Every year at my sons’ school, parents organize a night of Random Dinners for each class. Some families volunteer to host, and can dictate a style of cuisine or theme for the evening. About a week in advance, other parents are randomly assigned to provide a dish or course and then are given an address the morning of the dinner. We’re about to participate in our fourth random dinner with Ben’s third grade class, and our first with the kindergarten group, and I’m looking forward to them. We’ve always had fun, always wound up talking to folks we don’t see in our regular drop-off/pick-up routine, always discovered new things about our fellow parents. It has always been a terrific meal.
This year, I’m helping organize the kindergarten random dinners so I have an advance peek at what some of the families are planning. There will be several Mexican dinners, one barbecue, one couple doing sushi, another serving Greek food. One couple decided to focus on the theme rather than a style of food and has asked everyone to bring something they’d want to eat on their last day. They were inspired by Melanie Dunea’s book about chefs and their final meals (see some of the photographs here) and even though I’m not necessarily attending that meal, it’s got me thinking: what would I want my final flavors to be? Lemon cake? Puttanesca? My mom’s apple crisp? What would you want to eat on your last day?
No doubt about it, my mom’s eggplant dish. Its called Bharta…which literally means beaten down. Its mashed roasted eggplant, with onions, tomato, ginger, garlic, cilantro and all the right Indian spices, fresh peas are sometimes added. eaten with hot and fluffy rotis with ghee.
Anu, that sounds fabulous to me!