Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Now that's what I call Hot Chocolate!

So my friends, my long, pan Indian quest for the perfect cup of Hot Chocolate saw a bright silver (or should I say, a sparkling brown) lining in the tantalizingly near horizon in... oohh, just an hour ago! Thank you, thank you for the applause, but I really owe it to the likes of Nigella Lawson, Kylie Kwong, the dudes hosting Highway On My Plate, Man Vs. Food, Take Home Chef, Hell's Kitchen, and Top Chef. If not for their having me go green with jealousy at their ability to get their hands on food exactly the way they imagine it should be, I would probably have remained just a hungry street rat, scavenging for food in just about any food joint without really being sure of where I can safely give an order, assured of a worthy eating experience!

Much to my mother's annoyance I have been increasingly eating out for(ever or, in other words) a couple of years now. Hunting for the best paranthas, the best coffee, the most scrumptious breads and cakes, the most sinful desserts, the most delectable quick bites, are just the beginning of what I know is going to be my life-long hobby. Since it fulfils my urge to loiter on the streets and discover new places even within familiar grounds, it is like a total package of recreation!

Being a big fan of the cold coffees, my interest in learning about the brews of all related varieties of beverages started about two years ago, when my daily wanderings became largely a one-woman affair with an unfamiliar city. As visits to cafes big and small increased, and the dining time elongated, they kept me 'informed' through the snippets in their menu cards. Sometimes, in smaller places, I'd chat up with the chai-wala uncle to know what goes into his cup of tea, coffee, or whatever it was that he was going to give me.

Soon it was quite clear that in most places, the brews were not half as exciting on the tongue as they appeared on paper. In the normal course of things, one should have taken the signal and started spending more time in one's own kitchen (like my mom would rather have me be), or looked out for something else to do, rather than punish your stomach with more of the same stuff. But punish is exactly what I did continue to do, as my interest became a hobby, and went till the brink of becoming an obsession barely kept in tethers by an anxious mother, a spartan sister, and several friends with varying degrees of patience towards this idiosyncrasy.

On the up side, well, what more, I chanced upon a fine cup of Hot Chocolate after months of hard labour, trial and error, and a bit of clever (even if I say so myself) investigation! So at the precise moment when I took a swig of the thick, sweet and dark brown, cup of Hot Choc tonight, I relished it with no less than the jubilance of Columbus!


  1. Hey fellow-foodie, aren't you a pure vegetarian? If oui, how on earth do you manage to watch those amazing food shows that feature meat, meat and more meat?!

    Or maybe you aren't like those other oh-gross-another-episode-of-meat-vegetarians?

  2. See dear Drumster, I dunno about the "pure" part of being a veg-eater. I love my chocolates n cakes that contain the seductive fluffiness of eggs- whites, yolk n all. I relish food shows that feature meat as much as vegetarian content, though I don't necessarily eat what I watch.
    There are things that are more gross and scandalizing and torturous than grilling fish and marinating chicken for lunch. I wish people woke up to those infinitely more important things in life.. :) Let food be a thing of joy for everyone. So I'm up for a collaborative virtual food fest with you! :) :) Where do we begin?

  3. Oh goodie...just don't let Khushboo read this then (winks). I'm climbing aboard this virtual food fest. How rad are we! :)