As we get through life,we soak in the world around us in all its senses -the visuals,the touch, sound,taste and smell.Food is perhaps then, the greatest metaphor. It is both ritualistic and exotic, sensual and nourishing. And one of the greatest levelers.
My story comes from these metaphors and influences -the Moroccan part is not from my own travels there,but my boyfriend’s -the Indian part is my own.Some years back, as a 24year old, my boyfriend spent 2years living in and exploring Morocco. Around the same time, I was exploring the MiddleEast, having grown up over there,now rediscovering it. As it was,we happened to board the same Emirates flight from Delhi,heading in different directions,unknown to each other.With a layover in Qatar,we ended up going out for an Indian meal together(as we soon had discovered, we both were part of AIESEC).My boyfriend,then living in Morocco,craved for good ol Indian food every now &again (you can take a boy out of Delhi, but..),convinced me thus to share a nice Indian meal in Qatar with him (Morocco having very few Indian restaurants and Qatar having plenty). After the meal,we headed for paan. It would’ve been something out of Before Midnight,except this was the age of Facebook &mutual connections. We headed our own ways then,only to come together late -but thats another story 🙂 Once I got to my destination, Kuwait,I headed straight to the spice market,thinking of the boy with the black hair who had made me laugh and told me tales of Marrakech. I bought some Moroccan spice blend, because of course I wanted to experience this strange place through its food, and because I wanted to make the meal stranger still, I added some paan leaves to it on a whim. I invited my friends over, and we shared a meal that brought together India, Morocco and Kuwait together in a strange blend of tastes and textures and stories. And now, every time I cook this hybrid dish thats sweet and sour, tart and salty, I think of how similar cooking & love are.