The name 'Dosa Wrap' in the menu left me wondering what the item would exactly be. But what the waiter pronounced it as was the perfect name cum description of the hybrid dish. Interestingly, that was just the first of the series of raped (the english one :P) dishes that I have come across recently in one of the lesser known areas of western India. These poor items seem to be nothing but the victims of some sort of forced penetration of one cooking style into the menu of another. I have hereby compiled a list of 5 such preparations which I call the 'बलात्कारी Menu'.
1. Dosa Wrap (Dhosa Rape)
This consists of a plain dosa conveniently used as a wrap. The filling consists of every cheap vegetable available in the market in the season stir fried with a bit of salt and some sauces giving it a Chinese like flavor. A few peanuts may be added to confuse your taste buds further.
2. Plain or सादा Dosa (सडा Dosa)
To kill the taste of even the empirical form of Dosa requires a special level of innovation. And the one leading to the vibrant colors of Tutti Frutti sprinkled on your Dosa definitely deserve nothing but a standing ovation. And if you still had any plans of sitting down again and subjecting your tongue to this torture, the jaggery mixed sweet 'sambar look alike' would ensure that you realize the pain early and quit the task.
3. Sev Idly (Save Idly)
It shouts aloud but no matter how much you try, its really difficult to save the 'izaat' and 'aabroo' of Idly after the brutal assault of green chutney, tomato sauce, chat masala, salt, grated onion and sev on it. To hide the crime and ensure that the victim Idly is absolutely unrecognizable, it is often slaughtered into 4 small pieces.
4. Dum Aloo ( Dump Aloo)
What could ever possibly go wrong with something as plain and simple as Dum Aloo? And even if something goes wrong, it can never be made inedible, right? wrong! You just made the mistake of underestimating the talent that chefs in this part of the country possess. In a 3 star hotel of one of the biggest cities of this region, you would be served a sheer jewel of a Dum Aloo. With Tutti Frutti once again making a guest appearance in the bowl, you would be served with the extremely complex task of figuring out the ingredients of a sweet tasting filling inside your 'aloo'. A garnish of dry fruits would make sure that this order becomes unforgettable for you.
5. Egg Kheema (Egg ki Maa)
The better known Egg (Anda) Bhurjee first lost its name and then its face. The red color rightly signified the death of a dish and egg had never seemed as non-vegetarian to me as it did on that particular day. The other culprits were not regognizable but I could catch tomato sauce red handed. The accompanying pav made me suspect the presence of pav bhaji masala too but I am not really sure about that. I tried my level best to chaff out the remains of the egg from the bush of grated onion and tomato, but it was an impossible task.
What I have listed above are just the major incidents that have scarred me for life. There were also many small incidents where vulnerable dishes like Pani Puri and various other chat items have been molested. The fingerprints of sev and sugar make them the prime suspects in most such cases. With that, I leave you warned about the dangers of being a food loving traveler.