February 23, 2018

Fazil Iskander and Food

Georgian feast

Photo by DDohler

If you like good food writing I have a treat for you. I was up late last night re-reading Sandro from Chegem by Fazil Iskander, one of my all-time favorite writers, when I came across this delightful description of an Abkhazian feast:

Gibbous turkeys lay in rich brown nut sauce, roast chickens presented their bare rumps with a certain appetizing indecency. Vases bloomed with fruit, candy, cookies, pastries. Split pomegranates, as if cracked by inner fire,opened a glimpse of their sinful caverns crammed with precious stones.

Beds of salad greens glistened as if they had just been rained on. Young lambs, cooked in milk in the ancient Abkhazian manner, mildly evoked a lost innocence, while the roast suckling pigs, by contrast, clenched the crimson radishes in their bared teeth with a sort of devilish glee.

-From Belshazzar’s Feasts in Sandro of Chegem

Check out the original in Russian (hit Control+F and search for индюшки to get to the paragraphs I quoted).

Getting myself invited to a dinner in Abkhazia is definitely on my bucket list!


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