"I, Hassan Haji, was born, the second son of six children, above my grandfather's restaurant on the Napean Sea Road in what was then called West Bombay, two decades before the great city was renamed Mumbai. I suspect my destiny was written from the very start, for my first sensation of life was the smell of machli ka salan, a spicy fish curry, rising through the floorboards to the cot in my parents' room above the restaurant." — The Hundred-Foot Journey
Like a lot of cooks I know, I love a good read— and not just cookbooks and food memoirs either. Yet it is rare for me to find on a food-themed novel that I enjoy. Truth is, most of them are predictable and clichéd, the food theme either forced or too obvious in its metaphor. So when a friend recommended a new food-focused (and Anthony Bourdain-lauded) novel called The Hundred-Foot Journey, I was skeptical.
But not for long. More