I love spicy food, and a hot curry (at least, the Americanized versions I usually encounter) tends to fit the bill quite nicely.
But there was that one time in 2001, at Minar Palace, back when it was a narrow little spot on Chestnut Street in Philadelphia. I’d ordered Chicken Vindaloo, and was happily munching away while at a table full of friends and family.
And then, suddenly, I noticed the view in front of me receding, as if I were suddenly whooshing backwards at a fantastic speed. Swirling patches dotted my peripheral vision, and I heard a clearly-audible “SNAP” emanate from somewhere between the back of my throat and the top of my head. I remember trying to speak the word “hot”, but all that came out was a high-pitched and unintelligible hiss from somewhere deep, dark, and forbidden within: “Haaaaaaaugh…. haaaaaaaugh… haaaaaaaugh…….”
When I’d finally managed to spit out the offending seed, and mash enough dry bread into my mouth to quell the rebellion, I made a mental note to swear off foods that ended in guttural sounds like “oooo” and “gaaaaagh” and “nugget”.
And yet, inspiration lingers. For from the same traditions comes a spice with a variety of medicinal uses: turmeric.
Yes, turmeric, the yellow spice that’s normally a staple of curries and French’s Yellow Mustard, has some rather fantastic qualities.
The taste is slightly bitter, which pairs well with a robust, smokey coffee. But in truth, this works best with just hot water (though if you’re looking for a caffeine boost you can pair this with something like a green or black tea.)
- Add all ingredients to a blender or small, tightly-sealable water bottle
- Close lid securely, and shake/blend for 45-60 seconds (a little longer with water/tea than coffee.)
- Open carefully, pour into a mug and enjoy!