A Taste of Home: Moong Ki Dhal

Nani, my grandmother, making dhal

A Taste of Home: Moong Ki Dhal
By Laremy Lee

Despite speaking disparate tongues, food bridges different generations and brings this family together.

“Where did she put it?” my grandmother asked in Sindhi, as she rummaged through the freezer.

“Put what?” I asked my grandmother in English, watching her with curious eyes.

Methi, methi,” she replied.

Methi?” I asked, perplexed. “What’s methi?”

While I’ve heard of this spice, I couldn’t cross-reference its name in Sindhi with its English name, and hence, picture how it looked like.

Biji, biji,” she said, using the Malay term for seeds as she continued rummaging through the freezer.

Methi? Seeds? I thought to myself, puzzled, wondering how I could avert this potential crisis in the kitchen.

Alas, too late. My grandmother sighed dramatically before announcing to no one in particular, her voice slightly muffled by the still-open freezer door: “I don’t know where Shanta put.”

Turning to Google for explanation, I soon found my answer…

(continued…)

Stuff you must read today (Wed, 10 Jul 2013) – The TechNostalgia Edition

For Tara and Lucas, with quite a bit of New Yorker thrown in for good measure.


  • The Evolution of the Web, in a Blink | The New Yorker
    A damn good analytical recount of how web browsing has evolved over time from the perspective of the <blink> HTML tag.
  • EpicMealTime: The Early Days – By Mooky Gwopson | EpicMealTime
    “The next video on the lineup was a self-challenge to smash the shit out of a KFC sandwich that was labeled the Double Down. It was said by the crew at the time that they wanted to make a sandwich so insane, so greasy and delicious that no one would ever pay attention to the KFC creation again…the team created a 2 foot layered sandwich, that when placed side by side with the Double Down, created an embarrassing food vision of Twins, the movie. The EpicMealTime monstrosity smothered the little KFC sandwich. To this day, we are convinced The Colonel stopped selling his puny sammy because of us”.
  • Hello Laptop, My Old Friend | The New Yorker
    “Laptop’s air of general anachronism makes this cultural detritus doubly strange… . His Web syntax is charmingly outmoded: I was a relatively early arrival to Facebook, and the standing bookmark still goes to TheFacebook.com, the site’s Mesozoic incarnation. Two of his three browsers are so out-of-date that Web sites think he is an early smartphone; home pages answer him with giant type and stripped-down formatting, as if yelling, at full voice, into his digital ear. The Internet has a cruel nose for obsolescence”.
  • Goodnight Hotmail, You Sweet Prince | The Bygone Bureau
    I never used Hotmail – I was adamant that I’d never use Hotmail because (1) everyone was using it (I was quite the hipster, on hindsight); and (2) it didn’t cater for POP3 usage (definitely a hipster), so I ended up using all sorts of other email messaging systems, like Geocities and MyRealBox. But Hotmail’s presence as one of the pioneering forces of the ’90s Internet revolution cannot be denied.
  • The Ongoing Story: Twitter and Writing | The New Yorker
    “Most great writers could, if they wanted to, be very good at Twitter, because it is a medium of words and also of form. Its built-in limitation corresponds to the sense of rhythm and proportion that writers apply to each line. But…[n]ot everyone is primed to be a modern-day Heraclitus, like Alain de Botton, who starts each day, it seems, by cranking up his inner fortune-cookie machine and producing a string of tweets that are, to varying degrees, sour, funny, fatalistic, and bitingly true”.