Josephine fasts all day on Good Friday and cooks a simple Tamil Christian meal for the evening- kanjee which is a rice, lentil and coconut milk khichdi (like a watery(liquidy?) risotto), hot lentil chutney and a fabulous paayasam- a dessert made out of roasted moong daal( a kind of lentil), jaggery and coconut milk.In Dublin, she attends an evening service at the nearby Foxrock church, and gets back to share her meal with us.This time I am celebrating Easter with friends. My table is set for lunch . I did the setting yesterday so I can share it with you —
I had some exquisitely painted eggs from Romania. For a table for Easter, Josephine reminded me, they had to be brought out from our bedroom.
I wish I had chicks or even hens since they are closely associated with eggs– but for now my three wooden painted cocks would have to do. I had bought them in Ottawa for one dollar each at a Dollar Shop. They have traveled the world with me and I am very fond of them. So I elevated their position from a kitchen shelf to the dining table – and put them with the eggs.
Some creative people in Dar es Salaam have been dismantling traditional wooden boats called Dhows and making fabulous furniture and accessories . I have two of their beautiful candle holders . Because the cocks would need to sit on something- I used one of them.
For a base, this great piece of burlap from a package did well- rough and beautifully textured.
Huge ,old pine trees, sadly, had to be cut down from the garden of the residence. I wanted memories of those trees so I had the loggers cut me many slices that I now use around the house, in the garden and on my table. Here they are- pine wood table mats – so organic and beautiful !
And , of course, the gorgeous painted eggs ! Normal white and brown eggs would have also worked beautifully. Just that I had these ones so I used them. And two Spathiphyllum plants. One of the first things I do on arriving in a new place is get Spathiphyllum plants -small and large-for the house. They require very little maintenance and , I firmly believe, enliven any corner or table.
The one dollar cock and the eggs at close quarters-
Oh- just to add- since a few of you have asked, Josephine’s recipe for paayasam will follow very soon ..Before Josephine, I, for one, did not know much about Tamil food beyond the idli or dosa . To me, it has also been educational. I think this food is different, simple and delicious.
You can see how one can use the wood slices( in the pictures above )in a different way by clicking here
Today is Sunday- Easter Sunday- so I can safely say- Happy Easter ! May you all, dear friends, have a life that renews itself- with happiness-everyday !