Aam ka Murabba & Ta Ta Thaiyya
Contributed by: Shalini Somnath
Come summers and almost every Indian household transforms into some sort of a mega kitchen…churning out pickles, papads, jams and murabbas . The variety is simply mind-boggling, thanks to India’s rich diversity and obsession with food. We love our food, especially Maa ke haath ka (made by mom), right?
Coming back to Indian summers and multiplicity, my family is actually a mini India in itself. Those of you who read my first article will know that I have mixed south Indian roots. My father hails from Kerala and my mother from Tamil Nadu. I have a Kannadiga husband and mausa jees and mami jees from Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh. Have lost count of bhabhis from Bengal, Maharashtra and Jijus from Goa and UP. You get the idea, we personify national integration quite literally. You must be wondering why I got deviated to diversity while talking of food…
Be patient … let me tell you
Owing to this connect with all of India, our kitchen has always been a multi-cuisine server, same as those multi-starrer films, cannot figure out which actor we like the most. Right from Kanni Manga Achar (tender mango pickle) to Manga Thokku (another variety of mango pickle popular in Tamil Nadu), from Hari Mirch ke Tipore to Aam ka Murabba, from Sabudana papad to Potato wafers, from Kurdai to Khichiya Papad, everything gets made with lots of love and loads of laughter.
Now we have grown up and joined the chef side of the story. But back in the day, we eagerly waited for our holidays so that Maa starts making these yummy treats and we start consuming them. All of us had our favourites and mine has always been Aam ka Murabba. Made from the ‘larger than life’ Rajapuri mangoes, the murabba was the apple of my eye. What makes it more interesting is the way it is made, slow cooked in the sun for more than three days. Mind you we had sustainable ways of cooking long before ‘sustainability’ became a fashion. The wait made it more desirable and tasty. Intezaar ka phal murabba hota hai doston!
Usually while this murabba was getting ready under the sun, we would be engaged in our singing and dance classes. Masterjee ke Sa Re Ga Ma ke beech mein murabbe ki khushboo and Guruji ke Ta Ta Thaiyya ke saath murabbe ke swaad ka ehsaas…
Isn’t food so much more than just something to fill your stomach with? It is the stories, the memories and the keepsakes. It represents the small joys that last a lifetime and become a legacy. Most families have at least one special recipe that has been passed on for generations, that Nani ka famous … Dadi ka superhit wala. 100% desi and original.
I can never forget Maa’s murabba with the Ta Ta Thaiyya. So what’s your favourite food memory?
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