The flavour of Kolkata

The flavour of Kolkata
The city is known for its old alleys. One such is shot by Atanu Pal.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Food Kahini hits the bookstores

"Ritu-da (Rituparno Ghosh) used to call her by the name of a food"

"Shut up!"

Mir was going to spill the beans about the name as food was the theme of the conversation with the guests at the book launch and actor Sudiptaa Chakraborty tried to dissuade him in vain. Well, the pet name that Rituparno gave her in their very first meeting was ‘Gutke kochuri’ (A small version of kochuri or kachauri). Let’s be a bit fair to Sudiptaa and not get into what actually prompted him in giving that name.

It was the evening of the launch of Food Kahini, the food book that turned well-known Kolkata food blogger Indrajit Lahiri into author. And it happened in style. The starry April evening at Peerless Inn had composer-singer-lyricist Anupam Roy, actor Aparajita Auddy and singer Lagnajita Chakraborty apart from Sudiptaa as guests and as the cherry on the cake, Mir was the host. Mir, incidentally, plays the ‘Bhaipo’ (Nephew) in the food-based web series ‘Foodka’ with Indrajit in the titular role of the uncle who is a knowledgeable foodie. It is into its third season (Available on YouTube).

Anupam sharing about his weakness for sweets

Mir had already asked Anupam about his foodie side and shared with us his deep love for sweets. He also asked the famous composer in jest what all he keeps in his fridge since his romantic songs often have names of vegetables (Like dry spring onion). It was followed by Aparajita who confessed her obsession for khichudi (Khichdi). She shared a childhood incident, with an annual occurance, where her parents used to find her sitting on the road, right by an open drain, without a care, just to eat the ‘bhog’ (Prasad) along with many others, served in a local puja. The banter, peppered with Mir's wisecracks, made for a fun time.

Aparajita talks of her obsession for khichudi with her trademark laughter

When it was Lagnajita’s turn at the end, she offered a private story on Anupam’s sweet connection where the venue was her home. Though she kept on insisting that it was harmless, it was enough to embarrass Anupam, albeit in good spirit.

Lagnajita spilling the beans

Coming to the book, it’s every blogger’s secret dream have a book to his/ her name and Indrajit was no exception. Though his blog Moha Mushkil is primarily in English, it has a section of Bengali posts and I’ve often told this friend of mine to write more in Bengali since it’s the language that befits his humorous and free-flowing writing style. Good that Food Kahini is in Bengali and comprises of his writings on various segments of foods that Kolkata is collectively known for all over the world- from the Chinese breakfast of Tiretta Bazar to the famous born-in-Kolkata kati roll to momos. In different chapters, it talks of the food at Chinatown, the brunch at 'Office para' or Dalhousie area- the central business district, the heritage cabins of the city and a foodwalk at Burrabazar which is more known as one of Asia’s largest trading hubs. It has many other attractions in the other chapters and goes beyond Kolkata to other districts of Bengal. Needless to say, it promises to be a fun read.

And Food Kahini is born. Author Indrajit Lahiri is third from right.

#FoodKahini #KolkataFoodGuide

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