Thursday, June 26, 2014

Quick Corn Chaat-- and Legos are for all

Corn Chaat Quick and Easy

This post is going to be about a quick and easy Corn Chaat for you to serve as a side with all the  barbecuing you might be doing, but more importantly about Legos and my rant. So, bear with me.

A few weeks back I was at LS's school(kindergarten) for some show that they had put up. As expected there were other Moms there, most of whom I had never met, and pleasantries were exchanged.

In lieu of these conversations a mother of a little boy asked me, "Does LS play with Legos?". Her voice bordered just that little bit on curiosity and disbelief.

I was a little taken aback by the question. A big box of Lego is very much a part of our play room. It has been so for years now, since Big Sis was born. Many years ago, my previous workplace was donating boxes of basic Lego bricks after a lego competition and I had lugged a huge box home anticipating a future where I would not have to buy any other toys, because of course there were Legos. These were the basic Lego bricks, in red, blue, green, yellow and white, all the exact same size.

When BigSis was around two, I bought her another Lego box, this one too just had the bricks but they were at least in various sizes. And since this huge pile of Lego takes a prime spot in the playroom, it was only natural that LS got introduced to it.

So, I wasn't really sure what this lady wanted to know and I said, "Yes, LS does play with Legos. But she plays all kinds of things with them".

Which is in fact true. LS uses Legos to make food for her kitchen, she uses them to make cake, to make cell phones and even wrapped cereal bars !!! She even devises complex games, like shown above where one player has to throw legos down a chute and the other has to guess the color, to play with them.

When Big Sis has nothing much to do, she builds figures and buildings with Legos too. And then LS is her big sister's assistant .

With little imagination, a Lego can be anything.And all this can be done with just plain simple universal Lego bricks.I have never bought a Lego Star Wars or a Lego Super Hero. My girls are not interested in star wars or Super heroes(at least not yet) and I do not believe in Lego's specific marketing of combat themed sets for boys . In fact I have never even bought a Lego Friends as I don't think girls should need special Legos either. I love the basic universal Lego bricks and that is what keeps my girls busy

So, then the lady tells me, "Yes, my son said, LS is a girl but even then she plays with Legos. I told him, maybe she has an older brother and that is why she plays with Legos"

That really got my goat. I mean is that how successful Lego's marketing has been. To even impress upon educated modern-day Mothers that "girls don't play with Legos unless inducted by brothers" ??? Lego might have its own profit making ideas to shift from being a non-gender universal toy but why can't even parents look beyond marketing and just accept the bricks for all the imagination they can stoke, be it a boy or a girl.

Does your child play with Legos ?  Do they play with the basic bricks or the new themed boxes of Legos ?

Now for this easy and quick Corn Chaat which is very easy to put together and goes very well with all the outdoor barbecuing you might be doing this summer. It is healthy and cool also super simple.

It is so simple that it is almost a child's play. A child who is adept with the knife in kitchen because they have to chop onions and cucumber. But if an adult takes care of the chopping, even a 5 year old can do the assembling

It all starts with a bag of steam-in-bag corn.
It could have also started with fresh corn on the cob, but then you will have to spend a wee bit of time in boiling the corn.
You could also start with a bag of frozen corn and just microwave it.

Next, put the steamed corn in a big bowl.

To it add
chopped red onion
chopped green cucumber
chopped green chilli
finely chopped tomatoes

Squeeze in a bit of lemom juice.

Sprinkle some pink salt and chaat masala. Toss gently to mix. Taste and adjust for everything.

While serving in a summer afternoon, garnish with chopped mint leaves.


  1. Yes my girls have played with legos for many years, without any boys or influence of boys around us. Legos went in boxes and bags in the cars during drives too. And they play with Tinker Toys. We went to Legoland and bought more Legos after the bags and boxes we had at home. Mostly not themed, but in diff. sizes. One did get a gril themed one for a gift. But no preferences here. The plain ones are better as they can be built into anything

  2. I have a boy ( kindergartner, like LS) and he likes Lego toys and yes, my boy ( no siblings) like to roll out rotis! I bet the mother you mention here would have fainted if we all had met at the same time ;)

  3. I an relate to your rant, Sandeepa. When my daughter was younger, she didn't play much with Legos but she loved playing with balls of any kind (stills does) and never had any interest in dolls. Once when we we were visiting family back in Calcutta, one of my MIL's friends came over and presented her with a doll. I casually commented to her that she really shouldn't have bothered and in any case my daughter didn't like dolls. I was pointedly told 'Shey abar ki kotha....meye ra to putul niyei kheley' (What nonsense...girls are supposed to play with dolls!!)The whole incident amused me greatly....but at least the comment was coming from someone of an older generation.

  4. The first two photos look alike!

    Even I played with Lego as a kid (or maybe similar stuff, don't know the brand). Built houses, gardens, so many things.

  5. This gets me riled up every time. Why can't girls play with Legos and why can't boys have dolls? My kids do both and I won't have it any other way.
    Love the corn chaat, so summery. BTW, started playing Bengali A-Z with you :)

  6. I don't understand the fuss about girl game and boy game. Before my son started going to school he used to play with soft toys, but now he has he stopped playing with soft toys, he doesn't touch anything which has even a remote shade of pink, he has stopped watching Dora on TV and most Disney movies as he considers them girlish. Ami bujhtei parchi na eisab habijabi kothay shikhche. ami nije konodino chele/meye toy niye bother korini tao... ;'(

  7. My boys played with legos and they played with play dough and tea sets and soft toys too. And they loved Dora as kids.


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