Friday, May 14, 2010

Food for the stomach and mind

Am I little embarrassed by my food obsession? I am. But not too much. An Italian friend of mine worked for a while with a travel agency in Boston which arranged guide tours of Italy. She the most common question that she would get is: what will we eat? It can cut both ways. I have known Americans who must travel with their Oreo cookies (and not just to single out Americans, Gujarati's - my people - are known to travel with their own snacks, dry chutneys, and if they can afford it their own chef) and those who are more excited about the food they will eat than what they will see.

For me Naples has been mostly about work (sadly, but the Flugelbindery is paying the bills) and meeting friends (much happier -- and the nice thing is that this a small town in the end - you meet people everywhere - crossing the street, in cafe, walking home late at night...). But I can't deny a thrill when I go to the local cremeria and see little balls of mozzarella floating lazily like fat fish in a tank. And I won't deny the thrill of seeing a cheese platter when I'm invited to dinner.

But for me also food for the mind (less fattening, you know?). Below a picture from Rita McBride's latest exhibition in Naples. Can you guess what the shapes are?

The neon versions were constructed by an aged neon master in Naples who I had the chance to meet.

Though I haven't read them before, Rita McBride is famous for her "faux" novels. Her first was a faux museum catalog / romance. She has also done faux science fiction. Very cool woman.


howler said...

i think i'd od on mozzarella, burrata, tomatoes, pizza before surfacing to look around ...

story for you: i first tasted mozzarella in 1991, and the argentines who took me out in nyc wanted to know what the savage indian thought of it. reminds me of a fancy paneer, i said. loud howls of laughter.

turns out - and this deserves to be true even if its not - that the water buffalo in naples came originally from india. and of course, thats the milk we drink all over india - buffalo milk, not cows.

i claim a moral victory.

Bombay Beauty said...

Right you are howlerji. No one seems clear on the history, but it is very likely that the water buffaloes are Asian immigrants to Southern Italy. I was just telling someone today that mozzarella seems like the cheese it should be easiest to mass market in India because of its similarity to paneer.... bb

If Jane said...

oh and oh!! looks and must taste gorgeous!

Anonymous said...

So I'll try paneer very soon!

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