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Love and Light

Region 1 - Young Adult Programme: Introduction to Cooking and Baking

On the 17th January, the first YAP of 2015 was held, with an introduction to cooking and baking. This was hosted by the hugely inspirational Swathi aunty, or better known to most as the ‘lovely lady who bakes great cakes and biscuits and makes a killer masala chai!’
Swathi aunty introduced herself to the youth explaining how her journey with baking truly began with Swami’s call over four years ago. She explained how she grew in confidence through a combination of utter faith in Swami and baby steps, which, in turn, made all of us feel very much at ease with trying anything.

We began by observing and listening intently as Swathi aunty explained the ingredients used and how it was always important to read and be weary of even items that we wouldn’t usually think contained egg or meat bi-products. Swathi aunty then showed us how to make a beautiful orange sponge, followed by a delicious sultana jam, and a wonderful buttercream. We also helped Swathi aunty make the most amazing oatmeal cookies which we couldn’t help but sample even if they weren’t 100% cool! Then the fun part came as we decorated the orange sponge cupcakes and placed them in decorative boxes ready to take to the shelter. We also learnt how to create a cupcake filled with the sultana jam, which complimented the flavour of the orange beautifully, to my surprise.

The afternoon continued with all of us learning a simple, quick and easy lunch, which was not only tasty but easy on the pockets too! Having learnt how to make vermicelli noodles with peppers, sweet corn and a mix of herbs, it was then time for us to eat some lunch, have more joyous Sathsang and then pack all the biscuits, ready to take to the homeless shelter (Merton Action for Single Homeless – MASH).

It was a wonderful experience interacting with both the other youth but also the adults whom we so often see behind the scenes but we don’t often get a chance to have real conversations with. Through also giving our offerings to the shelter it really was a great combination of Seva with smiles and Sathsang!

Although, I haven’t quite gotten around to baking all the recipes, it will be the next cake I bake!

Mathurini Visakan, Region 1