If we should call a ‘spade’ a ‘spade’, then there should be no shock to call ‘Pui Shak’ – Pui Shak. Sure to quench the thirst of the curious minds, I am talking about Basella alba which is also known under various common names, including Malabar Spinach, vine spinach, red vine spinach, climbing spinach, creeping spinach, buffalo spinach and Ceylon spinach among others. However, given this is also a leafy vegetable making frequent appearances in the lunch and dinner menu in Bengali households that the true honour will be to call it by the name it is called at home – Pui Shak!
Mark my words when I say that the future will not only be bright but also will be bright red. This is because red is the most auspicious colour in the Chinese culture and with the Chinese New year just round the corner, this is high time to turn up the heat and turn red with some succulent Sichuan style prawn and chowmein.
“Man, it’s a hot one
Like seven inches from the midday sun
Well, I hear you whisper and the words melt everyone
But you stay so cool
And if you said, “This life ain’t good enough.”
I would give my world to lift you up
I could change my life to better suit your mood
Because you’re so smooth” (Santana, Smooth)
Sundays are cheat days when you are exempt from counting calories but instead granted to count the beans in the kidney bean dish you will prepare for dinner.
What is left after the guests have left? What is left after the family and friends had enjoyed the sumptuous Christmas meal you invited them to? While you lick your fingers and reflect, why not turn on the radio to listen to the Cranberries when they sang “Linger (1993)”….
The only tragic tune that never gets heard during the festive loud merry making during Christmas dining is the fact that the protagonist of the Christmas main dish – the turkey – had been a sad victim of lost identity.
The present tense doesn’t need to be a tense one if you could eat a present. Confused? That was the objective actually – to ask you how would you feel if you could eat a present and move into future with a happy tummy? This Christmas you can try to find out which of the presents you will receive are edible, which are wearable and which are merely for personal or home use. Why not gift a loved one the joy of receiving a gift which could actually be eaten too?