Looking at the pot that had gone black on the underneath and the unpleasant mixture of pepper and smoke, I didn’t need a prophet to tell me the wedding was probably going to be cancelled and someone sent off to a catering school. It was as if I had never held a kitchen knife in my life. How could this have gone wrong? I mean, jollof was supposed to be my thing.
The voice of my Daniel jolted me back to life as I tried make meaning of what had just happened. I had burnt a pot of jollof rice, in my potential in-laws’ house, a bright Saturday morning with a handful of hungry stomachs waiting to taste the food.
Goodness, have I not messed up?
Ok! Maybe I was exaggerating a little, it was not that bad as it looked. It had not entirely lost its taste, at least. Waterlogged rice embedded in a pot with a silver gone black bottom.
Daniel might have taken long trying to make me feel better as Mama walked in to check on us. A good cook knows if it will taste nice after taking in the aroma. Mama only smiled and asked Daniel to excuse us. This did not do any good to relieve me of the tension I was experiencing as I remembered the wicked step mother who bullied Cinderella when her loving father was away. Ok, I am not Cinderella but it can happen, the one who loves me is not around so yhh….
Back to the kitchen, with my embarrassed-self standing, I could not even think of an excuse as I stood there, empty headed, ready to take in whatever she had to say…”I am glad it is not your character that needs coaching or change”. That, cooking can easily be fixed.
That is how come I mustered the little courage I had within and served the not-so-presentable and “slightly burnt” jollof to my potential in-laws one fine Saturday morning.