For a lot of people I know, cooking can be a chore. However, I cook to remember my culture.
When I first came here, I thought it would be really hard to find all the ingredients I need – I packed my bags with spices and pulses – knowing that I would miss these the most. I should’ve known better – these prized possessions were taken from me at the airport and probably thrown into the trash. Here I was, alone and food-less in America – to add – a little embarrassed and phone-less (no network!).
Little did I know that the apartment I had hunted from 7000 miles away would be an 8 min walk away from a Whole Foods and 15 from a Trader Joes, and that I would have Alltown, a 24-7 convenience store 2 mins away! Everywhere I went, I found chole (Chickpeas), rice, rajma (Red kidney beans) and lentils and spices! Indian food was everywhere and I was happy! 🙂
It has become such a fun activity to feed my American friends Indian food made by me – I take pride in sharing the story behind it – that my mom taught me this recipe, or that I haven’t made it half as nice as my mom did, or that we eat this for so and so festival.
Cooking in America makes me happy and it makes me miss home a little less.