At the altar of Culinary Delight

The past week has been momentous for me. I've discovered gifts I never knew I possessed, abilities that I thought were too far beyond me, accomplishing feats I never imagined I could. It has been a moment of self-discovery, of empowerment, of hope and inspiration, the start of a new era where anything is possible and nothing is out of reach. As I bask in the glory of the self-belief it has brought me, I feel I can do anything; I can sing like Presley and dance even better, act like Russell Crowe and look even better, dribble like Ronaldo and dive even better, win as much as Tiger and be more discreet, hit a forehand like Federer and cry even better, score more runs than Tendulkar and be a little less humble. I would go on but I don't want people to think I'm exaggerating.

So what prompted this bout of realistic assessment of my capabilities? It was the surreptitious and wholly earth-shatering discovery that I could COOK!!

Big deal I hear you say? Not for me! For me, cooking was this magical art of converting the inedible to the edible, of taking unknown quantities of secret ingredients and combining them in elaborately intricate procedures, say 3.3 teaspoons of X added to 5.7 pinches of Y heated for 13.3 minutes at 189 degrees, all the while chanting some indecipherable mantras, invoking the culinary Gods to bless your offering and turn it into a scrumptious savoury delight.

It was, I believed, a skill mastered over years of unflinching devotion and unwavering dedication. Many a chicken would have to be sacrificed at the altar of culinary delights to gain favour of the mighty gastronomical Gods. And once that favour was bestowed upon these select elite, they were to be revered, adored and preferably get married to, for with one sweep of their magic ladle they could conjure up exotic delicacies that not only filled an empty stomach, but also the hole in your soul that you never knew you had, satisfying cravings too deep to be revealed.

And now as I join this band of plumpy men and women, I look back at all those times I had takeaway, or got ready to eat ready-to-eat, on the days I survived on little more than a bag of salty chips and burnt ham-less-burgers, or hardened pizzas with baked-but-not-fried fries. Those memories remind me of how far I’ve come, and how sometimes necessity combined with a bit of desperation and luck can be the perfect recipe for a new beginning.

Here is proof for the skeptical, a Hyderabadi Chicken Dum Biryani designed to arouse equal parts of envy and hunger in the viewer.

P.S: For those keeping score, I'm off NaBloPoMo.


  1. The title makes the first paragraph redundant :(

  2. Yewww... what the hell is that? I hope, it tasted better than it look s/ed.
    Congrats on this, but since you have come this far, keep going..keep going! Learn some veggie dishes.

  3. Purreettttyy cool :D Used to cook a lot, previously, n recently resumed cooking. And started off with dal :O
    Need to learn the recipe for Hyderabadi Dum Biriyani, especially cos I reside in Hyd ;)

  4. Gosh!!! What IS that thing??!! :P lol

    Chalo, at least this way you can manaofy your future wife. :P :D

    Nice post. :)


  5. @Hari: The pics were gonna give it away anyway, so I wasn't trying to hide it.

    @Nag: You fake wannabe Hyderabadi! You can't even recognize a decent Biryani?!

    @Bindu: If you live in Hyd, you can always order it!

    @bondgal: What?! Am I surrounded by vegetarians here? Lol @ wife comment. Didn't think of that! And thanks. :)

  6. yum! and congrats! genuine biryani is hard to come by in my parts.

  7. Wow! congrats to you, you sure were able to make me envious of you that you can cook such mouth-watering dishes finally.
    Hi! Arslan, am missing your pencil drawings and sketches. Do put it up on your blog if u have sketched anything on your new locale.

  8. Hi Friend.. This is Vijay here.. Ur doing a good job.. Shall we exchange links...

  9. @Pankaj: Thanks. :) Yup, the genuine stuff is best found in Hyderabad..

    @Shas: Thanks Shas. I haven't put up the recent ones but I'll make some more and put them up. :)

    @Vijay: I think the 'follow' feature is good enough..


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