“Why don’t you judge for yourselves what is right?
So, I was having a leisurely lunch at an Eastern Indian restaurant. Cell phone on the table enabling a conversation, I sat alone sampling a variety of comforting and odd Indian foods- basmati rice, naan, daal, paneer and curry. During one of our cryptic, hurried conversations I questioned the host about the deserts and which ones had cardamom or coconut. He was young, mid twenties with caramel colored skin and long black hair that shagged above deep, smiling eyes. He liked that I tried all the offerings on the buffet line and if his gesturing was any indication, he liked that I asked questions, too. He said there was no coconut or cardamom in any of the six pudding-ish deserts or in the entrees he showed me.
Pshawing what he had told me I took a spoonful of each dessert; 6 little mounds of color on a stark white plate. Four of these desserts were pudding and fruit mixes- nothing all that interesting. But one was a warm carrot pudding; nuts, cinnamon, raisins, carrots, and cardamom! In fact they all had cardamom. I soon discovered that my conversation with the Indian man was not as I thought it had been…there was cardamom in every dessert he had shown to me! But my failed listening skills bought me on a culinary adventure so how upset could I get with myself? The final dessert looked like pieces of baked squash, liberally peppered with black pepper.
I hesitated for a moment when I thought to sample this one, but it was just for a moment and I tasted it… oh my! It exploded over my tongue with golden warm cardamomy flavor! And here I was thinking it was plain old acorn squash! I couldn’t have been more wrong. And so it goes, another case of judging a book by its cover, will I ever learn?