|I dreamed of picking pumpkins from my garden last night. I don’t have any growing. It’s amazing how the mind registers things in the daylight hours and re-configures them in our dream state. Obviously the giant pumpkin photo and accompanying folk tale below (posted before I went to bed) was the connection.
As soon as I got up I went to my bookshelf, stood before the multi-volume Sanskrit Srimad Bhagavatam collection, closed my eyes, picked a random edition and opened it. It spoke to me:
“The living entity creates his own body by his personal desires, and the external energy… supplies him the exact form by which he can enjoy his desires to the fullest extent. The tiger wants to enjoy the blood of another animal, and therefore, by the grace of the Lord, the material energy supplies him the body of the tiger with facilities for enjoying blood from another animal.
Similarly, a living entity desiring to get the body of a demigod in a higher planet can also get it by the grace of the Lord. And if he is intelligent enough, he can desire to get a spiritual body to enjoy the company of the Lord, and he will get it.
So the minute freedom of the living entity can be fully utilized, and the Lord is so kind that He will award the living entity the same type of body he desires.
The living entity’s desiring is like dreaming of a golden mountain. A person knows what a mountain is, and he knows also what gold is. Out of his desire only, he dreams of a golden mountain, and when the dream is over he sees something else in his presence. He finds in his awakened state that there is neither gold nor a mountain, and what to speak of a golden mountain.”
– Srimad Bhagavatam, Canto Two, “The Cosmic Manifestation”.
It’s 5.00 am, and there are no pumpkins to be seen.
Nevertheless, here’s a magnificent recipe:
Succulent Gujarati Pumpkin
This dish proves just how delicious pumpkin can be if teamed up with the correct flavour partners. Succulent Gujarati Pumpkin is excellent served with hot chapatis. Makes enough for 6 persons.
2 tablespoons oil or ghee
1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
½ teaspoon yellow asafetida powder
1 kg pumpkin, cut 1.75cm cubes
1 cup water
1½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon red chili powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1½ teaspoons jaggery or brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
handful fresh coriander leaves, chopped
Heat a wok or deep saute pan over moderate heat. Add the oil or ghee, and when slightly hot, add the fenugreek seeds. Fry them until they turn one or two shades darker. Be careful not to darken them too much, or they will turn bitter. Add the yellow asafetida powder, saute momentarily, splash in a little water to cool the pan, then add the pumpkin, water, salt, turmeric, chili, and coriander powder.
Stir, then cover, raise the heat, bring the mixture to the boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover tightly, and cook for about 10 or 15 minutes, or until the pumpkin is tender, preferably with a little liquid left in the pan.
Add the sweetener and lemon juice, heat through, then remove the pan from the heat, sprinkle with fresh coriander leaves and serve hot.
Posted by Kurma on 14/8/05; 7:23:56 AM