The earliest recollection I have of cooking on my own, rather with friends, was back in the nineties, when I was probably nine or ten years old. We had — at least by present-day city standards — a fairly large garden with fruits trees and a vegetable garden. Four of us, closest of friends, had gathered at my garden for some famous five – secret seven games where we had to fend for ourselves in the wilderness. This of course usually meant gathering food and make-believe cooking. That summer forenoon however we decided to do the real thing. I roped in my paternal grandmother who helped us put together a temporary brick oven in the backyard and kindled the fire in the stove, and probably in my heart, for cooking. After gathering fire wood, leaves, old newspaper, and some utensils, we were ready to cook! We cooked cauliflower with lots of Amul cheese spread and gravy of potato with tomato and Indian spices.
I still love spending time outdoors, even if it is just my backyard or terrace. This is my dog Cheeku who always stays close to me, especially when I cook! :)