What did our ancestors eat? How did chaat become ubiquitous? And, how colonialism misappropriated curry? To know the answers to these questions, tune into podcasts that dive deep into the intersections of food while encompassing history, politics and mythology, topped off with personal anecdotes, recipe ideas and cookbook recommendations.
Naan Curry with Sadaf and Archit
Almost 3000 years ago, Indians pioneered candy making, says chef Sadaf Hussain in the episode The Desi Candy Crush in the podcast Naan Curry. Co-host Archit Puri, an economics and behavioural science researcher, highlights how refined sugar, through government policies, became a household essential. It is information like this that holds the listener’s attention for almost an hour. The podcast Naan Curry was released last year and early episodes were divided into topics like laddoo, chai and kebabs, deep diving into their history, politics and modern iterations. But two months ago they started to invite guests such as Krish Ashok, Manu Pillai and writers like Devdutt Patnaik to create enriching narratives on Indian food.
Listen on: IVM Podcasts
If you are hungry, don’t listen to this podcast. Its hosts, James Beard Award-winning author Samin Nosrat and musician Hrishikesh Hirway, have a way of describing their quarantine cooking that’ll whet your appetite. The 15-episode podcast started last year and ended in January. The freewheeling conversation between the hosts, peppered with belly laughs, includes food ideas, recipes and book suggestions. They have listeners hooked with questions like, what’s a sexy dish to impress a date. Nosrat’s way of explaining food will make your mouth water and her book recommendations will make you fill your Amazon cart. Tune into episode 15 and hear Nosrat’s experience of cooking from an Indonesian cookbook Coconut & Sambal by Lara Lee. It’ll remind you of home.
Listen on: Homecooking.show
Two journalists, Cynthia Graber and Nicola Twilley, started the Gastropod in 2014 to explore food through history and science. Ever since, they release a podcast either fortnightly or monthly to tap into current trends such as the rise of water sommeliers and use of edible cannabis. The best podcasts often break the monotony for the listener by inserting songs and film dialogues, and Gastropod has cracked this formula. Their episode, The Curry Chronicles, starts with the song Vindaloo by Fat Les. It’s one of the most engaging conversations about how curry was appropriated by the British who colonised India.
Listen on: Gastropod.com