Self-taught home cook pilot stays grounded in his family kitchen
Airline pilot Saravanakkumar Shanmugam gets to enjoy nine days a month at home with his wife Lalithaaand their daughter Sahana. So he makes sure that for five of those days at least, the people he loves get to enjoy his homecooking. To see my family enjoy what I cook for them, it really gives me great satisfaction, he says. Eating together gives us time to bond. Kumar, as hes known to family and friends, recalls time spent in the kitchen as a child, helping his mother make thosai and the like. His mum and grandmother had a small catering service providing Indian food, and cookies at Deepavali. As teenagers, Kumar and his cousins would camp out during school holidays and pitch a tent in the backyard, setting up a barbecue for outdoor grilling probably what led to his love of BBQ today. A small, mobile barbecue veiled in black sits in a corner of his living room, ready to be wheeled out at a moments notice. But Kumar, 35, only learned to cook seriously when he was 18, and he was spurred on by his own appetite. Basically, if I wanted to eat something, I would end up finding out how to cook it, he says. The first dish I ever cooked was black pepper crab. But I must admit I didnt clean the crab that time, lah one of my aunties did.
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