Caramel custard and a haircut!
What’s with the topic – no relation, a common point though- overworked.
Off late have been working late, weekends, cancelling leave and all. Not that I should be happy about it; as my boss had put it a few years back – even donkeys work!!
Being overworked, either you sit and do nothing or you do something different than usual. Nihar came with the idea of cooking and the thought of custard. Custard to me was always the dessert that adjusted to those little empty spaces of stomach yet to be filled after you already had a good feast on the main course. The not so sweet, soft and browny matter has been a favourite.
I always had this limited understanding of food – I prefer to just eat. As I learn though - you appreciate food not when you eat but when you understand what pain it takes to cook a good dish.
Both of us started with our limited understanding, logging on google for help. ‘How to (…and google comes up with some weird suggestions) prepare caramel custard’. We clicked on to Sanjeev Kapoor school of food – a young lady came up on you tube with the recipe. Women are detailed in approach (am not getting into the Mars vs Venus thing) and thanks to some professional work experience, Women, I notice are bit too much detailed. This lady started with the precision of cutting the milk pouch at the right corner, pouring and heating the milk at the right temperature with the right quantity, etc etc… and then came the Oven!! A bachelor pad has some limitations – an Oven was our case.
Chuck it, step 1 again - ‘How to prepare caramel custard without Oven’. As we clicked on you tube link, a guy appeared. Simple technique – take milk, pour it in the vessel, break the eggs in the milk, mix them, mix sugar in few drops of water, heat the sugar till it turns brown and allow it to settle down, then pour the mix on settled sugar, take a large vessel to create steam and put the other vessel so that it can be steamed. Oh yeah – this has guy has to be bachelor – great understanding of the limitations and enough encouragement for other bachelor friends to experiment. So much so, we felt he must have plucked the milk pouch with his teeth rather than using the precision of the scissor to cut at the corner.
Perfect – we start then.
Everything went well – as shown by our Bro on you tube – till the time we reached the Oven stage. We put our pan (a vessel sort, without the abnormal base, which we realized only at the end) in another large vessel so that we create some sort of a steamer. Put on the fire and wait. Wait, wait and wait – Women being precise, I feel, provide that right estimate – Men, I feel, work in range. This Bro of ours, made us believe that the Custard takes no more than 20 mins of steaming –in actual the steaming lasted for over 3 hours!! I would have just given up on the very thought that something meaningful would have come out, but to our delight, the Custard came out perfect. That layer of caramel at the top and the softness was like that at a hotel. Out of shape though, efforts paid off when we tasted dessert next day – delicious. Kudos to the cooks!
What’s so different – I have a haircut every 3 weeks or the 4th week max. This was different though.
I had a meeting next day and did not want to appear shabby at a client meet. But then, could not leave office on time and was thinking of heading right to the saloon when I reach my place. As I was walking past my usual route to Dadar station, there is this fancy new saloon that has come up. I felt it was unisex – I could see a few guys sitting outside hoping for the customer to come in for a haircut. A thing with Men – as I generalize, is that they don’t like spending too much on a haircut. Max 100 bucks – that too is considered pricey. I sensed this place could cost tad more but then I had this exigency. I entered, sat and waited for guy to come in. Nope – a female came in (again guys, this is not a Mars vs Venus thing). I asked her to cut medium– she responded – half inch? C’mon – don’t be so precise, we like range – small, medium or just trim them.
I always wondered what it takes to be patient – my married friends would be more aware- it’s not that a woman who goes to a parlour that takes time – it’s also, as I could infer, about the other woman who is tasked to serve her. This lady was being so precise- she took almost an hour to cut my hair. I can’t sit in that chair usually beyond half hour. She washed my hair, then partitioned them and then cut them half inch every time (she kept measuring each cut with her fingers). She wouldn’t have stopped- I requested her – I was hungry by that time. I usually prefer a head massage as well, not this time – I would have hoped too much from those gentle hands.
Time to pay – a simple haircut – 450 bucks! I know guys what you are thinking- sympathize with me.