A couple of months back, in the early stages of my pregnancy, I was not into food all that much– SHOCKING for those of you who know me well. I was nervous about how I’d feel about the food once we got to India because I had developed quite the aversion to rice, and rice is very much a staple food here. Today was the big test.
Somewhere during the 5th to 7th month of a woman’s pregnancy, there is a tradition in some of the villages, and it is mainly about rice. The mommy-to-be is dressed in a black sari, adorned in special bangles, and fed many kinds of rice. It has something to do with the fact that pregnant women generally have cravings for different kinds of food/flavors, and these rices should help satisfy the cravings.
JP’s Aunt Kasthuri decided it would be her gift to me (and to all of us, really) to make this special meal for me. She even bought me a beautiful black sari, but I couldn’t wear it today because the blouse is still being stitched. (I’ve heard there are three sets of bangles as well!) So this morning I spent a few hours at the gold store with James and his parents buying the wedding necklace (mangal sutra) for Anita and looking at wedding bands for James. Then it was time to head home for the big feast.
Our rice feast included: Tamarind Rice, Tomato Rice, Coconut Rice, Lemon Rice, Curry Powder Rice, Sweet Pongal Rice, Curd Rice, and some chips, mangoes, and two special chutneys on the side. I’m happy and thankful to say that each and every bit of our lunch was fantastically delicious. It was really fun to try all the different varieties and discuss which one was everyone’s favorite. I’m not positive, but I think mine might have been the Lemon Rice. It was a very tough competition. Aunt Kasthuri is a great cook!