I have always been a big chicken eater. Probably because in the days of college poverty, it seemed like a waste of money to eat anything vegetarian outside the confines of the vegetarian Gujju mess (sic). But the last couple of years have been quite different. I can’t eat more than a piece of chicken in one go. And the smaller it is, the better! The only reason I have stuck with ordering chicken is what comes with it. Like the curry in butter chicken, the fries and sauces in a sizzler, the cheese in cordon bleu, the rice and raita in chicken biryani. Gone are the days when I wanted to live in a house made of kebabs. Lamb is absolutely out, mutton is not easily available, pork and beef are out because I am now nothing if not a woman of habit. I don’t particularly enjoy river fish, what I really like is the potato and mustard curry it is made in. On the other hand, I have fantasies that involve paneer, palak, lettuce, coriander, daals, gobhi, parwal, cheese, and dessert. Who would have thought! The only thing that had been keeping me from turning vegetarian was prawn (yes, my world of sea food now ends with prawn – another recent development). So earlier today, when I was wondering why they couldn’t stuff cheese with chicken in my cordon bleu, instead of the other way round, I realized that it is time I gave up the pretense that has become my non vegetarianism. I am going to stick with prawn and vegetables as far as I can. Considering I have no religious reasons to do this, no curry is beyond reach, no rice “impure”. And when it comes to survival, absolutely nothing is beyond reach. I am going to stop being a fraud non vegetarian, and I will be prawnatarian instead. Or fraud vegetarian. You decide.
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