It was easy to dislike the new Korean neighbours.
He was an engineer with two adorable children on a yearlong deputation to the Tata Motors factory in Jamshedpur – and his wife was far too slim and stunning.
Inexcusably – they did not socialize. So what if they spoke only Korean.
Impertinently – they were managing without maids as the rest of us were held to ransom by our household helps.
And worst of all – they had dug up the smooth green carpet grass on their front lawn.
Heads were shaken collectively – grim and unforgiving.
Until – Korean brisk walks slowed into leisurely strolls preceded and succeeded by pakoda and puri parties at the neighbour’s houses; slender faces became round, maids were employed who proceeded to victimise them and their front lawn started sprouting napa cabbage that promised to turn into Kimchi.
Dreams of tasting the delectable Mainland China Kimchi (which also turned out to be the national dish of Korea) in the rigid confines of the Steel city dominated minds and everything was forgiven and forgotten.
Salivation threatened to create a mini flood on the Sunday that the jar of Kimchi was finally brought forth.
Apparently dainty fingers (used to stuffing pakodas by the dozens into their respective mouths) lifted the first bits of Kimchi in a show of restraint and popped them into their mouths.
An almost collective scream followed.
Kimchi was supposed to tickle our taste buds with its mildly sweet flavour and lull us into complacently polishing off the whole jar - but the Korean version was spicy enough to call for the fire brigade.
Coughing, spitting, gulping water and fighting over the sugar jar erupted, much to the bewildered unhappiness of Thong-Mei who thought that Indians were the lords of spicy food and so had spiced her Kimchi to please us.
Today’s recipe is a dessert designed to end spice feasts on a sweet note. It is incredibly easy, is ready in jiffy and allows you to bask in the glory of the hard work that you must certainly have put in (never let the people at the table in on kitchen secrets). Try it instantly.
1. Take 1 ½ glasses of milk. Pour it into a bowl.
2. Beat two eggs in another bowl and then mix it into the milk.
3. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar to the mixture.
4. Add 2 tablespoons of Cocoa powder to the mixture. I like my pudding to be intensely chocolatey so I add more and more cocoa until the mixture becomes dark brown. Add cocoa as per your preference of chocolatiness.
5. Taste the mixture. Add more sugar or cocoa if you like.
6. Pour the mixture into a steel tiffin box which has a tight lid. Put on the lid.
7. In a pressure cooker fill water to the depth of about 2 cms. Actually the depth of water would vary depending on the steel box you are using. Basically the water level should be below the level of the rim of the lid.
8. Close the cooker (without the whistle) and heat the water. When steam starts coming out lower the flame and steam for another 15 minutes.
9. Turn off the flame cool the cooker and open the box.
10. Chill the pudding in the refrigerator and dig in.