Good Karma Through Cooking
The idea of taking an Indian cooking class came about when two friends I’ve made here, Dani from Australia and Mandy from Hong Kong, and I all wanted to learn about the prominent cultures in Singapore. We decided to take a South Indian cooking class from a very cool woman named Ruqxana (with a great reputation) in her funky little home near the eastern coast of Singapore. Maybe not surprisingly, with 5.4 million people in a place the size of Milwaukee, there are very few free standing homes here so Ruqxana’s house near the coast, or anywhere, is pretty unusual. Homes are crazy expensive and are typically owned by the very wealthy and Singapore has a lot of them (just look at the lamberghinis and other sports cars zooming around). I venture to say that Ruqxana is not part of that group, thankfully. Her home is quite bohemian, comfortable and cosmic, with her classic VW bug in the driveway and a number of sweet cats, too.
Ruqxana teaches many types of cooking classes, but we were most interested in learning how to work with Indian spices and making some everyday dishes. The only other person in the cooking class was a fascinating and very well-traveled Asian man named Alvin who was born and raised in Australia and moved to Singapore two weeks before. The four of us bonded during this 3 hour cooking class. There was a nice rain while we cooked in the partially covered outdoor kitchen, but we needed to clear the table since it was getting wet. We made dosai (a fluffy rice and lentil pancake like bread) dal, masala potatoes and green and red chutneys. Mandy, Dani, Alvin and I had a lovely, delicious lunch at the dining table on the front porch while it rained and then became sunny by the end of the meal.
We decided to travel back together, and do a little sightseeing. Mandy, Alvin and I caught the bus outside Ruqxana’s house to the train and went to the posh part of town to bum around. Dani took a cab to pick up her kids from school.