Tuesday, July 17, 2012

I think Mrs Chi wants to kill me

So here's the deal.. I have a housekeeper called Mrs Chi. She was amiable enough when she came in to us at first. Actually that's not true... we had another maid called .... and I kid you not.. .Mom... except she made a quick exit due to her...ahem... interest in entertaining guests when we were not home. Luckily she was caught out before the situation could get out of hand. Naturally was handed her marching papers immediately. Along came Mrs Chi. A feisty lady easily took over the household duties. Now for those of you who have moved to another country or done any shifting to a new home ever.. will know it takes at least 3 weeks after moving in to really figure out how everything is working.... and this is how I discovered that Mrs Chi liked to pretend to look busy but really didn't do much.

So I decided it was time to show Mrs Chi what I meant with the housekeeping. Once a month... a complete top to floor cleaning is sufficient here as there is no dust as such thankfully... but that day of cleaning is a bit of a pain but has to be done. Poor Mrs Chi was suddenly learning how to navigate between vacuum cleaners, dusters and bottles of Glint. Let me tell you right now... she was not a happy woman

Today had a friend come over for lunch. Was kind of a spontaneous decision as i had just returned from the gym and was trying to decide whether I should collapse back into bed or get up and be productive when my friend's call guided my day. She wanted to meet outside for lunch but I was certainly not in the mood to get dressed up ... so told her to come over... we'll just boil some pasta or something and have that I announced bravely, vaguely remembering a Nigella Lawson recipe I had learned. To be fair I did make it a number of times and the kids and I love it. My friend is from Bangladesh and perhaps desi tastes are not suited to this kind of flavor and I don't know if you are from the sub continent that you would  like it either but will post the recipe here anyway if you want to try it in a pinch. Its really fast and really easy. Just maybe... don't serve it to friends from Pakistan, ...or India... or Bangladesh.... Sri Lanka? Ok so this is a gora thing what can I say...


  • 375g dried spaghetti
  • 50g unsalted butter  
  • 1 teaspoon Marmite or more, to taste
  • freshly grated Parmesan cheese to serve


  1. Cook the spaghetti in plenty of boiling salted water, according to the packet instructions.
  2. When the pasta is almost cooked, melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the Marmite and 1 tablespoon of the pasta water, mixing thoroughly to dissolve.  Reserve 1/2 a cup of pasta water; then drain the pasta and pour the Marmite/Vegemite mixture over the drained spaghetti, adding a little reserved pasta water to amalgamate if required. Serve with plenty of grated Parmesan cheese.
  3. For vegetarians replace the Parmesan cheese with a vegetarian alternative.

Hope you enjoy the recipe like my family and I do... (not my pathan husband) .... and if not... oh well... will try and share something a bit better. If you did like it.. please let me know so I don't feel like this is an acquired taste that somehow myself... and Nigella Lawson have....thanks and Bon Apetit!


Stephen McGrath said...

As an Australian you just know I'm going to try this one out, albeit with Vegemite replacing that insipid British version. ;-)

I'm a little dubious what will ensue, I must say, but I'll let you know how it's received once consumed.

Ayeshah Alam Khan said...

hey... so you never told me how that turned out?