Perhaps it was the reality  that with each year that goes by, my mother has one less year on earth and I have one less year with her and my inability to forgive her, so I could cherish whatever little time she has on earth makes me feel miserable every year when Amma’s birthday approaches. This year was no different. Last weekend when I went for Indian grocery shopping, I noticed a packet of Aval ( Beaten rice) on the shelf.

When I was growing up, if Amma was home when I returned from school, She would make Aval nanachathu as a snack. I am never known for my patience and Amma used to get irritated with me because I refused to wait a few minutes for the Aval to soak up the moisture from the freshly grated coconut. She would mutter “Appante makal alle, jathya gunam thoothal poovumo?) ( like father, like daughter).

I haven’t eaten Aval since I went to Bangalore to do medicine. I thought I will make Aval nanachathu and at least I could smell the familiar smell and feel close to my mother.

I came home all excited. I opened the aval packet, took it out, put in a colander to wash. A part of me knew you don’t wash Aval, There was no way I could eat something without washing it. Beaten rice now looked  soaked rice. I wanted to salvage it, so I quickly placed the soaked sad looking aval in my muram, hoping to dry it in the sun. I now own something that is neither beaten rice, nor soaked rice. I don’t even know what to call it anymore.

I am not sure why is that I could eat unwashed aval  without any qualms as a child, yet as an adult I can’t.

14 thoughts on “Idiot.

  1. It is neither beaten rice nor soaked aval. The exact condition of your relationship with your mother. Put grated coconut and sarkara to the unwashed aval, mix it. Sarah, you will be the old school girl again.

    • bipin: I have to wait a few more months for the trip to the indian shop..vangicha pakkattu muzhuvan kazhuki, veylathu vechu unakki, kolam akki.

  2. In Bangalore, there are two kinds of aval – one is thicker than the one we get in Kerala and it can stand the washing (I know it because I wash it too) – you just have to be quick. Just find the right aval next time…

    • URT: Avoo, ashvasam. I thought I was the only one wanting to wash aval before eating it..I will look for the thicker version next time I go to the Indian shop

    • URT: My son is not well, so I made him chicken soup this morning. I added few tbl spn of the previously soaked and dried aval to the soup.. it kind of looked like barley, not as plump..but still with a bite 🙂 The only other thing I can think of making is, ari unda..I am going to grind it, mix it with icing sugar and add some hot ghee..

      • I generally make ghee from butter – this time i burnt it a bit. It now has a mild burnt flavour – can you think of anything i can do with it? I am still making dosas with it – anything else? 😀

        • URT: the first few times I tried to make Ghee from Butter when I was living in Canada, I burned it every single time. It took me few attempts before I figured it wasn’t me at fault, it was the butter that was low quality ( high milk solids or something like that which burns quickly) I tried using coffee filter to remove the burned bit, but it was winter time and the whole thing solidified before the filtration could begin 🙂
          If you can remove the burned solids, you could make On cold winter days when I am really short of time to cook dinner, I make this.

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