i always think i have a fairly well-stocked spice rack, until my mom comes over to cook with me.
this is sort of how our phone call went, prior to last weekend’s visit:
mom: do you want me to bring over any spices for the curry, or do you have everything?
me: no, no, i have everything.
mom: do you have rampe? curry leaves?
me: yes, still in the fridge. (from the last time she brought them over to cook with me.)
mom: coconut milk?
me: yes… (a lie. made mental note to buy some.)
mom: roasted curry powder?
me: yes! i have that for sure. (so proud of myself.)
mom: cardamom? or cardamom powder?
me: i think so… (scanning the pantry with my mind, trying to remember last time i could have possibly used either.)
mom: are your green chilies fresh?
me: wait, do i need cardamom or cardamom powder? (adding it to the mental grocery list. scared to ask if i need coconut milk or coconut milk powder at this point.)
mom: either is fine.
mom: i can bring both.
mom: what about the other things? bring them too?
me: ok. except the curry powder! i have that.*
pretty sure i could hear the disappointment in that last comment. i could just be projecting, though.
let’s make an effort to get these and the things you’ll see in the upcoming recipes into our pantries, shall we? they’re inexpensive, last a long time, can all be bought from the same (south asian) grocery store, and we won’t have to wait for our moms to come over before we can make a quick curry. ok then.
(*yes, i got the roasted curry powder from my mom on a previous visit too. but she didn’t roast it! she was gifted it, already roasted, from her friend! it’s the circle of spice…)