One of my Mother’s friends who used to stay below our flat used to prepare this dessert in Eid. I couldn’t recollect it’s name and I had a very faint recollection of it’s taste. The last I had had it was probably back in 1993-94.
I used to love that and sheer korma. And she’d prepare it with so much love and give it to me. 2 decades on I still had a faint recollection of it’s taste. And I kid you not, when I asked Shagufta, my very good friend from TCS, if she knew there existed such a dish and bam came the reply “Haan Zarda kehte hain usse”. And I almost jumped off the chair when she said she could prepare it and get it for me when we meet up.
So there I was sitting in the mall on a fine December forenoon waiting for her. And quite frankly I’d forgotten about the dessert. And a few minutes into the chat she took it out and gave it to me. I first looked at it, looked at her, and then ate it and… was transported to “20 years ago”. Bliss in it’s purest form. Just pure bliss.
I shall not be able to translate what it felt like to have that dish after so long, especially since I am a foodie with a major sweet tooth. And Zarda was and will stay as one of my favorite desserts for life. But it was something like an old piece of memory that was fading and yet sticking on, and had been quietly frantic about finding some source of recollection. That faint piece of memory wayyy back in your memory, when it comes rushing out onto the front of your mind full of anticipation, and the anticipation gets satiated.. that’s what it is like.
Thanks Shagufta Khan for that wonderful preparation. Not everyone is willing to do a little bit for the sake of a smile or just the good sense of fulfilling someone’s request. And it was a simple request which you took up. I had waited all these years in the hope of stumbling upon a spoonful of it. And you helped me with a box full of it. God bless you. You’ve made a dear wish come true! 🙂