The Magic of Kati Roll

27 Sep

Tanizaki epitomizes his definition of magical food in the scene where the Count “dreams food”. In his dreams the cooked shellfish dominates every part of his mind such that he can only talk about the soft look of the molluscs, the delectable smell of clam hotspot, the feeling of the warm steam rising from the shell, and the taste that makes him “[lick] the four walls of the oral cavity” (Tanizaki, The Gourmet Club). The food is described metaphorically and in such detail as if it has taken over the Count entirely; that is magical food.

New York City is known for the city that never sleeps, it’s crazy cab drivers, and, most importantly—to me—it’s small, unique food restaurants. In Greenwich Village, there is a place called Kati Roll that makes the most amazing Indian style burritos. In these paratha (Indian tortilla) wrapped burritos, they fill the inside with your choice of Indian shaak—mixed vegetables, paneer cheese, meat etc. I typically get the inside filled with potatoes and peas mixed with spices and Indian chutneys (sauces). Though this recipe seems so simple, the taste of the Kati Roll makes the taste buds jump and the salivary glands salivate as the server hands you your order. The chutneys and spices emit a strong ethnic aroma that makes me feel like I’m receiving a home cooked meal in India. When you get the Kati Roll the warmth makes you want to delve right into it, but the sometimes sizzling of the shaak reminds you that you’ll burn your tongue. The kati roll tastes so magical, you almost forget that there are so many more unique food places in New York.


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