Monday, 11 June 2007

Going For An English

One of my earliest memories of laughing my head off at a TV food sketch was when the incomparable Sanjeev Bhaskar, Kulvinder Ghir, Meera Syal and Nina Wadia "went out for an English" in Bombay. Looking at this clip from the BBC series Goodness Gracious Me again after all these years, it's lost none of its biting edge as a brilliantly funny parody of typical Friday night racism in Indian restaurants.

But even "tanked up on lassis", I'd have difficulty swallowing this story in The Times (that's The Times of London, btw, not The Times of India). The unbelievable breaking news is that the voice of the BBC Food Channel and author of the bestselling book Brit Spice, Manju Malhi, is to present a 40-episode cookery series on British food for India’s largest commercial television channel, NDTV. Mrs Malhi hopes to improve the dire reputation of British cuisine in India by teaching viewers how to prepare classic English dishes with local ingredients. Her inventions include spaghetti bolognese (made with soya mince), shepherd's pie (made with lean lamb mince and the exotic vegetable "potato"), bangers and mash (with chicken sausages), roast chicken (with black pepper and chilli spice) and mango crumble dessert. Presumably, subsequent episodes will feature "extra bland scampi" and "gammon with crap on the side".

The only shame is that all this has come too late to be an entry for Fish & Quips. If this isn't an outstanding case of life imitating art, I really don't know what is.


Anonymous said...

Hello - I am going to add your blog to my favorites list - I am in a 10 month certificate program to be an apprentice chef. Yours looks much more demanding! I appreciate your insight & comments.

ros said...

I remember that clip! I used to love that show, even though some of it was way too close to home for me!

Reading through that list of dishes has got me wondering what the hell we did in Britain (and in Europe in general) before we had the potato!

Richard said...

Will Mrs Malhi have recipes for 'the blandest thing on the menu'?!

Jeanne said...

Oh that's too funny!! Maybe she can also do a programme on making our national dish of chicken tikka masala - talk about exotic British food!!

Chennette said...

I love that show. So funny. Relevant on many levels in Trinidad too!

dan said...

Thanks Trig. Never fails to amuse.

Gary S. Hurd said...

Thanks for mentioning these great comedy sketches. I had never seen them here in the US.

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