Soooo…This year we’ve got this chapter in English bout the last days of this poet from Kashmir…and how he kept his spirits up to the last moment.
The author was a good friend of the poet and described the guy as always having a beautiful carnival of celebration around him….he was always a candle that would leave his warmth even after being put out.
Many times in the story, he mentioned Rogan josh, a traditional meat dish from Kashmir that both the author and the poet cherished. Their talk of the delectable aroma that would waft out as soon as you get to the front door obviously got our mouths watering.
So so so….
We had Rogan josh.
With Friday evening spent in bed, studying for the math exam waiting at the end of the weekend, it was only fitting that I got a change to rejuvenate with some good company and great food, so off the family went to the one of the neighborhood Indian restaurants.
It was only with the menu in place on the table and the sight of the word Rogan losh that I really remembered the poet and the story of his death. Nothing to be lost in trying an age old classic dish that I m bound to love, right?
And so after a long siblings tussle regarding the food choices, and a much shorter wait at the table, the food arrived in all its glory.
My first thought was that of surprise: the mental image of the green colored meat was immediately shattered at the sight of the red- brown heap of curry that arrived. I was in for an even bigger surprise: it tasted nothing like id expected.
( I will admit here that I went into this with the belief that I obviously know what mutton Rogan josh is and have tried it innumerable number of times before….. well the second part turned out to be true although I cant say the same for the first bit)
This would be around the time some context about the dish is given, but owing to the fact that making things brief is not my specialty, ill just quote Wikipedia:
Rogan josh, also written roghan josh or roghan ghosht, is an aromatic curried meat dish of Persian or Kashmiri origin. It is made with red meat, traditionally lamb or goat. It is colored and flavored primarily by alkanet flower or root and Kashmiri chilies. It is one of the signature recipes of Kashmiri cuisine.
Well, it definitely was a great curry, just what you’d expect from the rich cuisine of north India…..but is it worth all the hubbub?
Well, there are a few things to consider here: one, the place I ate from wasn’t really the best at the art of Kashmiri food, and two, the sense of nostalgia that the poet attaches to it can never be felt by the likes of us right now, since frankly, we don’t really care about such things yet.
But on that note, yeah, it was pretty great, and funnily, kept getting better after every bite. It effectively fills tour mouth with the flavor, and leaves a lingering evidence that makes the next bite even better.
I don’t really enjoy meat, but this was a game-changer.
But, yes, I do believe that it was lacking something, although my best guess is, the missing element was a Kashmiri chef.
But yeah, to end things off:
have you ever had Rogan josh? what did you think about it?
Lemme know somewhere down there 🙂