Once upon a time, I vowed to go to India to eat my way across the country. I wanted to meet distant relatives, street sellers, cooks and chefs and charm them into giving me their recipes and their stories. I wanted to find out where and how the spices I cook with every day, grow and how Indian food and dishes change with the changing geography and culture across the map.
And so, here I am, right at the start and in Delhi – the heart of all organised chaos. I have a wooden spoon in one hand and a pen in the other and I am navigating my way across the city, jumping over the fires in the street, weaving through auto rickshaws, wandering through the spice markets and trying to clear the never ending mist in this city to unearth the edible gems.
I will be travelling for three months in total. The plan is not yet set, the trains are not yet booked and I have no idea what the next three months have in store. I have come here with my boyfriend, Hugh, a map, some malaria tablets and a little black book of my mother’s contacts – which include a famous ballet dancer, a good doctor (of course) and a a small hoard of relatives in Gujarat.
Everything I write over the next few months will be a collection of what we find, food we eat and people we meet when eating our way around the country.