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The whole experience is free priceless.
In 2007, when residents reported noxious fumes in London’s Soho neighborhood, city officials, police & firefighters feared the worst – a terrorist chemical attack. They smashed down the door of a small storefront to discover the culprit: a pot of nam prik pao, the renowned chili paste of Thai cuisine.
I can relate. When I make curry, the rarefied air of the 21st floor where I live contains more than just aroma, but a visible ocher haze. Simply by breathing one is exposed to hazardous levels of piquant longing. My husband & I smell like curry. Actually, we reek of curry. Even after showers. A small price to pay.
When I first met my fabulous friend, Sunita, it was this very aroma of Indian-spiced curry permeating our floor from under her door that sparked a foodie friendship between us. For me, few things mint a new friendship like curry.
She feared she was annoying the neighbors. I feared she wouldn’t share the source with the rest of us. (Her husband, Prem, is not only a holder of dozens of patents, but also a serious cook of Indian food both arresting & delicious. I’m glad he’s on the planet.)
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Couldn't resist including my favorite picture of Sunita as mother of the bride. (Can you see why I call her "Daaahling" – in the tradition of Zsa Zsa Gabor?)
Indian buffets: The most festive way to nosh. (For as much as I love to cook, I love even more when cooking is unnecessary, & all I have to do is eat.)
Then there’s the fire-breathing Thai-licious & Caribbean curry vapors wafting up my sidewalk from the street food beyond. Who could resist their salty-fruity-spicy-sour-tart-sweet siren song?
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How to prioritize my curry escapades often prompts existential reflection for me. Giddy on so much gastronomic luck, if I ever went missing, the headline would read: “Last Seen Eating Curry on 16th Street in Denver.”
Obviously, they deal in curry.
As a bonus, curry is good for our health because of the liberal dose of turmeric – the anti-inflammatory superstar – it proffers.
And I’d be remiss not to mention both the metabolic boost and endorphin & dopamine-spiked sense of wellbeing that comes from the antioxidant capsaicin in the requisite chili peppers of every good curry.
Now I know the world is divided into those who “heat” & those who don’t, but for those who do there’s nothing like the fiery bliss & euphoric glow that follows.
To expose ourselves to different cultures & brand new flavors (& lots of joy) we don’t have to travel to far-flung destinations, we only need the driving force of burning (har har) culinary curiosity. And if we stay curious, the world is a generous teacher.
So, if by chance you’ve yet to experience the warm-you-from-the-insideness of Crazy Sexy Curry, please do. I’d be willing to bet it’ll be love at first dip for you too.
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It's Happy in Here (TM) (Series) | How to Be Happy: 22 Tips to Everyday Bliss by Cindy O'Krepki Published by Words That Live On, LLC © 2012-2014 All Rights Reserved.
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