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Monday, October 29, 2012

Elemental, dear Watson

Sad, sad enlightened fruit


At the top of many pages in the Earth Water Fire Air cookbook appears an item on a suggested reading list. Here’s the first thing on it: TRIPURA RAHASYA (THE MYSTERY BEYONG THE TRINITY) by Sri Munagala S. Venkataramaiah.

If you think that was the biggest mouthful this book will serve up, you’re wrong. The actual recipes require some heavy-duty chewing. This suggested reading graces a page featuring an “Exotic Green Walnut Salad.” It consists of walnuts, grape juice, and shallots.

The illustrations won’t lighten your mood any either — they’re as cheerful as the one on the cover, only in black and white. The whole fruits and vegetables they portray are bruised, pockmarked, imperfect specimens which sit there in the half light resigned to their fate. They will be eaten soon.

Far out, man.

Earth Air Fire Water, Barbara Friedlander, Collier Books, 1972

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