JATAR ANNAPOORNAS

By Dr Rama Kulkarni

Around 2015, Nita and I had talked of putting together some Jatar family recipes for the blog. I thought I would get the ball rolling by contributing some from my archives along with a few associated memories. It is a special feeling to be able to share some vintage recipes, some over a hundred years old now.

I grew up in a family where good cooking was relished and appreciated. My mother, Neelima Raddi, and grandmother (Indira Bhajekar née Jatar) were busy women with careers outside the home, but also seemingly blessed with magic powers by the goddess of food, Annapoorna. They could transform the simplest of ingredients into a delectable meal in minutes.

recipes
Indira Bhajekar’s notes

When I was in college I decided to write down some family recipes, starting by asking my beloved grandmother. We had a grand old time laughing together as she dictated them, especially at the sometimes baffling instructions for amounts of ingredients, which had me pestering her for specifics. Like all seasoned cooks (couldn’t resist that one!), she rarely needed to measure anything and everything was by “andaaz” or approximation born of experience. I would sternly tell her that “a bit“ and “a little” and “plenty” were not exactly going to be helpful directions to a novice. One recipe included cinnamon sticks. How much? As much as you can afford – came her quick, mischievous reply.

Whenever I visited her home, I loved looking through the collections of old photos and letters. Exploring an ancient cabinet, I came across one of her notebooks filled with handwritten recipes Continue reading “JATAR ANNAPOORNAS”