Last week, two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning humourist Gene Weingarten found himself in hot curry when he wrote an article despising various cuisines that included ‘Indian food’ because –wait for it — all Indian cuisine is, supposedly, cooked with just the one spice: curry. Now there’s an illiterate statement if you ever saw one, which took The Washington Post more than a little while to correct.
Weingarten’s article was clearly meant to be facetious — after all it is a humour column. But humour works best when a joke has some basis in truth, or fact. And this is where he failed spectacularly. Because while no one cares whether he likes Indian food or not, his claim that all Indian food is cooked with ‘curry’ shows a fundamental lack of understanding of Indian cuisine in particular, and the concept of spice in general. After all, to proclaim that curry is a spice is tantamount to saying ..