Thursday, November 17, 2005

Turnip Love

I woke up at 5am today, feeling awful. Agha Katebi came by, as promised, to take Ali around (It was an invite for us both but I was just too beat to do anything but take lots of medicine and sleep). They walked around our neighborhood and he showed Ali our grocery store, introduced him to the owner so they know him and know he’s a guest of Mofid and don’t rip him off because he’s a cute nice clueless white guy. He also took him to the neighborhood breadmaker, the noonwallah.

Agha Katebi is so generous and thoughtful. He bought me a kilo of turnips because from what he said, turnips or “shalgham” are very good for colds and flus. He instructed Ali to have me quarter them and boil them, and breathe in the steam as they cook.

Kudos to my Alijooon, for having the mental energy and fortitude to actually wake up and get ready and walk around doing all that stuff. I couldn’t even imagine being conscious, let alone showered and ready to be social.

Later on, Agha Katebi came again and took Ali to the Holy Shrine. Again, I was asleep. (Just remember, Sara=sick with flu.)
Ali said it was great, but he’ll tell you all about that. He did say there were lots of pilgrims, so it would be likely that I would find Pakistani spices in some of the stalls in that bazaar.

Tonight, we made a quick jaunt to our “super market”. Cute term. It’s more like a room, 8ft by 12ft, but it sure packs a wallop in terms of goods. We got some apples, this hoagie/sub roll type bread (4 6-inch rolls in one packet), eggs, salt and pepper, mayonnaise (which they even have in huge vats here), yogurt, rice, a few tomatoes, a few potatoes, garlic and milk. Incidentally, the hoagie/sub roll type bread, referred to as Fantasy Bread or “Noon-e-Fantazi” isn’t all that fantastic.

We also got Iran’s famous chelo kabab at a restaurant here. Chelo kabab is basically ground up spiced meat (beef or lamb) grilled on a skewer served on a bed of rice. I’ve had a Paki version of this (seekh kabab) and it’s absolutely fabulous. We were in for a huge shock when we realized it was awful.

First off, it was lamb meat. I thought I actually like lamb/mutton, because we eat it in my culture and I like all the stuff my mom makes with it. However, this was awful. The meat was smelly and too “flavorful”, and there wasn’t enough spice to cover up the smell of meat. (It’s a South Asian trick, spice the crap out of the meat with garlic, ginger, chili powder, turmeric, salt, etc., until you can’t really taste the meat part of it anymore.)

I had a bite and a half or so. And some of the rice. Bobali was braver and managed to finish all of his kabob. He felt quite ill though.

So we still haven’t eaten too much. Thank goodness they gave us some bread, jam, cream and the cheese. We’ve been using those for all of our meals/snacks, so far. The only problem is they’re not very substantial over several days. I LOVE the unsweetened cream, but it’s 30g of fat in half of a little container. I’m not sure how that will work out. I’m hungry and know I won’t be much of a cook so that will help us both lose weight, but I’ll be supplementing my diet with loads and loads of cream.

Ironically, food was the last thing we expected to be a problem. We’ve both had Iranian food before and it’s pretty awesome, so we thought, no problem, at least we won’t starve.


Blogger huma said...

use the ww tricks -- lots of veggies, you can go ahead and dip them in cheese (fondue?)

2:02 AM  

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