Potatoes and Phone calls

Ring Ring Ring… That’s the imaginary phone ringing. “Hello” says Mittu, pretending to pick the call.

Now this is when I start listening, cause unlimited fun comes from these phone calls. I wasn’t disappointed.

“That was grandma”. Said Mittu to me. “Oh How is she?” I asked.

“Not good. She fell down and broke her hand”. “I am so sorry, how did it happen?” I asked.

Mittu : “Grandma fell from the top of a mountain!”

Me: “Huh!!! What was she doing up there?”

Mittu: “Grandma doesn’t like her kitchen since there is no fan in there. So she went to the top of the mountain and finished her cooking there. When she was bringing the food to the table, she stumbled over a chair and fell flat.”

Me: “How did she get the table there?”

Mittu:”Oh, grandpa carried a ladder and a slide on one hand, and the table on the other.”

Me: “A slide and a ladder!!??”

Mittu: “Yeah, Don’t you know how difficult it is to climb a mountain!! Ladder makes it easy. And slide is so that you can come down pretty easy and quick.”

Me: “Yeah, that’s really clever.”

Mittu:”Now, I gotta go and see grandma in the hospital. Hope they have a spare hand to replace the one that broke.” And off she goes in her scooter to our sofa (the hospital apparently). She talks softly to her grandma and reports that things are fine.

In the background, my son is now picking up another imaginary call. I bet that is going to be fun too!

You have no idea how difficult it is to keep a straight face during these conversations. A hint of smile in your face and they run away, accusing you of mocking them. I am storing my laughter and would go to the bathroom and laugh it till tears roll from my eyes.

All this happened while I was making Kumbhakonam Kadappa for Radhika’s Blog Hop Wednesdays.

Another edition of Blog Hop Wednesdays and my blog for this week is the awesome Bon Appetit by Priya Sreeram. I had chosen at least six recipes before finalizing on this Kumbhakonam Kadappa recipe. Hop on to her place for a menu with so much of variety that its confusing to choose one!


  • Potatoes                     :    3 medium
  • Moong Dal                 :    1/2 cup, uncooked
  • Onion                           :    1, chopped
  • Garlic                           :    2-3 pods, chopped fine
  • Green Chillies           :    3, chopped fine
  • Curry leaves             :    1 sprig
  • Mustard seeds          :   1 tsp
  • Water                           :    2-3 cups, adjust according to the consistency required
  • Oil                                  :   1 tbsp
  • Salt to taste
Grind Together
  • Roasted Bengal Gram  :  1 1/2 tbsp
  • Fennel seeds                   :   1 tsp
  • Coriander seeds            :    1 tsp
  • Coconut                            :    1/4 cup, scraped
  • Tomato                             :    1 medium


  1. Wash the dal and potatoes. Skin the potatoes, dice them into big cubes.
  2. Pressure cook potatoes and dal with enough water (about 1 1/2 cups) for three whistles.
  3. Once done, mash the dal fine, but keep the potatoes a bit chunky. Keep aside.
  4. Grind together the items under the list for grinding.
  5. Heat oil in a pan, add the mustard seeds. Once they splutter add the curry leaves, onion, chillies and garlic.
  6. Once the onions turn brown, add the ground paste and fry for 2-3 minutes till the raw smell goes off.
  7. Add the mashed dal and potatoes. Add 1-2 cups of water and cook for about 10 minutes.
  8. The consistency should be fairly thick, but not too thick either.
  9. Optional step : Heat 2 tsp oil in a pan, add a chopped onion and 2-3 chopped green chillies. Saute till onions are done and pour on top of the prepared curry.
  10. Serve with dosa or idly. Serves 6 – 8.


These taste the best with dosa or idly. With rice, it tastes no different than a dal.

And does anyone have a grandma who goes to cook in the mountains because they don’t have a fan in the kitchen?

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25 thoughts on “Potatoes and Phone calls

  1. tht’s really so sweet of ur kids – hope these simple pleasures of life bring u joy always. I could almost imagine the conversation happening before me and yes even I have been party to some wierd in a fun way sort of imaginary phone calls. It is difficult not to burst in to peels of laughter else u r scorned off – wowee- such unadulterated joys of life !!!! Thank you for the sweet words rajani- the dish looks yum but I loved the phone calls :)


  2. dish looks good Rajani…thank you for commenting on my post….and I won’t give up on the Khandvi…will see it on my blog pretty soon:))and I was wondering how I can follow ur blog?I am not able to see any google follow or facebook like!!


  3. Don’t you ever stop writing something like this Rajani. Things so simple such as this always unwinds a lot of people by putting a smile on their face. You do not know I guess the wonderful job you are doing btw. the kadappa rocks. My hometown’s signature recipe.


  4. What a fun conversation! I too have a hard time keeping a straight face. Once my oldest son cracked the toilet tank. He came and told me that there was a little leak but soon it would be big. When I went I asked him how it happend and he said he wanted to know how it work so he removed the lid, but it was heavy and he dropped it on the tank and that made the crack. He was so earnest, and I knew I should scold, but I had an overwhelming desire to laugh, so I put my hands over my face. He thought I was crying (I might have been because I was working so hard to keep from laughing) and he patted my back and said, “don’t cry mommy, I’m sure Daddy can fix it”. which made me laugh harder, so I had to let him know I wasn’t crying. :)

    Your soup looks delicious! Thank you for sharing the recipe with the Hearth and Soul Hop.


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