Foodie Matters

Being a total foodie, it’s surprising that I’ve not written much about food on my blog. This tag about food caught my eye on several blogs and took my fancy, and it seemed like just the perfect thing to write about at the moment. So, here we go with the foodie tag!

Rules: One has to basically list five memorable meals ever eaten: It could be anything that makes the meal memorable – the food, the place, the place you were in your life when you ate, the company, the weather, the ambiance – heck, the guy who served the food!”.

I’m listing some of the most memorable meals I’ve ever had.

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First: Dinner at Pondicherry

This year, for Republic Day, we managed to sneak in a short vacation to Pondicherry – the better half and me. Little did I know that it would go on to become one of the most beautiful memories of my life. I had memories of Pondicherry from when I visited there long, long ago, very long ago, when I was an itsy girl. One of my uncles had booked a hotel for us, where we stayed for the first day of the 3-day trip. The second day, we shifted to an awesome heritage hotel called Villa Bayoud, bang opposite the beach. We ate dinner at the little rooftop restaurant that it had, and it was the most awesome thing ever. I don’t know what made it the most awesome – the company, the ambience or the wonderful menu that they had.

I remember it was almost 10 PM and time for the restaurant to close. We were the last two people to finish eating, and all the waiters, except one, had scooted off. Just a single bulb above our table glowed, the rest had been put off. We could hear the waves of the sea creating a melody and look out over the dark waters from where we were seated. Soft music was playing, and we were happy because were back from a live band performance. We needed no persuasion to just get up and dance for a brief while the waiter went down to get our desserts. When he was back, we were seated, eating our dinner with a grin on our faces, like two happy kids. I’ll remember that day forever.

It was as if we’d gone to Pondicherry just to eat. We discovered a wonderful place, Hot Breads, and had an amazing European-style breakfast the next day, which was too yummy to forget. I’ll also always remember a quaint little icecream parlour that we discovered at Pondicherry. There were hundreds of flavours on the menu, and we tasted ginger icecream for the first time in life.

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Second: Macaroni at Thailand

It was a hot day in Thailand, when we were honeymooning. We had walked a whole lot and shopped a great deal. We were tired and hungry and wanted to eat some decent vegetarian food. Anything would do. We found a quaint little sphagetteria, and were happy to know it had decent vegetarian fare.

We ordered two lime sodas, a vegetable pizza and a cheesy macaroni. The service was quick, the place was beautiful, and the macaroni that the woman served was one of the best I have had till date. I don’t remember the name of the restaurant, but I can still exactly remember how the macaroni felt in my mouth – heavenly.

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Third: Maggi Memories

I cannot not mention Maggi here, which happens to be one of my favourite foods. There are a few memorable Maggi feasts, which I think I’ll always remember: The first was a cold, windy and rainy day in Ahmedabad, when I walked down home from office, unable to find a single auto. Not that I minded. I loved walking in the rain and absorbing the sights and sounds and smells of one of the first showers of the season. A hot bath, dry towel and a steaming bowl of Maggi was waiting for me when I got home. I’ve never been more grateful for a home or for food, I think, than I was on that day.

The second was another chilly winter day. I was rather low, as I was facing problems at work. I met up with my friends at IIM, Ahmedabad, and they took me out for Maggi. I didn’t know before then that there was a small stall that serves awesomely made Maggi near IIM. I had gone there straight after work, and was grateful for the warmth that the bowl of Maggi provided me. The conversation with my friends warmed my blood, and I could take a sensible decision after that.

The third was on a train journey from Ahmedabad to Bangalore, just before my wedding. It was cold, once again, and I was tired. I was going back home after meeting the better half’s extended family. I was tired and couldn’t wait to get back home. The journey seemed to never get over. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw that cup Maggi was available in the pantry. I will never forget the way it injected new life into me.

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Fourth: 2008 birthday dinner

My friends made my 2008 birthday dinner very, very special for me. There were a lot of fiascos in the planning, but that is precisely what made the day all the more enjoyable. We went out for dinner at Jumbo King, and had a fantastic time. The meal was simple, just Vada Pavs, but the time that we spent left me smiling for days on end.

Here’s a more detailed account of the day.

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Fifth: Nani special kozhambu

My Nani in Chennai is too old and weak to cook any more. Which is a great loss to our family, because she is a fantastic cook. My personal favourites from the dishes she used to cook are Vendekkai Morkozhambu and Kotthavarangai Vettalkozhambu. Whenever I used to come down to Chennai for the summer holidays, she used to prepare jugfuls of these two things, and I used to be the major consumer. Her morkozhambu and vettalkozhambu had a special kind of taste, which no one has been able to duplicate so far. Maybe, a granny’s special love for her grandchild?

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Sixth: Doddabetta high tea

Last year, we made a trip to Ooty, just the two of us. Ours was the last vehicle to go into Doddabetta, the famed highest peak of Tamilnadu, which is also famous for its dipping temperatures. Man, it was cold! I was shivering and my teeth were chattering. I was half dead, but a cup of tea and hot bajjis injected life in me. Those were the last two plates of bajjis and the last two cups of tea that the stall sold us before shutting down for the day. I’ll never be able to forget the way that simple meal literally warmed my blood.

We also had the best Uttappams we have ever tasted at Ooty. I hearted them.

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Seventh: Municipal Market Ragda Pattice

Shifting to the southern part of the country after having lived in Ahmedabad for 25+ years was not an easy job. I missed everything about Ahmedabad madly after marriage, specially the food. The food in Bangalore was so very different. Not that I didn’t learn to love Bangalore food later, but I craved for my city food when I was newly married. I remember the way I attacked all the chat stalls in Ahmedabad the first time I visited after marriage. I have a personal favourite there – a Ragda Pattice stall near Municipal Market. My new husband couldn’t stop gaping at me as I devoured two plates of it. Probably, he thought he married a demon or something, but at the moment, I was just concerned with savouring every little bite of it, and trying to remember the taste forever.

