My mother-in-law cooks fine Indian food, particularly southwestern and north Indian vegetarian fare. Her magnificent table is exquisitely laid with splendid cutlery and crockery for every meal. She made my first meal in her house as her daughter-in-law to be memorable by adorning every part of the home with beautiful fresh flowers and by serving a lavish meal served on silver platters. Despite the family business occupying most of her day, she runs her home with commendable dexterity and her housekeeping skills are awesome. Her household linen is always fresh and crisp and the lotus blooms in her beautiful garden command attention amidst a host of other charming flowers.
She made this vegetable preparation alongwith a host of other dishes during one of my visits when I was just getting to know her. I found this way of preparing okra/ladyfinger very tasty and unusual. It had very few spices, carom/ajwain seeds being predominant. What these seeds did to the tomato gravy was quite striking. The combination of these seeds with the okra/ladyfinger and tomatoes introduced wonderful flavours and the aroma was quite unique. Known to have digestive and medicinal properties, I was made to eat a lot of ajwain seeds by my mother during the first month after my son was born.
This vegetable preparation also has a special connotation in my life. I prepared it in the afternoon for lunch on the 9th of March this year, just before I went into labour and got the most precious gift in the form of my adorable baby boy.
Serves 4 to 5
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