Monday, November 13, 2017

THE IDIOT'S PLACE IN THE UNIVERSE

At what point does a dish become part of a national cuisine? The question is somewhat important, because among other things quiche is such a California thing -- and totally wonderful, by the way, we make the very best quiches here, they're terrific, except for broccoli, which only health freaks, mean people, and baboons should eat -- as is sushi, but both of them are different in their countries of origin. The last time I ate Quiche Lorraine it was made by a German American with an English name.
He's forgiven the French for being assholes.
His quiche was delicious.

Recently I mentioned that I thoroughly enjoyed fixing pork curry noodles for dinner. Which I thought was unique to a small area of San Francisco (my apartment), but apparently it's totally derivative. Even the chilipaste is derivative. Because Indians invented curry, and no one else did.


Okayyyyy ......


Chilies have long gone native in India, but they are originally from Central America. Cloves and nutmeg came from the Moluccas, which we Dutch conquered specifically so that we could establish a monopoly; they're ours. Black pepper was planted all over north-central Sumatra during the colonial period. Garlic grows nearly all over the world, ginger and galangal have been used by white people since Roman times, cumin and coriander seed both have Mediterranean origins, and most good Indians wouldn't touch pork with a ten-foot barge pole because that's something only untouchables eat.
Noodles, especially of the kind that I use, are Chinese.
Fermented dried fish is all of East Asia.
Lemon grass, galangal?
Malay.


The standard "curry powder" commercially sold in the white folks aisle has a composition that more closely resembles something Malay or Sumatran-coastal in origin, and outside of India as many people eat "curry" as in its alleged native land. The English, by the way, understand something else under the rubric "curry" than the rest of the world. Balti? What the heck is that? Madras beef curry? Chicken vindaloo? Spam in coconut milk?

Husseini kabab? Not curry! But very "curry house".


The person who told me that my dinner was, more or less, an imperialist construct, was white. And he was upset that I committed such blatant cultural appropriation. It sucked, man, really sucked. Horrible!

He was drinking coffee when he said all this.


Bami goreng (fried meaty noodles) are practically Indonesia's national dish, a side of saté (grilled skewered meat with peanut sauce) goes great with it.
Noodles were introduced to Indonesia by the Chinese, saté is derived from a Middle Eastern model, and peanut sauce, though entirely native to the Indonesian brain, would be impossible without the African goober.
Both bami and saté are also very much Dutch.
And did I mention chilies?

Apropos of nothing, groundnut chop is totally East-African, despite its close resemblance to Indonesian preparations, Trinidadian chicken rotis are just as "Indian" as Indiana Jones, and Jamaican goat curry would probably either frighten or appall Hindus and Musulmanis alike.
It is absolutely and totally delicious.
Great with bottled beer.
Pilsener.


Moronic white folks from Marin should be kept from opening their mouths. Because they don't know jack, and are likely to say stupid things.
They don't need coffee either.


Pork curry noodles are part of my native cuisine.
They represent my cultural heritage.
No debate allowed.


Damned anti-Dutch dingleberries.




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