Updated: Jun 20, 2022
An ode to bondas in the rain and the hands that make them
Nothing more beautiful than the hands that make food, no?
It was a cloudy evening, and Cavery returned from school. She was hungry and asked her Ajji for Rs. 10/- to buy a snack from the nearby store. But, her Ajji, who usually loved saying yes to Cauvery, refused and said
"Have some patience, and I shall cook a healthy and delicious snack for you".
Then, with enthusiasm, Cavery said, "I want to do it with you!"
Ajji replied, as elders always do, "Go, remove your uniform, freshen up and come to the kitchen" Cavery was so happy. She hugged her Ajji, kissed her, and said, "I shall be back soon, Ajji; I love you!"
As she came down the stairs, the aroma of fresh coconut oil was wafting out of the kitchen. It was delightful. Before tuning into her favourite cartoon series, she peeped into the kitchen.
Ajji was peeling potatoes for some fresh aloo bonda. She became so happy and said: "Ajji, it's Aloo Bonda and it's my favourite".
To that, Ajji said, "Yes. Do you know that oil making your bonda comes from a 2000-year-old tradition?"
In disbelief, Cauvery exclaimed, "2000 years old!?"
Ajji told Cauvery how her parents and grandparents had actually used ghanas to make oil. She told Cauvery all about Ghanas and how it is called Kachi-Gani in North India. Ghana is the purest method of oil extraction. It retains the goodness and minerals of the oil while extracting oil from various seeds. Unlike what you find in stores these days, she declared.
"Tell me what kurkure gives you?", Ajji questioned, as she bragged about how her coconut oil not just made tasty bondas, it was also a wonderful source of vitamin E and how it even keeps Cauvery's hair healthy.
Impatient from the tantalizing smell of aloo bondas, Cauvery blurted, "I suppose the bonda is ready" I am so hungry! "
Pipping hot bonds and chili sauce!
Ajji was secretly as excited as her granddaughter for the hot hot bondas! She said, "of course, my darling, let's sit in the garden and have some bondas."
As they sat down to eat, Ajji smiled, content in the knowledge that Cauvery now knew the significance of what we feed our bodies as food.
"Ajji, will you give me a head massage?" asked Cauvery.
Doting on her granddaughter, Ajji said,
"After this, I shall give you a head massage, anyway; tomorrow it's a holiday."