Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Bad food memories

Why is it that bad food memories are so clearly etched in one's memory? I'm sure they go to the permanent and not to the temporal lobe in the brain (that one that was damaged in 50 First Dates so Drew Barrymore would go to sleep and wake up the next day with no memory of the day gone by: she had totally lost her ability to store short-term memory).
> Anyway, we were just talking about samosas, and disgust clearly registered on my face: I don't despise samosas, but I can remember ever so clearly that once I was given one where the potato inside (which serves as the filling) hadn't been peeled, and the masala was obviously too much because the filling lacked the familiar haldi (turmeric) yellow shade we Indians so love to add to everything -- instead of rang de basanti chola it should be rang de basanti chhola) OK that was awful but you get the drift -- and the filling was brown; so I am perpetually wary of unpeeled potatoes inside samosas.
> The second bad food memory I have is of kheer with malai. At boarding school they couldn't be bothered to strain the milk while making kheer and hence I tried, one unsuccessful afternoon, to spread my kheer on my quarter plate and then press my katori down on it, so I would conceal the kheer and avoid eating it (they even tried some horrible versions like orange kheer and brown kheer). As luck would have it, a vigilant teacher saw me and threatened to debadge me (which back then was worse than being court martialled and having your medals stripped from your uniform). And what badge did I have, or what post did I hold? Library official if you please, of the junior school, which meant I had to help the librarian store books, look out for vandalism, maintain ledgers... Anyway...
> The third memory is kadi. Yes, again the bright yellow curry made of besan with the pakodas in it. I distinctly remember the onions in the stuffing being left raw and I hated kadi therefore. My mom desperately tried to undo the damage school had done (as if making me eat was the standard by which I would measure her love) but my hate relationship with kadi took a lot of healing time... Now I can still eat it once in a while.
> Mutton. Hated it for years because of the way it was cooked in school, Don't want to launch into a tirade because even hard-core carnivores may feel sick after the description. Suffice to say, it looked and tasted puke-worthy. So I became a vegetarian for four months in school afer which I'd go home and go back to being a non-veg.
That's all I can remember right now, full as I am after eating a paneer pakoda and a bread pakoda.


Blogger writer-in-egg-style said...

Hey, hey, hey... amazing. Dining hall kadi, kheer and mutton. Three dots. Amazing. Great tongues respond alike.

15 October, 2004  
Blogger writer-in-egg-style said...

On matters of hostel food, a terrific line is to be found in a book called 'The IITians'---about hostel life.

Eating the hostel food, says the author, made him think afresh. It made him realize that the very idea of 'taste', as he thought he had, was “but a subjective illusion, a marketing conspiracy, a social construct”.

16 October, 2004  

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