Diary of Hobbitt

Monday, April 28, 2008

Tears For the Crocodile

" Watch & Learn" programmes have become rather popular with viewers today , what with even food habits having gone global ! This has created a rush among all the channels to include a cookery show as part of their programmes. BBC has even come out a channel solely devoted to the art of cooking , known as BBC Food .

While most Indian channels show a variety of veg as well as non-veg dishes prepared by master chefs like Sanjeev Kapoor, Tarla Dalal , Mallika Badrinath , to name a few , BBC Food channel has shows devoted to mostly non veg cuisine with a sprinkling of veg cuisine-( not that anything is wrong with that of course ). Being interested in anything that concerns food ( even though personally I am a die-hard vegetarian ! ) , when time permits (yes, surprising as it may seem to some folks, even we housewives are hard pressed for time ! ) I watch programmes based on cuisine delights- veg or non-veg - Indian cookery shows , to learn new veg recipes & BBC Food channel out of sheer curiosity (its unbelievable -what all creations are dished out in the name of food ! ) . My offspring thinks I am weird ! She is simply at a loss to understand how a pucca shakahari ( veggie- to those unfamiliar with this term ! ) like me can sit in front of the TV and watch with rapt attention and fascination all those unfamiliar non-veg dishes being prepared , without feeling queasy most of the time !

To make a long story short , one summer evening , I switched on BBC Food channel to see the host of the show introducing a master chef of a famous restaurant in Johannesburg. Curiosity kindled to the peak I waited to see what was in store for the next half hour . I was not disappointed in the least- the recipe of the day was Crocodile steaks ! Visions of the carcass of the poor creature being displayed to viewers drifted in my imagination as I waited with baited breath ! Of course no such thing happened - instead the chef took out a rectangular piece of flesh ( "fresh and succulent " were the terms he used to describe it - sounded quite ghastly to me . ). He laid it flat on a chopping board and proceeded to literally "hammer " it (with a metal kitchen hammer ) - " to make it flat and even " as he put it. Next he spread honey and butter on the meat and over this arranged chopped pineapple pieces , red chillies, salt , & pepper ! With all the ingredients in place he made a roll and straight it went into the grill . After a while , Voila, the steaks were ready -,brown & crisp and ready to be served ! He then arranged the steak on a plate keeping a boiled egg on top , batter-dipped -fried prawns on one side , parsely , spring onions,& baby-carrots on the other side, "to add a dash of colour " as he put it . Inviting the host to taste it he offered the steak - " mmmm....... this does taste delicious " commented the host taking a bite - no doubt he must be saying that for every dish that he tastes on this show !

As for me - my stomach lurched over and I shed tears for the crocodile - heartfelt tears and not CROCODILE TEARS !


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