Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Paapdi Chaat

For those of you who know what this is, skip straight to the section which says "More". Of course, at home, if I say "More", I usually get a tumbler full of white milky thingy which is enough to keep your tummy like a water tanker for the rest of the session. In any other context, it would be a "Butter-milk" that is known as "more" in Tamil.

Paapdi chat is a tea-time snack, which is prepared by mini chips, topped with mashed potatoes, like the cream in a cream-biscuit, except that it is not sandwiched on the open side. Now, 6 such open flakes are placed in a plate before being lavishly covered by a sheet of the sour "more". If you cannot comprehend that phrase, please read the last phrase as Yoghurt/Curd. This is then sprayed with a variety of garnishing, which generally only looks in different colors, but adds the same taste. What next? Eat till the last drop of Yoghurt is finished.

Coming to the TRUE MORE. If you can say what is more in this thread on the snack, here is what. We from India have a host of people who are true to their locale. i.e., people who like to eat things that they want. For example, you can imagine what kind of people would eat a Pumpkin or a drumstick or even for that matter, eggs. But when it comes to snack, the art of customizing the food is also something where you can earn a masters. Some also managed to get the doctors. This is really a six-sigma precision game and hence, you will need to experiment this for a good long time on yourself. And you still carry a chance of flopping your own experiments, because TATA salt is more salty than Annapurna is.

Artists first have to carefully calculate that around 3.90 ml of the Sweet is to be accompanied if the curd is 2 days old. If you been having a phobia about diabetes, you can instead add 0.25 ml of Green chilli sauce extra. This is by rule additional to what has already been added. Then you get the garnishing and or topping. Sometimes, you can even add onions and tomatoes, which the Vendor can buy, chop and serve you if you are his good acquaintance. Once the customization is done, you start eating with multiple other dumb customers, who dont have this art, stare at you in disgust about wasting their only time.

But this art is not like paintings or embroidery where the art, whether good or messed, is permanent. The only way around in paintings or embroidery it is either by changing the canvas or not change at all, although embroidery can sometimes invite a lot of flak and sometimes even the (National Commission for Women) NCW taking out a procession embroidered in silk better than you could, in an attempt to TEACH you a lesson or two.

People do have the uncanny knack of rectifying their assessments and go back to defaults many times during their session at the plate, and then, by careful calculation, tend to re-assess the situation and finally, get the LAST spoon to suite their taste. But they would've reached a saturation point by then due to eating 3 additional plates in the process of default-custom-default-custom moves. And finally, the bill.

Vendor: "Fifteen rupees Sir ..." with a moment of calculation pause (15x1 has got to be 15).

Artist: "Just three days ago I saw your board and thought you are cheap at twelve. I came here today and you already have hiked the price"

Vendor: "The neighboring vendor said that you are coming, hence this"

Artist: "What do you mean?" (Confused and proud at the same time).

Vendor: "I meant, you were the sole citizen who voted for the current Government from our lane, hence you are responsible for the price hike.... "

Artist: "@!#@#$!@$" (Although silently assuming it is his art that was being praised)...

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