Monday, May 07, 2007

Cook Like a Bachelor

In my post on Cook like a Lazy Bachelor, I published a process which was till now a closely guarded secret by lazy bachelors like me. Thus publishing some serious cooking tips for bachelors becomes imperative.
The next few tips will be useful if a "lazy bachelor" ends up with another lazy bachelor or a smart guy who can see through the plan. These may also be considered Survival tips .. to be used when other options are ruled out.

1. An onion a day, keeps the ophthalmologist away :
Whether you like cutting onions or not, onions are arguably the most important and universal ingredient of a bachelors recipe. They can be used to add taste and a little bit of that crunch to almost any vegetable. The Dal Tadka is incomplete without onions. Most egg preparations only taste better with onions.
Cutting onions is sometimes boring and does definitely make you cry. However given the onions importance I choose to look at the bright side. Crying means that my eyes will be cleaned up of any dirt and unwanted particles. So fewer trips to the ophthalmologist.

2. Ande ka Funda..
If Onion adds taste, the Anda (egg) saves the bachelor. If onions are the universal ingredients, Anda forms the universal content of the side dish(sometimes even the main). Eggs can be prepared into various preparations - half fry, full fry , boiled eggs, omelet, bhurji , egg curry and so on. They all go really well with bread, so you have bread omelet, bhurji pav, french toast etc. The best part is all the egg preparations are extremely easy to make and bread is available off the store shelf. Thus the combination of Bread and Eggs soon forms a important part of a Bachelor's diet. Those unfortunate souls who prefer being vegetarians, have learn cooking more complex dishes for they cannot buy the "Ande ka Funda".

3. You can't go wrong with "Two Minute Noodles" -
This is perhaps better known as Maggie. A Nestle brand which has become synonymous with 2 minute noodles. Easy to cook, hassle free, and fast, not to mention that reasonably nutritious too.
For a novice cook nothing is as straight forward as Maggie. As one learns more cooking this becomes the back up food as it is not as tasty if it were the only thing available in each of the 3 -4 meals in a day (breakfast, lunch, tea time, dinner).

4. Breakfast = Cornflakes / Bread Jam.
Corn flakes and milk or Bread and Jam - not many breakfast items can claim to be more nutritious and easy to prepare as these two. Again like all things mentioned so far, the key is simplicity, and easy to cook (read as I am too lazy to try cooking something else). US of course provides many more variations to this list in form of Texas toasts, break fast snacks, oat meals, cookies etc. With all those options available, whoever thought of anything else , would have to give up his claim to being lazy.

5. Masala = Put it all together -
For any Indian female who can cook (most of them can cook well), a masala is an assortment of spices - chili, turmeric, coriander leaves, cilantro, asafoetida and a wide variety of other spices that only my nose can smell but my vocabulary can't describe. These of course are used in carefully measured quantities and most women are so finicky that the slightest change in any content or quantity seems to spoil the whole meal. However for a bachelor a masala is literally put it all together. So my masala consisted of whatever of the above mentioned spices I could lay my hands on and in acceptably small non measured quantities. All of that thrown together so that it would taste different (hopefully edible) each of the time. That way the meal has a element of surprise and you don't have to hunt for new recipes each day. The same recipe can taste different seven days a week.

6. Fruits and Juices are good for health.
As Laziness reigns supreme the drive to cook goes down. On the other hand the sinful stomach (paapi peth) yearns for food. Often (especially weekend mornings) a clash between the two brings out the importance of having fruits. Fruits are nutritious, natural, wholesome food. Not to mention they are very good for health and are even known to have medicinal properties. With all those advantages mentioned, it is but natural that having only fruits on one of the days is definitely a good idea.

7. Married couples need others for company as well.
It is interesting how humans are social. That's one of the reasons most people marry is for companionship. However I think the companionship of just the spouse is sometimes to boring. Especially after a few years of marriage. As a bachelor, me and my roommate were sometimes getting invited to a dinner or so by married couples. That's when we realised that even married couples need other friends for company. Naturally we were ready to fill in that void. So soon after that realization dawned upon us we were inviting ourselves to dinner / lunch at other peoples places and then our hosts would be quite happy to feed us. This is one survival lesson that I learnt cause my roommate was as lazy a bachelor as me. Often neither of us wanted to cook and that's when this solution struck us.

8. Lazy Bachelors invented the Pizza delivery.
If nothing else works you can always call up the Pizza store and have a pizza. Nor really a very healthy food, but it tastes good and comes for a reasonable price. After all this is a last ditch effort to keep your hungry stomach at bay.


  1. After reading so many posts about your culinary skills, I am seriously doubting that Sanjeev Kapoor has a competition... :)

  2. Before marriage.. I have lived almost 2 years on egg, Tomato and Onion and all available Indian Masala in my kitchen...

    but only after my marriage, I realized that I am a good cook too.... when I have tried more Indian Sabzieeeeesssss with my golden hands...

    Trust me... I repent many times now why I have never tried all this when I was bachelor...

    I have been on bread and omlete many times in my dinner...

    I could have better food if I just tried to give a TRY.... with positive mindset that yes I can cook also... I always thought I cannt cook....

    But my wife made me realize that I am a good coook...

    Thanks to her!!!:)

  3. You are right Ashish ... impossible is nothing ...
    But this guide is a survival kit for people who don't like to cook ... like yours truly

  4. Today I must say "Sanjeev Kapoor is not a Magician" he is doing something for years now which we just tried first time....

    Guys, give a try...

  5. Vishi... dear you are missing important part of bachelor life...

    "Khambaaaa aur murga"

    I remember "S:KnM" i mean "Sardar jee ke yahan Khambaaaa aur murga".... replaced many of many dinner meals.... when I was living with my roommates in Pune...

    we used to wait and look at clock to show up 6 PM... and as sooon as it up to the mark of 6 .... we rush for our destination for kambha aur murga... it was like sometimes we need not to even order our portion... its ready in 15 minutes....

    Guys.. I miss those days... but sad part of the whole story is "I stopped both... Now I am Pure Veg with only Soft Drinks on table"