Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Mulberry Tales...

Unlike the lazy bum Reeta Skeeter is now, she was found to be quite active as a child. *Sigh*
You know, the kinds who would go for a swim for four hours at a stretch... The kinds who'd absolutely loathe the afternoon siesta...
In the afternoons she would be out playing tennis against the wall or gathering Mulberries that fell from the tree if she was playing on the clay court...
*Playing Jaane Kahan gaye wo din... Ok Ok no more drama now*
Yes, that was what triggered this Childhood flashback: Mulberries.

For, I had them after long the other day.
The sweet, tangy, juicy fruit of the red Mulberry dissolves itself at the touch of the tongue, and unleashes a flavour that has a charm not worthy of words. It can only be tasted. It is known to the Hindi, Arabic speaking population as Shahtoot (Shah=King, Toot=Mulberry) or King's Mulberry and is available in Delhi in two varieties, namely White Mulberry and Red Mulberry.
The Red one is deep red and has a tinge of purple. However, I fail to understand why the White Mulberry is called so, as it starts from being pale yellow in colour and ripens to acquire a soothing green coloured skin. Red, is my favourite as it has a naughty tangy flavour. And it leaves red stains, if you drop it somwhere. The green one (or white or whatever you may call it) oozes sweetness and is a pleasure for those with a sweet tooth.
Oh yeah, there is a Mulberry Tea available too! More about it when I lay my hands on it ;)

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

It ain't Greek to the superstar plate smasher *Greeksta*: Skeetah

So much for Greek Pizzas.
Skeets now hops forward to her bewitching new find: It's Greek to me.

Here is how it happened: A asked Skeets if she could have some wine. Skeety's non-muggle instincts told her that this place MUST have wine. So, there they were headed. Minutes later, they entered a cosy little restaurant which was dressed (read decorated) in such a manner that it could easily pass as some tavern besides a farm at some highway in Greece.

Comes next what? The living end of CONFUSION. The 'placing of the order' time.

Skeets is known for her habit of reading the menu only for such a little while that the person accompanying her (if any) may be provoked enough to stab her with the butter knife kept in front of them. Gee.

Dodging the knife, Skeets ordered the Mezze Platter to be shared with A and a glass each of red wine.

The Mezze Platter tasted as promising as it looked. It bore: Tirokafteri fritters (a stuff of feta and spinach mix), Spanokopita (pita bread with some dressing), Falafel (fritters made of fava beans/chickpeas), Dolmathes (sort of steamed dumplings made of rice and pine nut filling, wrapped with grape leaves). These were accompanied with small helpings of Tratziki, Hummus, Eggplant dips and a few breads. The Dolmathes did not go well with Skeety or A's tastebuds. Rest, all were classics.

Then came, the most intriguing bit. The Plate Smashing. It is a Greek tradition to smash the plates after meals. They smash plates at taverns where the females perform Hassapiko (Greek dance form) and the likes. So, Skeets asked at the restaurant if she will be given a plate to smash. They said YES. And so, Skeets unleashed her wikkid side and smashed the plate in the Smashing corner and walked away to glory after having had a smashing time. Another visit is pending. SOON.

Please note: Falafel is not Greek but a street food snack popular in many countries, especially the Middle East, and Hummus dip is again popular in the Middle East countries...
Skeets hasn't had Greek food before. So, Skeets was more than glad to incorporate some suggestions in this post, with a vision to familiarise us Delhiites with Greece and its cuisine.Fellow blogger thalassa_mikra threw some light upon Greek cuisine and traditions:Tirokafteri - is a traditional Greek Dip made from Spiced Feta Cheese...Spanakopita is spinach pie - spinach and cheese filling inside layers of filo dough...
So what was served to Skeets was more of a namesake of Greek food.
Another blogger Hellenic says: The plates are not smashed after a meal. Usually the plate smashing (and it's a tradition on it's way out in most of Greece), takes place during a solo dance performance when plates are smashed in joy at the performance. Also, plates are not smashed in the restaurants in Greece. It is no more permitted and it takes place in Bouzoukia (night clubs). Today in Greece, people enjoy the same, but only throw Flowers.

(Location: B-6/4, Commercial Complex, Safdarjung Enclave, Opposite Deer Park, New Delhi, 110029)

P.S.: Deepak (Bigger, better Delhi Foodie) swears by their breads and I stand by him and NOD in acceptance.