My coworker, Elpis and Justice, just got back from a trip from India, and she brought back some Indian candy to the office. I haven’t tasted that many Indian sweets – besides the rice pudding that’s standard in Indian restaurant lunch buffets. So I was really interested to try the confections Elpis brought back.
But I was a little taken a back when I saw that the entire candy was coated in edible silver. I’m generally not a fan of edible metals in desserts. Once I got a cupcake at the Red Velvet Cupcakery that was topped with a tiny piece of edible gold, and the slight metallic taste set my teeth on edge. On the other hand, after seeing photos of the Indian wedding Elpis attended, where beautifully beaded saris and jewels abounded, the silver coated candy didn’t seem all that out of place.
The candy was interesting – some of the pieces had almonds and spices, and they were wrapped in what looked like some kind of nut favored covering. It was much sweeter than American candy, which usually goes for flavor contrasts (like sweet and sour, or sweet and salty). But, in general, all I could taste was the metal.
But this made me think about how desserts differ from food culture to food culture, and also change over time. What’s the most interesting dessert you’ve from another country? Was there anything you loved that you didn’t expect to like? Anything that you hated?