Maid Matters

Hiring a maid aka Domestic help is no big deal in India. The reasons are obvious- labour is inexpensive and widely available here , unlike in many other countries. It is even more so here in the Navy as we are provided attached ‘servant quarters’( I hate the word servant, don’t you?) hence help is rather easy to come by. So many of us here employ a plethora of help- cooks, cleaning lady, baby sitters, ironing lady, gardeners at our beck and call. In short many of us are uhm…..I guess the word I’m looking for is SPOILT!

So when my maid a few weeks earlier I was devastated. I was continuously weepy and irritable. M couldn’t fathom why I was “overreacting”!

But now I must admit that I rather enjoy doing some chores around the house. Its a LOT more satisfying to do things the way I want , rather than giving out a million instructions before it gets done the way I want it done…


But the thing is, it’s all I seem to be doing….I barely get time for my music lessons or my painting..or even to watch my kids fight it out:)….so am contemplating hiring help again…

My dilemma( based on a moral lecture my cousins in Australia gave me) is this..
Do I need to feel guilty about hiring help to do jobs that I can obviously do. Am I an exploiter?..I cant bring myself to feel that way…it is developmental aid applied directly , right?There is room today for the Saki lifestyle, no?
hhhmmmm Am I lazy? Obviously it takes very little effort to go around the house with a hoover and a damp cloth atleast once a week,,,Just because there are people willing to do those jobs for money do I need to use them? I’m sure there will be people willing to carry me around all day in a fluff of cushions but does their willingness to do the job make me any less lazy?Isn’t it just the nature of privilege?
Obviously there are so many things that I hire help for although I could do it myself…I use caterers for Birthday parties, I use the services of a milkman although it is possible to go get the milk for the store directly…I do it either because I can afford it, or I would just rather not do these jobs…But is the idea that it is definitionally wrong to pay for something that you can very well do yourself is almost impossible to contain to maids..it has a blanket morality that intrinsically spreads to every aspect of our life..
What do you think?

My maid woes aside here’s an absolutely super delicious pudding I tried from here one of my all time fav blogs……This pudding is simple, chocolaty and delicious at the same time a perfect comfort dessert.

Chocolate Custard Biscuit pudding

Condensed Milk 3/4th of a 400g tin
Milk 400 ml
Chocolate pieces 150 grams
Egg yolks 4
Biscuits 10
Strong Black coffee as required
Fresh Cream for decoration

Working quickly dip the biscuits in the coffee and line a pudding dish/ bowl.
Using the double boiler method melt the chocolate and let cool.
Mix all the other ingredients and the melted chocolate( except the cream ).
Now carefully cook it over low flame, stirring continuously .If you do have a LOT of time at hand you could take the safer route and just double boil it. I used a double boiler to make the custard and it took FOREVER so the last few minutes I just transferred the contents to a thick bottomed pan and heated on low flame.Voila! it thickened in a flash!
Once thick pour the custard over the biscuits. Leave to set in the refrigerator.
Pipe cream over it.

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53 Comments

  1. Outstanding post, you have pointed out some fantastic points, I besides believe this is a very fantastic website.

    Reply
  2. Ha ha , like that about the High Def TV . .. . . . very true.
    Poor Jeeves. .. . .and I am sure he will have it pressed by morning.. . . . .so many years of wafadari.

    Reply
  3. Please collect ur award from my blog!!
    read abt ur maid woes :) its surely a dilemma both ways….. luv ur pudding, i have to try it out for the sake of my sweet tooth kiddos :D

    Reply
  4. Yummy pudding dear!

    Reply
  5. Hi Sheeba! Please accept the award from my blog!

    Reply
  6. atleast you have a choice! i am so envious.. full-time work and all the house-work together just takes up so much of your time and over here, forget about getting any domestic help unless you want to take a second mortgage on your house :( Really though, you are creating employment and besides our social models are so complex now that we have to rely on services provided by each other rather than thinking of doing it all ourselves.. so go for it!

    Reply
  7. Ah, daaaaaahling, good help is so hard to find ;).
    Wonderful looking pudding!
    *kisses* HH

    Reply
  8. Hey Sheba,
    There are some awards waiting for you at our space. Please stop by to collect them.

    Reply
  9. Tough decisions. :) An excellent pudding.

