What would you cook if you lost your sense of smell?

Imagine what it would be like to lose your sense of smell…

I’ve been doing that a lot lately.

No, I haven’t started going randomly morbid, I’ve been reading my
book club [www.thekitchenreader.wordpress.com/] book for March.

“Season to Taste: How I Lost My Sense of Smell and Found My Way”
by Molly Birnbaum
[chosen by www.katherinemartinelli.com]

In a nutshell, it’s about a girl who was planning to become a chef. Then a few months before she was due to start culinary school, was hit by a car and lost her sense of smell.

As you can imagine, this has a massive impact on her life, causing a change in career path. But the thing I found most interesting was how she struggled to get back into cooking.

I’m a big believer in the ability of seasoning to elevate a dish from so-so to delicious. So it was interesting to have this confirmed by Birnbaum’s story.

I asked my Irishman last night what he would cook if he lost his sense of smell?

Straight away he said, ‘something really smelly with an interesting texture’. Like tripe.

My answer was something colourful and familiar so I could imagine the flavour from my memory. Something like one of my favourite curries, butter chickpeas.

And I think I’d overcome the ‘season to taste’ dilemma by serving salt and pepper on the table for everyone to help themselves.

butter chickpeas
serves 2 with rice or cauliflower rice

2 tablespoons garam marsala
1 – 2 teaspoons dried chilli flakes
1 can chickpeas (400g / 14oz), drained
1 can tomatoes (400g / 14oz)
2 – 3 tablespoons cream

1. Heat a few tablespoons olive oil in a saucepan. Cook garam marsala and chilli over a medium high heat for about 30 seconds.

2. Add drained chickpeas and cook for another minute or so.

3. Add tomatoes and their juices and bring to a fast simmer.

4. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring every now and then and breaking up the tomato with a fork.

5. When the sauce has reduced a little stir in the cream. Taste and season – or not.

carnivore – swap chickpeas for chicken, pork or beef.

– replace cream with coconut cream or extra virgin olive oil.

Jules x

ps. I’m going to be opening the doors to the Stonesoup Virtual Cookery School again SOON!

To be the first notified when doors open AND be eligible for the waiting-list-only DISCOUNT…

Join the waiting list over here:

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