Staying in a hostel has many advantages. Yes, you heard me right. Advantages! The biggest advantage is getting an opportunity to eat chutneys, pickles and snacks from all over the country, some of them which sound bizarre but are actually quite delicious. Here are the three strangest, yet the most delicious things that I have ever eaten.
The first time I heard its name, I immediately felt nauseated. My adventurous friends, who did not hesitate to try them at the first go, loved it! They prodded me try it out telling me how amazing the chutney tasted. So one day, I steeled my stomach and decided to try it out. I took a little bit of it and mixed it with a small portion of dal and rice and eat a spoonful.
At first, I could not taste anything but soon there was an explosion of flavour in my mouth. It was tangy, sweet and tasted like mango pickles at first but soon my tongue was on fire. Mustard oil and red chillies overwhelmed my sense and just as the explosion had started suddenly, it stopped. I was stunned! I immediately another spoonful and this time the explosion of flavours was not so surprising. I slowly savoured the chutney mixed with dal and rice and let them take over my senses. Squeamishness gone, I ate red ant chuntney whenever one of my friends deigned to give it to me. (Usually, I bribed them with chocolates :P)
Another curious thing that I have eaten are rum cherries on a stick. On Christmas eve I was gifted a box full of them as a present. Three beautiful cherries on a stick glistening with sugary syrup and little flecks of caramel were trying to seduce my olfactory senses and I finally gave in and picked one out. Sugar flooded my mouth followed by the bitterness of rum. An elusive hint of caramel and sweetness of the cherries came in next and finally, I was left with a bittersweet after taste that made me want to eat the cherries all over again.
Sun flower seeds
I had read in Enid Blyton’s thatcetain species of birds loved sunflower seeds. So when one of dorm mates gave me a packet of them, I promptly opened them and fed them to some birds. When I returned, I told her that the birds loved her seeds and I hoped that she would give me another packet so that I could feed them once again. At first she just stared at me and then suddenly she started laughing. She laughed and laughed for the next ten minutes and when she managed to catch her breath, she said, “Didi, the seeds were for you, not for the birds” and went into peals of laughter again. Later, she told me that sunflower seeds were a popular snack in Burma and that her parents had bought them for her. She handed me another packet.
The seeds were curious looking. I cracked opened one and popped it into my mouth. At first, I could taste ginger and garlic and a faint whiff of some herbs. Was it coriander? I could not say. I popped in a few more and suddenly felt like I was eating salted pistachios which at been roasted along with some ginger and garlic. It was a peculiar taste but it was so damn addictiveThe seeds were nutty and crunchy and oh so flavourful. I was told that it also contained sweet root, a common condiment in Burma. I finished the entire packet in ten minutes, hungry for more. I found out that the best way to enjoy sunflower seeds was to have them along with a cup elaichi wali chai. The nuttiness of the seeds would leave a pleasant aftertaste as I sipped on kadak chai. After drinking a piping hot cup of tea, I found have another handful of seeds, this time allowing the flavours of elaichi become one with that of the seeds. Truly, a match made in heaven.
After falling in love with all three delicacies, I have become more adventurous food and I am always game to try out something new. I believe that food that looks good tastes good and what better way to serve food than in pristine Borosil serve ware? They look gorgeous and they definitely make the food look much better. J
This post has been written as a part of blogging contest held by Indiblogger.com. For more information on Borosil, you can visit: myborosil.com