They say the sure way to enter a man’s heart is through his stomach. But can a man capture a woman’s heart by taking care of her food?
I know one thing: women adore those men who always make sure that the other half doesn’t go hungry. My husband is one of those species — even while going on trips in large groups, if he is organising it, there would be bed coffee, breakfast at 7.30-8, enough snacks to last you till lunchtime, a sumptuous lunch at 1-1.30, tea with snacks at 3.30-4, all to be rounded off with a huge dinner at 8-8.30 in the night. The womenfolk of the group admire him because, which man would take pains to provide food at right places and that too at appropriate intervals?
In this my husband always reminds me of my ‘Periyappa’ (father’s elder brother) who had this habit of interfering in the kitchen affairs. In their house at Palakkad, there would be a chart, written in Periyappa’s beautiful hand, stuck on the door of the store room. In it, he would have neatly planned out the menu for the whole week. Under each day of the week would be the name of the dish to be prepared for breakfast, lunch, tiffin etc. Maybe this was his way of ensuring standard food for the family and I don’t know whether my Periyamma had any difference of opinion over this monotonous fare, day after day, week after week. But to me and my sister, Periyappa was a strange phenomenon because our father entered the kitchen only for making the morning coffee. People like my husband are seen to be spendthrift when it comes to food but tightfisted in other things. I may never get my bag even if it costs only `5. But if we are dining out, he would say in a very indulging and patronising tone: “Don’t look at the cost. If you like it, place the order and have it.” His logic: “Food is the only thing that can give you full satisfaction, which makes you feel you don’t want more.”
True. He knows I am fond of banana fries. So he brings home not one but three. My protests fall on deaf ears. “You like them, so, have them to the full, Madam!”
Once he had gone out to attend a function. I was at home nursing a bad cold. By the time he returned, I was angry at being left alone and hungry since I had not cooked any food. He took one look at my dull face. “Oops, I forgot. It is in the car.”
‘It’ turned out to be three cupcakes, one plum cake and a packet of wafers.
“I knew you would be hungry. It’s Christmas, you see. There was no banana fry available.”
Food-caring leopards too never change their spots.