Browsing Tag

calcutta

Espresso Shots

the girl called rhino

a wail rose up in the calm late afternoon air. the tail end of it came stalking into the room with the plump little girl, who threw herself on the bed, burying her face in the cushion lying on top of the carefully covered pillows. the wail turned into a smothered whimper now, though as far as the calm of the afternoon was concerned, both had the same effect on it. “oh ma, why’re you behaving like that? what’s the…

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food

if winter comes, can motorer kochuri be far behind

food is so much about memory, isn’t it? i can’t even hear the words “motorer kochuri” without thinking of my mother. my mother was not a great cook, in fact she was never too keen to visit the kitchen. she had, however, the most discerning sense of taste and understanding of the various stages of cooking. she was particular about the spices and condiments she believed a dish called for. the balance of ingredients was important, getting the right inflection…

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Espresso Shots

the decision

they started cutting the house the day after holi, so that they could finish before the monsoon came. she sat on her bed, legs crossed, staring at the zigzag of blue and dull pink on the fading green counterpane, almost meditative, as she heard the workers arrive. it was two minutes after nine. usually in calcutta, nothing happened on time. bini babu left for work at ten thirty every day, his office started at nine thirty. the cook rarely entered…

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food indi

of chilli chicken, hakka chow, and other such important things.

this morning, a friend who had tracked me down after years, thanks to writersbrew (that thought makes me so happy i listened to a young girl and started writing here), sent me a lovely little video on whatsapp. it was an edited version of the one here. do take a look, bound to touch you. video credit uploader i saw the short video and grinned. so many memories, delightful tastes traipsing in my head, making me hungry. i have always…

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Espresso Shots

the offering : a short story

the flames lunged up, their ends tapering, blowing, dancing, impatient and in a rush to catch the khoi. the parched rice, light, plump and crisp white, had just started to slide off the winnowing fan. it floated down, a lacework of shimmering grain. a streak of fire shot forward and caught a khoi. there was a spark of light, then it was gone. a flash of heat hit her face. the sound of the khoi crackling as it burnt shot…

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Espresso Shots

hidden flowers

  the heavy teakwood doors burst open. binota and gopaler ma looked up startled, a few bodis fell off  the muslin cloth onto the mosaic floor and broke and scattered. she came running out, her pale pink jamdani saree billowing, the pallu flying behind her. she held the fine gauzy gold tinted cotton bunched up in her fists on either side, lifting her saree at least half a foot off the ground, her ankles clearly visible, almost her shin, as…

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Espresso Shots

just another evening : a short story

“it is really the will!” barun said the words emphatically, slapping the table in front. the tea cup rattled on the saucer. krishna threw an exasperated glance at him. “sometimes you don’t have a choice…” chacko murmured, a meditative calm in his tone. it seemed to get barun. “nonsense! you always do. free will… we all have it, i tell you!” he exclaimed, thrusting back into the lumpy brown cushion and settling in a bit more, getting comfortable. “shotu da,…

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food indi

“as wrinkled as my face…” a recipe for tomato mahasha

there are several tomato mahasha recipes on the net. they all sound pretty good. one of them particularly, since you stuff the tomatoes with raw rice and chicken and it just feels so complex and authentic. my mother in law would say once in a way as she went about getting the stuffing ready that the really good baghdadi jewish cooks never cooked what went into the mahasha beforehand. then she’d forget about all that and make it her way.…

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