I waited patiently in front of the Royal Exchange, in three layers of make up.
How do I get myself into these situations?
My dear friend / film producer / cameraman walked enthusiastically over with a bulging pocket. And the full dread of being filmed, at lunchtime, in London’s financial district, suddenly filled me.
Is it too late to change my mind?
Steely eyes stared back. I got his drift.
Normally, I am a shameless self publicist. But merrily shopping with a big smile while the credit crunch wipes if off everyone else’s was a tad shameless too far.
Even the cab driver sighed “cutbacks” when I asked him to drop me some two minutes down the road.
And then there were the do-I-recognise-this-Z-list-celebrity stares. I half contemplated hand writing a placard saying “No. You do not know who I am“.
It was just as well that this video‘s theme was Comfort Eating. I cooked Taheri, a moreish vegetable pulao with cauliflower, peas and potatoes from North India, with my friend Boobie’s Anda or egg Raita.
The Egg Raita might take some getting used to. But, like my cookery video jaunts, once you try it there really is no going back.
Bring the oil to heat over a high flame in a large pot. When it’s hot, stir in the ginger and as it starts going brown mix in the raw vegetables.
Stir for a minute until the vegetables are sealed all over and add the spice powders. Mix viciously for another two minutes to coat all the vegetables with the masalas. If the masalas stick to the bottom of the pot, add a bit of hot water and scrape it off.
Then measure the rice in a cup, rinse it rice thoroughly under a tap and pour it into the masalas. Stir it well mixing into the spices for about two minutes, add twice as much hot water as rice (measured in the cup) and salt to taste and bring to the boil.
When it starts bubbling, lower the heat and simmer until the rice absorbs all the water and is cooked through.