Additional thoughts

23 Oct

*I feel I was a bit hasty in forming my opinion on #metoo. It seems to have provided an outlet that wasn’t seen to exist before. I withdraw my reservations about it.

*I am deeply fond of soft, creamy cheeses but they are hard to find in India. Brie and Camembert are still found in fancy shops, but what I really give my heart to is frishkaese, which was wonderfully cheap in Germany, especially if you bought an in-house brand. For around Rs.35 I’d have a 200gm tub of herbed frishkaese, which is a fraction of the price of Amul cheese.

The Germans also make a variety of soft cheeses that taste similar to Brie and Camembert, all for under Euros 2. I love Germany, have I mentioned? 😉

Cheese is not a viable thing to ingest in the hot climates of either Delhi or Calcutta, the two cities that are home to me. So most of the time the lack of availability or expensive imports don’t bother me. Besides, Philadelphia cream cheese isn’t, in my opinion, half as tasty as your average frishkaese.

Sometimes though, the craving hits, and in winters it is permissible to indulge. It was with great delight that I discovered this year that a home-made substitute exists that is very close to the taste I am seeking. And that is a hung-curd dip that my mother makes. When you hang curd long enough it assumes a texture and taste quite like frishkaese, and when you add in whatever additions appeal to you, like garlic, chopped coriander etc etc, it becomes suitably elevated to divine! A bonus: this is actually healthy and good for all weather consumption.

*Salt and vinegar chips are rather yummy. INOX makes a brand of kettle-cooked chips which delivers this flavour at Rs.40 for 50 gms. It’s quite good, though the chips aren’t as tongue-curlingly sour as I’d like. I am, however, not paying ridiculous prices to try the other brands that offer this in India. When I’m not PhDing, (which seems to be always these days!) I begin to fantasize about making these at home, without the maltodextrin.

*I discovered English Breakfast tea in December 2011, in the panic of MPhil coursework exams. I’ve loved it ever since, but haven’t ever had it with milk, because I prefer my tea without milk and sugar. Today I was craving a milky drink and found it tastes as good, maybe even better, with milk.

*The fridge went kaput yesterday and I will be fridgeless for a week until we buy a new one. I’ve never lived without a fridge, ever. I’m very dependent on it, a reflection of my extreme privilege ofcourse, given how monstrously expensive those things are!, and I’m driven to near panic at the thought of existing without one. (I’m almost as dependent on washing machines.) My neighbours are very, very nice and they will keep my cooked food for me whilst I woman up to the challenge of planning my meals without the cushion of storageability.

*This post is almost entirely about food.

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2 Responses to “Additional thoughts”

  1. Peter Wells aka Countingducks October 27, 2017 at 5:09 pm #

    As you may know, I am a lover of all things cheese and read your comments about this addictive product with great interest. As to the “Me to” thing. What has struck me is how widespread this appalling experience is, and I speak as a man with four sisters and three daughters who I would hate to be exposed to this kind of gross conduct. Have a lovely weekend, and I wish I could visit your blog more often. It is one of my favourites, and written by one of my favourite bloggers 🙂

    • astudentinkolkata October 29, 2017 at 7:36 pm #

      I did not know, but it is good to know, that you are a part of the fellowship of cheese lovers 🙂

      If #MeToo has indeed increased awareness of the scale and pervasiveness of the experience, I am glad. I definitely see that some people are making emotional confession style statements of their own experiences, and I am glad for that.

      #MeToo still leaves me with many misgivings. It has led to, for instance, a wave of ‘naming and shaming’ of perpetrators on social media via things like ‘lists’. One such list circulating is of male Professors and academics. I haven’t put my finger on what exactly troubles me about the many emotions that #MeToo plays with; perhaps I will some time soon.

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