Monday, August 07, 2006

The Joy of Cooking

Anuj in the kitchen of his San Francisco apartment.
Summer 2002.
Anuj loved to cook. His Thanksgiving meals, which he and Flo would prepare from scratch every year, were legendary. We will write more about them later. When it came to his creations, Anuj would try to be as geographically diverse as possible: Mexican to Indian, Italian to classic American, among many other cuisines. Some of the warmest memories that friends and family have of him are casual get-togethers where he fired up the barbecue grill or prepared something from a new recipe for his guests.

Anuj was not afraid to experiment in the kitchen. In fact that is how he first cultivated his interest in cooking. One day, during a summer vacation in high school, Anuj picked up his mom's old 'The Joy of Cooking' recipe book and decided to make some things in the dessert section. Unfortunately the donuts turned out flat and the lemon tarts a little too tangy. But he didn't give up and after a few tries he got it right. Anuj quickly branched out from desserts, moved over to main courses, and never looked back.

Many years later, in 2004, Anuj gave his mom the latest edition of 'The Joy of Cooking' as a Mother's Day gift. It was a small way to pay her back for developing a passion and skill that he would enjoy for the rest of his life.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

What an awesome picture of dear Anuj. I love that little smirk-I guess that mischeviousness just never went away. It's another fine example of what a humble and family oriented individual our loving Anuj was.

3:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember that day quite distinctly. Anuj's lemon tarts turned out to be a little tangy, so to cheer him up we ended up having a "though the lemon tarts were tangy, the next batch would be great" dinner. In typical Anuj fashion, he took this as an encouragement and never looked back. Since then we enjoyed many home made creations of Anuj that always seemed to taste amazing. Oh how we are going to miss your cooking that not only tasted great because it was good but because you made it with love.


5:39 PM  

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