My WOW moment story always comes to my mom for a simple reason that today when the world recognizes me as a food blogger and a Chef, the entire credit goes to my mom who not only encouraged me to cook but also helped me by teaching her own recipes which she had mastered over the years. Being the eldest child, I was lucky to spend more time with her in the kitchen than my other siblings. As luck would have had it, I was attracted to cooking at the age of 10 and she held my hand gently and started teaching me the basics of cooking, which started from boiling eggs and making tea, shopping for basic groceries needed in the kitchen. She used to take me around and showed me how to identify fresh vegetable and meat needed for home cooking. She also showed me how to check the freshness of the raw products we buy from the market and I knew her as the best bargainer while doing so. Over the period I graduated to making full meals at the age of 15 and over the next 5 years she ensured the art of cooking was perfected by me. She used to personally taste whatever I cooked and made it a point to criticize wherever I wronged. Eventually I was ready to serve a first full cooked meal to some specially invited guests and I still remember the day.
When the guests arrived, I could see that she was tensed and as the meal was served I could feel that she was praying that no one complains. By God’s grace and with her teachings, the meal had come out excellent but I was Breathless when the guests picked up the food items one after the other to taste. My WOW moment came when all the dishes in the veg and non-veg section were praised by the guests and they were very happy that without any formal training I had managed to cook at par with a restaurant chef. I could see the tears of joy in her eyes when the praises flowed in. I still remember how I got up from my chair and thanked all for coming in. Then I made it a point to thank her for all that she had taught me over the last 10 years and I saw the look of satisfaction in her eyes. A teacher, a well-wisher who had taught all she knew about cooking in the kitchen and had probably not expected anything in return, so those few words of Thank you Mom were enough for her. I am glad I learned what all I could from her in those days because soon I moved out due to job transfers etc. and we did not spend time with each other as we had spent in my early days. Last year in September 2014 she passed away due to cancer and suddenly I realized the importance of a mother in every individual’s life. I am thankful that I was the lucky one to have learned so much from her. I pray to God to keep her happy wherever she is up there and I am sure she is watching me and my work from there as a bright star and thinking of the WOW moment of my life too.
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