Happy Mother’s day to all the mothers in Australia, India and United States. Well United Kingdom the day it decided to rule the world made it a point by saying everything British would be unique. So, UK celebrates Mother’s day on a different day. Importance of mother in our life is not for one significant day but rather perennial.
I have an objection to polarised thinking ever since I understood rationale analysis.
Growing up in a household where I was woken up by my dad while my mom was still asleep. I found it hard to see the distinction between a mum’s work or a dad’s work. The only thing I could differentiate was between mum’s anger and dad’s anger.
I well receive the empathy for not having a mother. But also put up a strong personality which is reflective of my father nature. One half of my life I was raised by my mother and the other half I am being raised my father. Ironically I feel I am still being raised by my father. He still takes care of my financial decisions. He still fulfils my unreasonable demands. I weirdly feel that I never grew up.
It’s been written several times in my previous posts how my dad used to take over the kitchen on weekends. He used to take care of grocery. I have seen mum and dad execute the same set of responsibilities and swapping them.
Taking a step back to look at my dad’s childhood. My grandmother had 7 children. Each time she gave birth to a child. The elder one automatically became the pseudo adult-in-charge of the younger one. Every son is very much capable of rearing the cows, washing clothes and cooking food. The seeds of gender neutrality had been sown into each of them implicitly by their mum (my grandmother).I generally giggle at the thought of people saying gender neutrality is a modern day social experiment.
My father was here when I delivered my son. In most cases it is the mother who does that for her daughter. My father who is 60+ years old is very much capable of bathing my new-born, lulling him to sleep, cook a meal for the whole house because I am exhausted after marathon nursing a new-born, do school runs, look for fresh produce, turn my apartment into a mini terrace garden and repair all the ‘n’ things broken in the house. I did not see him once crumbling under this massive pressures. Some could get exasperated at the thought of a man doing so many versatile roles which for ages have been polarised for reasons unknown. Touch Wood !!
There is a downside too because when you are so much influenced by your parent you tend to draw comparisons between him and your partner. Your partner is under undue pressure from all the comparison made.
I have my Disney princess bedspreads from my first-born which is still in great shape and adorns our bed. The pink knitted blanket again from my first-born which warms up my son during cold winter days. We read good books and do not think princesses are not from Venus while the avengers from mars. But all this would qualify only for efficient expenditure.
I just wish it was not about ‘blue’ vs ‘pink’ or ‘cinderella’ vs ‘spiderman’. A gender neutral parenting for me means not stereotyping roles for mum and dad. There should be a drive to carve one’s identity and find their own comfort zone irrespective of his or her sex. Most importantly respect your child’s choice and give them a thought to germinate upon. Rest my case….
Rather than just begrudgingly allowing our children to play with “opposite gender” toys, the gendery parenting paradigm would encourage us to give children the language to think critically about gender binaries and gendered hierarchies.
All through my pregnancy I craved for a particular dish but the ingredients were not readily available in the UK so I never got the chance to have it before, But here comes by dad who wanders every corner to find me Malabar Spinach or ‘Poi’. I was ecstatic when I saw him hold that bunch and whip up my childhood favourite dish ‘Poi Chinguri’.
Malabar spinach (Basella alba or Basella rubra) is not a true spinach, but rather a climbing vine in a class by itself. The leaves and stem contain mucilage, so it can appear slimy when broken off the vine. This mucilage is a great source of soluble fiber, much like pectin in apples.In the heat of summer, spinach, lettuce, kale, collards, and chard all turn bitter, bolt, or dry out. It is Malabar spinach which thrives in summer.
- 100g small prawns
- 2 bunch Malabar Spinach
- 1 tbsp yellow mustard seeds
- 1 tbsp black mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 thin green chilli
- 1 tsp turmeric
- salt to taste
- Refined oil for cooking
- Wash the Malabr spinach properly under running water. Then cut the leaves and the stalk into tiny chunks for further cooking.
- If using fresh prawns then clean. Marinate the prawns with salt and turmeric powder.
- Sack the mustard seeds in 2 tbsp water for 20 minutes before grinding. Then grind them along with garlic, cumin and green chilli into a fine paste.
- In a deep bottomed pan, add 1 tbsp of oil and add your prawns and fry them. Then add your mustard paste and fry it briefly for 1 minute. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil.
- Then add your malabar spinach and sauté for another 1minute.
- Boil it for another 4-5 minutes until the oil separates,
- Garnish it with coriander leaves and serve it with piping hot rice.
Also, the dish is cooked with mustard oil. But since edible mustard oil is banned in Uk, I have used refined oil.
The consistency of the gravy purely depends on your personal preference. Some like it soggy while some like it thin. Take your call,