Faraan from Lozells, Birmingham
I’m Indian, my grand parents moved here when my mom was very young and my dad came over as a young adult from India. I grew up with both parents and 2 older sisters, 2 younger brothers so I’m the middle child. We were close with my moms side of the family, real brother and sister so we used to go around to their house a lot. My dads family is here too but it’s cousins, we grew up around them too but more with my moms side. It’s been nice having older and younger siblings around, I can’t imagine not having them around, we used to do the craziest stuff growing up. We had a good environment whilst growing up and try to give that to my niece and nephew when they come over.
On week days for breakfast it was usually cereal in the early mornings. But if it’s on the weekends mom would make paranteh which are usually stuffed chapatis. There’s loads of different ones you can make, main one was mashed boiled potato and you mix with different spices, onions, chillies, sometimes ginger, dried pomegranate seeds and fresh coriander. You can make different mixes using White Raddish or cauliflower. This is usually eaten with some butters and plain yoghurt.
When we would have dinner usually the meals would be placed into serving dishes and put out onto the dinner table. The table would be set out with the plates and someone would serve the food to make it easier. But seconds you just help yourself. My moms a vegetarian so we don’t cook meat in the house so the typical dinner would be roti (chappatis)/ rice with lentils or mixed veg saabji which is a dry dish usually. Along with some salad and plain yoghurt.
My favourite food as a child was Pizza and still is, at home we’ve made Italian at home such as pizza, pasta and lasagne. Also oriental food, like noodles and so forth. Moms made some Caribbean food like rice and peas with something veggie dish. Sometimes some middle eastern style dishes.
We didn’t really eat out much when we were younger because what’s better than home cooked food. My mom is a great cook and I’ve learnt a lot from her, she can cook dishes from different cusines so it’s not as if we always used to eat Indian every single day. But we went out if it was someone’s birthday or anniversary, sometimes in a blue moon just because. But we get take out like every other weekend I think which was always fun.
We don’t eat beef. We’ll we aren’t supposed to but when I was younger in primary school I ended up eaten it a few times because I didn’t know what it was. But it was an honest few mistakes, but since then I don’t touch it nor do I eat any kind of meat from pig for personal reasons.
Some of my favourite dishes are aloo paranteh which is basically potatoe stuffed paranteh, for a snack, samosas and spring rolls are always a good thing to go for, chicken curry is always a good one, lamb keema is another. But if it’s made by my mom then red kidney bean lentils/ curry with rice would have to be my favourite. No one makes it like my mom. My favourite dessert is kulfi so creamy and sweet.