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  10. i like very much the condensed milk !! Bravo for your recipe Pierre

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  11. Your Chocolate custard pudding looks awesome! Enjoy reading your post! Maid matters :)

    Reply
  12. I was feeling the same way too, its help both the ways…

    But its frustrating to give them zillion instructions, as u said.

    Now, I manage on my own, if we plan out few things ahead and use many automated appliances, its going to be quite easy.

    Reply
  13. Hmm interesting post. I don’t think you’re exploiting someone by hiring them to do a job that you can do yourself…instead you’re giving someone work and money that they need to live on. If not for you, they might be unemployed, which would be worse!

    This pudding looks amazing! Chocolate heaven. Sigh.

    Reply
  14. I know and i agree too..help is so easy to find in India and its inexpensive too..but here i never thought of hiring one as i enjoy doing all my chores my way too..and besides we don’t have that mush work and if i hire someone then i will be sitting idle and gaining wait:)…

    Pudding looks heavenly

    Reply
  15. When I first came to US – I used to often say, next to my family and friends, I miss the maid the most. And I still do. Especially when dinner decisions are made on number of utensils have to be cleaned and crockery is bought simply cause it is dishwasher safe. I would hire a maid in an instant if they weren’t so expensive here…

    Treat the maid humanely and pay her well. Its a two way street.

    Great pudding…

    Reply
  16. What a grand desert!!

    the dessert looks so fabulous, rich & apart too!

    MMMMMMMM,…what’s not to love???

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  17. Chocolate custard yummmy..

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  18. This looks totally scrumptious and delectable! I like doing things my own way too.

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  19. If I could, I would hire a maid too. I understand that we can do all of it, but if you can afford it, why not give someone else a livelihood. It keeps the country’s economy at a balance somewhat..
    Check out my new event if you are interested – http://versatilekitchen.blogspot.com/2010/04/baking-from-book-breakfast.html

    Reply
  20. Maids and drivers rule our life. I had to bring a dinner forward because my maid said she’s going to bunk after that

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  21. Chocolate custard pudding looks absolutely divine..fortunately i dont need maids here..enjoyed reading the maid matters..

    Reply
  22. I think its perfectly fine to have home help, u pay them well, look after all their needs, help their families and they are more than glad to be with u …..coz they have a better lifestyle all thanx to u…and infact then even if u dont want they wont leave u :-))))
    So im with u too…..
    Love the chocolaty pudding delight ;-)))
    super delicious …and quick to put by too :-)

    Reply
  23. sob..sob..i am the maid n the memsaab u see…price u pay for staying abroad.
    the pudding looks chocolatey…yum
    thanks for dropping by.

    Reply
  24. maid woes!! sob sob! ask me…sheba our maid matters are never ending…i got used to nohelp in moscow but then back in india I am SPOILT again.I feel cham is right we are not at all exploiting them…we can use that word if they are underpaid.And you get so much time for yourself otherwise i feel your energy gets dissipated so much which you can use to develop your potential rather than using your energy in doing the mundane jobs.don’t you think so….advice aside….that pudding looks divine….my MIL makes that …and this pudding is so popular in the defence parties too!

    Reply
  25. This looks like a delicious pudding….very rich and chocolatey!

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  26. I am the guilty one. I hate doing household chores. I only like cooking.

    Don’t have a maid as well. I do the cooking and hb does SOME cleaning. I mean – the dishwasher cleans the dishes and iRobot vacuums the floor….etc etc ;p

    Reply
  27. I am so happy that u visited my blog and thanks for the lovely comments…I am feeling very much glad too, to become a part of your wonderful and creatively accomplished blog…following you to get in touch with u…

    Reply
  28. Cham

     /  March 31, 2010

    Hiring a people=U give an opportunity to the person or family to earn their daily bread in a right way. No word of exploiting! Love ur choco pudding!

    Reply
  29. maids…. hum, “lucky you” I’d say!!!

    I don’t mind hiring maids either & certainly won’t feel that I ‘m exploiting them, as far as they’re willing to do the job and happy to work… after all, that’s a way to create job offers too in one way & get helped on the other, so everybody is satisfied right? if I get to live in India & if hiring maids are still affordable, I wouldn’t mind letting them do some of the house works !!!

    the chocolate pudding looks absolutely delectable btw !!!

