Annamma chedathi who hails from the beautiful countryside of Nadavayal in Wayanad is the life and soul of her YouTube channel which has close to one million subscribers. Sachin and Pinju met the grandma when the duo was looking for someone, from their village, who could cook mouthwatering traditional dishes for a channel that they were planning to start.
It was Sachin’s father who told them about Annamma chedathi who makes the best fish curry in the locality. Sachin and Pinju admit that they were blown by the incredible fish curry that Annamma chedathi had prepared for a video. Not just her amazing cooking skills, but Annamma chedathi’s simple ways and her locale style of speaking too has won many ardent fans. “This fabulous combination of cooking and talking is what we were looking for. Though we hail from the same place, I didn’t know her personally. I had seen her at our church while attending the services. I had also seen Annamma chedathi’s son Babu. But, I have been friends with her grandson Joymon. It was only later that I realized that she was Joymon’s grandma,” Sachin reveals how he ‘found’ Annamma chedathi.
Fish curry and YouTube
“Sachin asked me whether I could cook a fish curry. I agreed as I didn’t have any problem cooking a simple fish curry. But I didn’t expect it to become such a huge thing,” says Annamma chedathi.
“Lots of people call me saying that they want to meet me or I should smile more or talk more,” Annamma chedathi is clearly excited.
Annamma chedathi loves talking and she enjoys speaking to her viewers who call her on her phone. She often asks Sachin why he hadn’t thought of this idea earlier. However, borrowing the famous dialogue from a super hit Malayalam cinema, Sachin says there is a right time for everything.
No waste policy
The grandma’s no waste policy is what impressed Sachin and Pinju the most. They say that chedathi comes up with unique ideas to turn waste materials into something useful.
Lessons of cooking
Annamma chedathi says that no one had taught her how to cook and that she had learned it by observing. In her opinion, it is difficult to teach cooking to someone who isn’t interested. “When you do something, do it with all your heart. Only then would it become amazing. Mind, and not age, is what determines your abilities,” says chedathi.
Annamma chedathi was just a nine-year-old girl when she got into the kitchen and started doing the chores. Her mother would go to the fields for work or to the market, leaving the responsibility to run the house on young Annamma. Besides, she was supposed to look after her younger sibling too. She cooked, cleaned, did the dishes and chopped the firewood. After doing all these chores, the young girl had found time to play kuttim kolum (local game) with her friends. “No one had taught me anything. I learned it from my mother. I do most things on my own. No one has ever complained about the way I managed the home. It was how I lived,” recalls chedathi.
Chedathi’s son Babu is her right hand man when it comes to cooking. Having completed the hotel management course, Babu had worked in the hospitality sector for a few years. He is the modern version of Annamma chedathi. “No could ever achieve perfection in cooking. Even if a top chef cooks the same dishes that I cook, it would taste different. So, I try to observe and learn. I get inspired by my mother and then try it in my own way,” says Babu. He enjoys experimenting with flavours and ingredients. Meanwhile, chedathi is only proud of his son’s cooking skills.
“He brings his own variations to the dishes that I cook. It would always stay in his mind as he is doing it with passion,” smiles chedathi.
Meanwhile, Sachin and Pinju get their camera ready to film another episode where Annamma chedathi cooks something special.