Thursday, 23 July 2015

Festival Food

SM Stirling, The Peshawar Lancers (New York, 2003), p. 349.

I tried to post late last night but the laptop did not cooperate. Another food-based post - Athelstane's band, visiting a manor holding a polo tournament, is served festival food in covered brass bowls:

tandoor-baked chicken (see image);
fragrant basmati rice;
nargisi koftas (lamb meatballs around hard boiled eggs);
fiery sauces;
the meats and sauces scooped up with balls of rice or chapatis.

For the sake of completeness and by contrast with all this rich food, it might make sense to describe a feast conducted by our villain, Count Vladimir Obromovich Ignatieff, but I have not got the stomach for that.

If there are any more laptop problems, there might be another delay in posting but I trust that the blog by now has plenty of material for rereading? Onward and upward.  

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I can certainly see why you don't want to describe what the worshipers of Satan in THE PESHAWAR LANCERS would consider haute cuisine! FAR too revolting for decent persons to contemplate!

But we can find descriptions of Count Ignatieff eating decent food as well. This what you can find him eating on page 22 of PESHAWAR, during an undercover visit to Oxford (India): "He ordered barra kebabs on saffron rice--saffron was a cash crop here, less of a luxury than in most places, and Kashmiri rice was famous, and a squat flask of indifferent local red wine."

Since so much of the cuisine we see in PESHAWAR is basically tropical, it made me think of where you can find similar descriptions of warm weather food in the works of Poul Anderson. The example I thought of being Unan Besar, the planet we see in THE PLAGUE OF MASTERS. Here's a tiny bit from Chapter IX: "A rijstaffel, properly made, is a noble dish requiring a couple of hours to eat. Then there was sherbet, with more tea and arrack."