    Reply
  30. Sorry dear, for all the mess, that was from my husband’s id. Please ignore it.
    Sorry, that link is not working, so posting it once again. Award Link

    Reply
  31. Sorry, that link is not working, so posting it once again. Award Link

    Reply
  32. hmmm…maid ..i dunt think its really bad…when we paying to someone who is in really needy…

    by d way sheba…u have nice blog ..wth lot of things to go thru…enjoying to go thru..frst time here…glad to follow u…and the pudding looks grt

    Reply
  33. Woow!!! lovely chocolate n biscuit pudding ,,looks delicious n rich. About maid matters, in my house myself do all the works if i cldnt do means my hubbby will help me in that case ,,,,but for work going womens it is big hectic thing caring both sides n hv to balance their activities too…..

    Reply
  34. I prefer doing work on my own in the way I want it instead of giving 100 instructions. But, I too agree with the point, you are paying someone who is really in need of money. So if we can do the work by our own do it and if you really need help go for it, nothing wrong in that.
    Pudding recipe is very easy to follow, delicious indeed !!

    Please grad the award I have shared with u here. My hearty wishes to receive more, Congrats Sheba !!

    Reply
  35. Nice click and yummy pudding!

    Reply
  36. The best thing about the post is the video :p…u will sure survive with or without maid..no worries dear…inbtw pudding looks drool worthy..

    Reply
  37. Sheeba,

    Chocolate pudding looks yummy, Having maid is really help. I can’t say because i am living without them. hubby helps me lot. so life is moving smoothly.

    Reply
  38. can relate to this post a lot ,,,;-) specially whn i have just two months to enjoy my own country,,,;-)

    Reply
  39. I love how India is so full of domestic help, seriously I am jealous. Look at it this way…at least you are paying someone who really needs the money, right?

    Reply
    • s

       /  March 31, 2010

      yes ameena..that is one way of looking at it..and no doubt they do need the money.

      Reply
  40. Delicious pudding…yumm

    Reply
  41. aw…sheba….”maid matters”…one of the most important thing in my life…maybe i should be feeling guilty saying this but honestly i don’t….when we moved to bahrain n’ i had no help…i felt like i was doing work at home, going to work, coming back n’ doing more work…i don’t know how my husband tolerated my mood swings those days….but i felt like i had no time to myself….my husband does not help me with house chores n’ we have gone through that phase of me trying to make him do it n’ him not doing it n’ in the end i end up fighting with him like crazy….which does no good…n’ now that i have an indian lady who comes in thrice a week for just 90mins each day n’ i feel so relieved…here i pay almost 10times more just for 3 days than i was paying in bangalore…but honestly speaking in a country where i have no one else to help me….i feel great that she is there….

    btwn…this was my first time on RC…you are right, her blog is good….n’ the pudding recipe up here looks really simple n’ grt…:)

    Reply
    • s

       /  March 31, 2010

      well thats one reason I fear to leave India to live abroad…but although many would disapprove I cant imagine life with NO help. My sis lives in the US..she’s a doc and she works and runs a home..I admire her but wold i trade places…..nope!its such a sad thing to be saying…but thats how I truly feel although my sometimes home chores can be therapeutic….only sometimes!

      Reply
  42. What a sinful chocolate treat! Perfect for any chocoholic!

    Reply
  43. hey there…thanks for the comment..well if you dont have buttermilk, you can use plain yoghurt or even sour cream..but the easiest would be to add about a tsp of lime juice or vinegar to a cup of milk, let it stand for about 10 minutes and then mix well.
    Hope its helps.

    Reply
  44. Talking about Domestic Help… I’m not being Mean but I’m currently missing my maid like anything… Take a look @ my home and you’ll understand how it looks when you have an earthquake … all scattered .. !
    P.S. Hope she comes 2mrw !!

    Reply
    • s

       /  April 8, 2010

      yeah! Kanchan..thats exactly how my house looked for a week after my maid left! thankfully alls well now:)

      Reply
  45. I feel the same when my maid takes leave too.First day I am devastated and then I get used to the chores,I do it as I like it and before lunch everything is done and I find cleaning the house therapeutic..call me insane,if you would!!!

    Ria’s blog is truly a treasure house..the pudding looks divine!!

    Reply
    • s

       /  April 8, 2010

      Divya I totally agree..I have been doing things round the house and its def therapeutic……

      Reply
  46. Agree with your view, hiring help is mutual help for us and the people we seek help from.

    Delicious pudding! Must try it out..

    Reply
  47. It looks LUSH! :) Thanks for trying, Sheba.

    Reply

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