On Genetic Theory for Food Preference

I have a theory..it is called Ambal’s Genetic Theory for Food Preference.

Fear not. I won’t use fancy words like alleles, zygote, epigenesis, gemmules in my theory.

I will use simple words to make it easy for you to understand and appreciate the theory. The theory goes like this.

Ambal’s Genetic Theory for Food Preference – The mom’s food preference genes is passed on to the second child.

That is it.

Don’t pull a smart aleck on me and ask “How do you know?”
I have proof. Ari loves the stuff that I love; drumstick sambar, gobi manchurian, tapioca pudding, coffe, chai etc.

What is your theory on food and/or food preference?

Post Thanksgiving Thanks

Thanksgiving break week started off very rough.

I thank you all for sending your positives vibes to Ari (who was sick and in the ER last week) and the family.I do believe those positive vibes work. Because, thanks to all the positive vibes, our week did progress well and we spent the last few days surrounded by the warmth and cheer of friends and family.

Despite my ever present restraint in indulging with food, I ate more than I should have….but, that is only because the food was served with so much heartfelt love and so much care. My SIL Rema’s mango-fruit based dessert, my new friend Uma’s elaborate spread of vegetable curries, and aloo paratha, my girlfriend Sukanya’s bhel and vadai (which reminded my so much of Mommy’s vadai) and filter coffee, my enthu friend CK’s pulav, my buddy Vijaya’s sweet potato casserole (which is queen-of-all-cooks Jyotsna’s and her daughter Ashlesha tried and tested recipe; thanks to Kaushik for baking the casserole in Rohit’s oven), my neighbor Rohit’s besan laddoos and more.

Now, as if all that was not a big enough list to be grateful for…just as I was getting ready to call his weekend a wrap, our next door neighbor’s 10 year old nephew (visiting from New Jersey) who became buddies with the boys….brought over some fresh guacamole that he had made. (side note: He had left the huge avacado seed in the guacamole and when I asked him why….he quipped that it was to prevent the guacamole from browning too quickly. I am just so impressed with kids…they know so much….stuff that I don’t know!)

If you think I ate so much that my stomach hurt…that is quite not right. Because, my stomach hurt more from the non-stop laughter.

I am so grateful for this break and all the folks who made it the most memorable Thanksgiving ever (I know….I know…I say that ever year. But, truly, it was memorable).

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving too.

Now, the race to the end of 2017. Just few more weeks….and than we can all take a break during the holidays. Hang in there.

Curry Leaves have Medicinal Properties

If you think that gold, diamond and platinum are some of the most precious things on the planet, you haven’t gotten a small bottle of homemade karuveppilai podi (curry leaves powder) from your girl friends yet.

Curry leaves have medicinal properties – packed with carbohydrates, fiber, calcium, phosphorous, irons and vitamins like vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin E. Nothing can beat the fresh flavor (taste, smell and texture) of homemade curry leaves powder.


Making karuveppilai podi is an elaborate process. First, you spread the curry leaves and let it dry until all the moisture is gone. Then, you remove the curry leaves from the stalk and dry roast in small batches with spices. Finally, you dry grind it with salt Does that sound like a simple three step process? It is not.

The small bottle of homemade karuveppilai podi that I was gifted by my girl friends contains 1000s of curry leaves and several hours of labor of love.

Next time you hear buzz words like “clean”, “green” or “precious”, think a small bottle of homemade karuveppilai podi. It is the cleanest, greenest energy on the planet. Plus, it comes with more care and love than I can return in my lifetime. Blessed and thankful for it every micro-second of my life.

How would You React to the Wrong Order Delivered?

I pride myself on being very low maintenance in many things and kind in many ways. Except things like integrity, quality of work etc. I am a sucker for strict adherence to these values because of my Grandpa’s strong influence on me during my early years.

So, on most things I am very low maintenance. For example, food. Serve food to me cold, salty and all messed up and I will still complement you. Because, I appreciate the great effort and beautiful heart behind it.

I also have a very high tolerance level – both physical and mental.

Think physical tolerance – 2 boys without epidural, bagging Mt. Whitney peak at 14,500 feet 22 miles round trip in 19 hours with 25 lbs backpack.

My mental tolerance beats my physical tolerance in many ways.

Side note: That said, my BS tolerance is waning very rapidly as I age. And, guess what? I am at an age (and given my freakishly high intuition levels and ever growing knowledge of the brain, body language and psychology) when I can spot BS from several miles away. When I spot BS, I won’t make a big hue and cry. I simply don’t have the time for that anymore.

Anyways, with that in the background, let me narrate the happenings from today afternoon.

I had the most wonderful lunch date with a new friend.

I ordered basil thai fried rice. The waiter was a new guy at the restaurant and told us he was learning the ropes. My friend and I were deep in conversation as he brought a veggie curry with white rice. I noticed it. But, let it slide.

Because, I am on a see-food diet.
I see food.
I eat it in moderation.
And, appreciate it. That is my Dad’s teaching. He always told me to be thankful for food…whatever form it was in.

So, I enjoyed the pow wow and the chow!

But, here is a thought that remains with me. I could have very kindly told the waiter that he brought in the wrong order…and that I was ok with it….and gently warned him to be more careful next time. By doing that simple act, I could have saved him the disappointment (or even the angry complaint!) of a future customer.

There is no black and white….only shades of grey. 
There is no right or wrong in any of our experiences. 
They are just life experiences.

I am curious. What would YOU have done and why YOU would have done that? Be cognizant of the fact that most of us make these little decisions in life in auto pilot mode. We don’t over think.

What is your first gut reaction?

Food is One of the Most Important Connectors

Food is one of the most important connectors.

Food connects generations.
Food connects friends.
Food connects family.

Doesn’t the aroma, the texture, the taste, the sight of food always remind us of days long gone? Of meals shared together many years ago. That memory of togetherness stays with us….still fresh…like we are in present there at the dining table with friends and family.

May be it is the aroma of brewing coffee that reminds us of Amma’s filter coffee.
May be it is the way I try to make mom’s recipe of parrapu podi for the boys.
May be it is the way I try my best to do karthigi adai to keep my MIL’s recipe alive.
May be it is my attempt at making sabodana khichdi today evening.

It reminds me of my lovely girl friend Gargi. She makes the best sabodana khichdi on the planet. She is also got a few more recipes up her sleeves. Her grandma’s recipe of mouth watering ladoo and her spicy rajma curry are to die for.

Bon Appetite!