what you'll see, in varying sizes, all over India, and you might even have one at home. I think my grandmother did. My mom never fussed with them. For a reason. According to my husband, when he was growing up in India there would be all kinds of public service announcements on television, warning housewives of the dangers of exploding pressure cookers. I'm not kidding. The little pressure cooker gets used in our house on exactly two occassions: when my mother in-law is visiting and never. Before I bought my big, wonderful, Cuisinart electronic cooker from Costco, I had all kinds of trouble with that little demon of a thing. It would spit, fizz, cover my stovetop in starchy ickiness, and I was half-afraid most of the time that it was going to blow up. Unless you are very brave or wise in the art of pressure-cooking, I recommend buying the electronic kind. I love mine. Love it.

This cunning little pan is called a tava, and as you can see, mine is much loved. Tavas are paper-thin (well, almost). While you'll make parathas in a standard frying pan, a tava is absolutely essential for roti.

This is my kadai, which is also much-loved. I know it looks kind of like a wok, but it isn't. It is much, much thicker than a wok. That's because it's designed for deep-frying, but because of its shape, it allows you to deep-fry with a minimum amount of oil. Genius! Kadais come in all shapes and sizes, and while not strictly necessary, they are useful things.

No comments:

Post a Comment