April 18, 2013 § Leave a comment
If there is a place to eat Indian in London, it is Dishoom. I am not adventurous when it comes to food, no, I could eat the same thing three-times a day, seven days a week. I could live off porridge and bananas for months, I could have chicken and bread all day every day, as long as I have my water and wine, as long as I have access to fruit, I will eat to live and oh I will be happy. I was taught to appreciate food, good food, great food even..at home. Not being able to cook (an egg, potatoes, porridge, tissue paper pancakes, that is as far as I go) and not enjoying time spent in the kitchen one bit, I have to admit I probably ate and tried out more ingredients in the last 5 years than I did in the first 25 years of my existence.
And a day came when I tried Indian and the day was good. A friend who I hope (!) does not get married until I am rich enough to visit him and participate in his fancy Indian wedding, taught Senior to cook a real Indian curry in our tiny 2 square meter kitchen at the time and it was by far one of the most beautiful things I have witnessed , cliché as it might sound, magic was happening on the cooker. These tiny black seeds, the miniature balls of hotness and fat, and onion, the mountains of onion! to produce tastes and smells even now I struggle to describe. It was as if the entire Indian market of spices hid in our tiny little cupboards and a world of taste exploded on our tongues.
And a day came when I tried Indian at Dishoom. And the day was as good. With Dishoom, and I will not go into how mouth-watering and wonderful the food is, because if you have been to Dishoom, you know the truth and if you have not, you must, but it is not merely the food that creates the experience and transports you into the times you were not, it is something which I never appreciated or put much thought into before – the cups, the labels, the design of every item around you, the soft leather chairs, the marble desktops, the abundance of cutlery, the paper menus, the luxurious nature of everything you lay your eyes upon – the toothpaste clippings in the ladies, the books, the retro telephone sets, the wood, oh the wood as soft as silk and as sensuous as the human skin. These are the characters, these are the story tellers which elevate the food to something beyond nourishment and nutrients. This is what creates the set as theatrical as a summer’s day in the park and as eventful as a quiet sit down by the talking river; so powerful that you want more and you know you were and you will remember to return.