Icecreams at Naturals after that made the day! Perfecto!

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Eighth: Kattu Brinjal Curry and Rasam

On our recent trip to Masanagudi, we stayed in a resort inside the forest. The cook there was wonderful! I remember the rasam and the brinjal curry he had made for us. It was just SO good. The smell of the rasam was just AAAHHH! I kept bugging the better half about it, and we remember it as Kattu (Forest) curry and rasam.

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Ninth: Chikmagalur Memories

At the homestay we rented our trip to Chikmagalur, the cook was so wonderful, we wanted to kidnap her and bring her home. She used to prepare famous Chikmagalur dishes for us and we just used to hog. I specially remember the ghee rice and mixed vegetable curry she had prepared once for dinner. The taste was awesome!

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Tenth: Aloo Paratha at Diu

Our trip to Diu last year was fun.The beauty of the place far surpassed what I had expected. We had fun romping around on the beach. We discovered a shack just near the hotel we had booked, and tried out Aloo Paratha there once. We loved it so much that we ate there every day. There was this family who ran the shack – a young couple and their three kids. The lady made wonderful parathas on a chulha. Bliss!

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Eleventh: Burst of cheese

Ah, the Cheese Burst pizzas from Dominoes! I adore them, and the day we order them in for dinner automatically becomes a good day. This year, for our first wedding anniversary, we decided to order in a Cheese Burst pizza! I know, we are one-of-a-kind!! There was something extra tasty about the pizza that day, I can’t exactly put my finger on it. The taste still lingers in my memory!

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I’m not sure that’s all, but that’s all I can remember at the moment. What are your foodie moments? I would love to know!

Images: All images, except the Ooty and Pondicherry ones, are taken from Google. I am too lazy to add the links now, but do let me know if you have an objection to any pic.

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14 Comments

Filed under Musings, My pics, Places

14 responses to “Foodie Matters

  1. “The food in Bangalore was so very different. Not that I didn’t learn to love Bangalore food later, but I craved for my city food when I was newly married.” – After having spent 25 years in Ahmedabad, I must say you are unfortunate to have landed up in this city(when it comes to food,especially).

    Anyway, it was a nice post – yummy one indeed.

    • priyaiyer

      @kalyan

      thanks!! glad you liked the post.
      “After having spent 25 years in Ahmedabad, I must say you are unfortunate to have landed up in this city(when it comes to food,especially).” – I beg to differ. I agree, initially I was pissed off with the lack of things to do and eat in Bangalore, but not now. I believe every city has something unique, something special to offer those who fall in love with it. I am seeing Bangalore that way now. I am trying to explore Bangalore and discovering its specialities. I am falling in love with Bangalore, food and all!! 🙂

      • Priya Akka,

        You don’t have to beg to differ. I knew I was a bit exaggerative there. It’s just a bachelor’s/software engineer’s anger and nothing else. Unga aathukkarar intha oorla bachelora irunthara?

        Bangalore explore maadi and enjoy maadi. Please do let us know if you find anything unique or interesting in Bangalore.(like that Banyan tree and Janapada loka).

  2. “Her morkozhambu and vettalkozhambu had a special kind of taste, which no one has been able to duplicate so far” – 100% true. Normal sambhar and rasam can be prepared deliciously by anyone. When it comes to morkozhambu and vettalkozhambu, pattis’ expertise comes into play.

    • priyaiyer

      @kalyan

      “When it comes to morkozhambu and vettalkozhambu, pattis’ expertise comes into play.” – I agree. I believe pattis can make even ordinary chutney and podi and sambar special 🙂

  3. Gorgeous post! I am so hungry now. 🙂

  4. s

    wonderful post…makes me realise I dont really have many food memories..i just seem to gobble my food down:)

    • priyaiyer

      @s

      hey!! welcome here, and thanks for the comment!
      LOL…. I have so many food memories that I couldn’t put them all down.. 🙂 These are the best…

  5. yummm…mouth watering post, feeling so hungry now, and it’s the middle of the night. What to do? Maggi Noodles of course 😀

    • priyaiyer

      @nish

      hey!! welcome here!! thanks for the comment.
      glad to know you liked the post 🙂 maggi is a saviour, isn’t it? i don’t know what i would have done if not for maggi in certain situations 😀

  6. priyaiyer

    @kalyan

    🙂 i understand how that feels… yes, the better half has been born, brought up and educated here.. in bangalore.. he’s not as much of a foodie as i am, and prefers home-made food most of the time.. so i guess he managed. 🙂
    nevertheless, i think there are quite a few options of eatables available in bangalore even for students and bachelors.. in all varieties.. of course, south indian food would take prominence, but i find there are several other options too.. it’s just about discovering the places that are right for you.. that said, i am speaking of how i find bangalore today.. i don’t know what the situation was here years ago..
    i hope to explore much more of the city that i am coming to love now – bangalore. definitely will let you know of any good places that i find. you do the same too!
    cheers!! 🙂

  7. Hi! Hopped on here from the other Priya’s(softypink) blog. Do you happen to have the Kothavarangai vethalkuzhambu recipe? I’m drooling all over the keyboard just thinking how amazing it will be and want to give it shot. Do share if you have it or can find out!

    thanks,
    Shankari!

  8. priyaiyer

    @shankari

    welcome here!
    Will mail you the recipe soon. 🙂

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