An ethnic food festival is a chance to savor flavors one might never be able to enjoy again, and so I always try and visit when I get the chance. The Annam National Food & Agro Biodiversity Festival held a couple of weeks ago at the Rajendra Maidan proved to be a big hit with the Cochin public. Apart from the food court in Rajendra Maidan, a short distance away were stalls selling organic fruits and vegetables and forest produce like honey; information counters; demonstrations of agricultural techniques; etc.
I had my most memorable lunch of 2015 at the Annam food court. The main course was a simple vegetarian meal, with organically grown rice as the centerpiece, served by an outfit from Shimoga in neighboring Karnataka specializing in organic farming and organic food. The rice was brown rice (unmilled rice), the healthiest rice, that was organically grown. It had an indescribable, unique flavor. And the meal was served in a plant-based plate.
The Malayalee's staple rice accompaniment is fish. There was a stall that offered fresh fish fry, whose aroma I found irresistible.
The result was my best meal of 2015. And there was the moral satisfaction that it wasn't a sinfully unhealthy repast, dripping with fat and oil. Quite the contrary. I washed down the lunch with hot chili juice. It was the first time I was having this, and even as I sipped the juice, I could feel its soothing fingers at work in my stomach. It was a delightful drink! The photo below shows the brains behind the Sidvi organic rice bowl, Eashwaran Theerta, and his family at the chili juice stall. He told me they have an organic produce outlet in Tripunithura.
Slow food from Shimoga, until next year then. You will come, won't you?
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