All posts tagged: India

Pomfret Chutney Masala

By AMIT CHAUDHURI

From the kitchen of Bijoya Chaudhuri
Handed down to her son, Amit Chaudhuri

Author’s note: I grew up in Bombay on my mother’s magnificent
version of East Bengali food, a cuisine reinterpreted and perfected—and often
added to with original recipes—by my grandmother in Sylhet and then my
mother in her decades in Bombay. The recipe below is included in my mother’s
Bengali cookbook, published in Calcutta in 2010, and translated recently by
Chitralekha Basu. But this is not a dish that represents East Bengali food; it
comes out of our contact with Bombay, and is not only my mother’s version of
a well-known Parsi dish: it is her response to my craving for it. Its main feature
is the chutney in its name, made with coriander and mint leaves and coconut
pulp: the seaweed-green condiment is one of the most delicious to be found in
the Konkan region, imported, here by the Parsis, and then by an East Bengali.

Pomfret Chutney Masala
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Mom’s Dal

By NINA McCONIGLEY

From the kitchen of Nirmala Swamidoss McConigley
Handed down to her daughter, Nina McConigley

Dal
1 cup of red lentils (washed well)
3–4 cups water
2 tbsp oil
1 onion
6–7 cloves garlic (cut in two)
1/4 tsp asafetida (sometimes called hing), you get this at Indian stores
1/4 tsp turmeric
Jalapeño
1 tomato (add at the end)
Salt to taste
Fresh cilantro for garnish

Mom’s Dal
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Papad

By SUKETU MEHTA

Papad was the bard of the masses. He sat during the endless school classes
on the bench next to me, composing rhymes which could be appreciated by
all for their elemental simplicity. Thus:

O dear
Come near
Don’t fear
Have cheer
Beer is here

Papad
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The Kindness of Strangers

By NONITA KALRA

I am constantly asked why I persist in calling my city Bombay when it has long been renamed Mumbai. A rather articulate but annoying French academic even attributed inherent anarchy to my dissension. “If everyone called cities by the names they preferred, how would anyone know where they are?” I opted out of the argument. I would know. I would always know. With my eyes wide shut. Mumbai may be a zip code, but Bombay is my home.

The Kindness of Strangers
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Death Trip

By SAHIBA GILL 

water

There was no after-the-rain smell when I was in Varanasi, not even along the river Ganges where waters are wide in January; the white fog curtain erases the farthest bank so that just sky, boats, and water make up the shore. In the city’s brown streets, trash runs steadily through silt-carved gullies. Waste sandcastles build in its empty lots.

Death Trip
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Small Kindness

By ANIKA GUPTA

A year ago, a girl my age was raped in New Delhi.  Several days later she died of her injuries in a hospital in Singapore.  Her intestines were so badly mangled she would have required a transplant to live.  If she had lived, she would never have eaten without the aid of a tube.

Small Kindness
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Allahabad

By ARI SITAS

from Around the World in Eighty Days: The India Section

 

It was important to have a conversation with
Pandit Nehru in Allahabad
After the visitors left the fine house
We sat down for tea
Overlooking the confluence of the sacred rivers
I marveled at the variety of trees

Allahabad
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Christmas in India

By COURTNEY KNOWLTON 

Dispatches will be taking a two-week holiday break and will resume publishing on Wednesday, January 11thUntil then, please enjoy this seasonal dispatch about a Christmas vacation gone wrong…

I always say that I fell in love with my husband at Kinko’s.  Charged with printing blown up photographs for the annual fundraiser for the afterschool program where we both worked, I arrived to pick them up only to find the pictures grainy and only half of the job completed. While I panicked that I’d be fired and was ready to scream at the woman at the counter, Terence calmly, but firmly explained what needed to be done and the urgency with which it had to be completed. We’d been dating for less than two months, but in that moment I thought, this is the person I need by my side. Three years later, we were engaged. For our Christmas affianced, we booked a trip overseas, eager to show our independence, and maybe even create a new tradition apart from our families. On December 22, 2009, we arrived to New Delhi, India. Our plan was to spend a few days there, and then on Christmas Eve we would take a train to Agra so that we could see the Taj Mahal on Christmas Day. From there, we’d travel through Rajasthan and eventually fly to Mumbai.

Christmas in India
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