Goa’s monsoon dish of ‘kalchi kodi’ trumps the State’s pork fest of ‘sorpotel’, ‘assado roast’ and ‘vindaloo’

The robustly flavored, virtually neon orange hued, recent coconut-based kalchi kodi is one which matures deliciously with time and is finest saved days after preparation

The robustly flavored, virtually neon orange hued, recent coconut-based kalchi kodi is one which matures deliciously with time and is finest saved days after preparation

I grew up in a family obsessive about any and all the pieces that percolated from the nice ‘Motherland of Goa’ to our barely attenuated bomaicar (Bombayite) Goan existence right here in Mumbai, Never thoughts dropping a good bit of heft alongside the brief, however telling journey.

Sure, my sister’s and my “native language” of Konkani was so rusty and diluted with phrases from the borrowed Marathi, that it was shortly relegated to the standing of a fourth language. After the extra sensible (as my much less sentimental mom put it!) in English, Marathi and Hindi. But my food- and music-loving father at all times made it abundantly clear that the 2 aforementioned facets of his model of goenkar-ness had been to not be trifled with.

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This meant that we youngsters had been launched to a complete phalanx of performing artists and musicians from a really early age. Be they fado and mando singers, or the moderately ribald humoured teatre (Konkani theater) artists. They all made their quotidian and unavoidable presence felt in our drawing room.

Pernickety about his meals to an virtually militant diploma, Dad made certain our Goan meals provides by no means ran dry. This meant common grocery replenishing journeys to Goa. For he had a lifelong mistrust of the native Goan specialty shops that dot locations like Crawford Market and Dhobi Talao in South Mumbai.

The journeys would entail stocking up on sur (palm vinegar), bundles of dried, salted fish, smoked choriso pork sausages, fats purple rice, sollas (dried mangosteen) and pyramid-shaped black jaggery blobs. Among a truckload of different goodies bought on the well-known meals market in North Goa’s Mapusa.

A woman selling dried fish at the market.

A girl promoting dried fish on the market. , Photo Credit: Getty Images

But there was at all times methodology and purpose to his obvious ‘hoarding insanity’. For you see, Goan delicacies is without doubt one of the most interesting examples of how preserved, pickled and even dishes cooked days upfront, far outnumber their freshly-made counterparts. Both when it comes to selection and above all, depth of flavour.

And on the pinnacle of those made-yesterday-savoured- tomorrow wonders — that embrace the triumvirate pork fest that’s the pickle-like sorpotelthe assado roast and the vinegar-imbued indian , vindaloo) — is the surprisingly humble and plebeian, totally vegan kalchi kodi, So well-liked is that this virtually neon orange-hued, recent coconut-based curry that it even has a ditty devoted to it. The 1969 track ‘Kalchi Kodi’ by one among Dad’s favourite singers, the legendary Alfred Roseis a paean to this dish that I’ve grown up each devouring… and sure, listening to with relish!

It was a latest report by BBC Science Focus speaking of how a stew or casserole tasted finest after just a few hours of being made and even the following day that put kalchi kodi on the forefront of my ideas. For the very which means of its title — kalchi kodi means yesterday’s curry in Konkani — says all of it.

Though it begins life as the ever present sorak , sure, the identical one identified pithily as “just Goan curry” — consuming kalchi kodi is an expertise to behold. The sorak also referred to as ankwar kodi (actually, “unmarried curry”) in some components of Goa, is mostly thought-about a monsoon dish.

This is as a result of we in any other case fish-obsessed Goans, basically, do not eat recent seafood within the months with out the letter ‘R’ in them — which occurs to be the monsoon season. Thus, the curry is commonly eaten with bhende (woman’s finger) or with a bit of dried fish both plain fried or within the type of a pickle just like the well-known mackerel parra,

But in my view, this tasty sorak reaches even larger heights of deliciousness the following day when alchemy bestows it with the title of kalchi kodi. Best when left in a single day (and even a few nights, if one can resist) to thicken in earthenware pots known as khundema mild simmer the following day atop a firewood-fuelled open flame is what seals the deal.

This is exactly why to today, my household at all times eats kalchi kodi for breakfast. We luxuriate in its thick, unctuous flavour, finest loved with sizzling brun paoor poie breads, or my private favourite, fats purple rice. Making it an entire breakfast meal is the addition of egg to it. This might take the type of a boiled egg submerged within the curry’s orange depths, or a fried one (in coconut oil) sitting jauntily atop it.

Critics typically lay it thick on us Goans, chiding us for our well-cultivated model of sussegado, Loosely outlined as that languorous way of thinking the place taking issues simple and leaving seemingly vital particulars to be handled the following day is sort of a ritual. Maybe a beneficiant serving of kalchi kodi will assist put all of it in perspective for them?

The Mumbai-based author and restaurant reviewer is captivated with meals, journey and luxurious, not essentially in that order.

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