This recipe is a part of a series of recipes that I will be posting as an accompaniment to my newly launched podcast, Not Just Dhansak. On the podcast I chat to friends, fellow Bawas and Parsi entrepreneurs about all things bhonu and the recipes in these series are a result of the chats I have with them on the show. Check out the podcast here.
“The traditional Parsi cannot comprehend the idea of the salad which is not completely encased in Mayonnaise. If there’s no mayonnaise, it’s not a salad. ”
On the very first episode of my newly launched podcast, I spoke to archaeologist and food historian, Kurush Dalal. Many of you who read this blog may know him as the man behind Katy’s Kitchen and also the author of Eats, Feeds & Digs.
If it is Parsi food history you are after, Kurush is the person to speak to. And since, I wanted to start off my podcast talking about what Parsi food really is , he was the first person I reached out to. Luckily he agreed to come on the show and we had a gala time talking about the evolution of the cuisine and all the slightly ‘batty bawas’ we have come across in our time catering to the community.
Whenever I think of Kurush, the one dish that comes to my mind almost immediately is his Chicken & Pineapple “Salad”. My very first conversation him ever was when I was organising the catering for my engagement party. Back then I had just returned from New Zealand and since we were going for a ‘continental’ menu anyways, I suggested to Kurush that we would also like a salad.
There was a long silent pause after I said this. After that, Kurush said, “Ok sure, we will do something”.While I wanted to know what exactly he had planned, he refused to tell me and it was on my engagement party that I first had his Chicken and Pineapple ‘Salad’.
I say “salad” and I giggle because for most Parsis, if said salad has any speck of green and is not completely encased in mayonnaise then it is not a salad. Ofcourse, I hadn’t learned this back when I got engaged and it was lucky that Kurush served this because had he put up something green and leafy, my marriage plans may just have come to an abrupt end right there and then.
Consisting of chicken, home-made mayonnaise, pineapple and cheese, you could say that the only ‘salad’ component here is that it is served inside a pineapple. But, boy is it tasty! The added bonus is that you can still log it in your food log as a salad and your dietician need never know.
You can check out the full recipe for it below ofcourse but I’d also urge you to head to whatever app you use for your podcasts and also check out my brand new show, Not Just Dhansak. Alternatively, you can listen to it online here.