Recently there was an interesting news item. The British retail chain Marks & Spencer is planning to sell curry in
The word curry is said to have evolved from kari in Tamil. In Malayalam also the same name is used. It means different types of culinary products in different parts of the world. But basically curry is a side dish or secondary dish eaten with rice. It could be made with meat, sea food, eggs or vegetables, the common factor being spices.
During the Raj, the British became enamored with curry and rice and took it to their country where it gained great popularity. Whether the sahibs got on to the curry habit from the Anglo Indians (AI) or vice versa is not clear. Without doubt, the AI cuisine is excellent.
The best AI chicken curry I tasted was in
My hostel friend Eric Perriera had insisted that I should visit his parents. His father was a civilian officer in the Defense Department at the capital. Eric’s mother gave me a lunch of chicken curry and rice. It was superb. I lost touch with this good friend of mine. Some one told me later that he had migrated to
Mulligatawny soup, as far as I know, is an AI adaptation of the South Indian rasam (sometimes wrongly called ‘pepper water’). It is normally served hot. But when The Taj (Bombay) opened Tanjore Reastaurant in the 1970s they used to serve chilled rasam as appetizer. It used to be excellent.
To conclude, here is a Raj story I read somewhere. A sahib traveling by train was having lunch at a railway station restaurant. As he was relishing the chicken curry and rice, the train left. On realizing that the passenger was still at lunch, the upset station master rushed to him and said, ‘Not to worry sahib, take your time. I’ll call the train back.” He did.
Ah, the Raj days!
Also see: Bangalore memories