Another fusirrito

… as in fusion burrito. Oh, stuff it! In a burrito, in a burrito.

From my 4/28/18 posting “Another portmanrito”:

Into a world that already has the Whopperrito, the Sushirrito, and the turkerito there now bursts the Protein Bar-rito (from the Protein Bar & Kitchen). Where will this end?

Well, you can have fusion food without a portmanteau name. The Whopperrito is a Burger King fusirrito, the Sushirrito a Japanese fusirrito, the turkerito a Thanksgiving fusirrito, and the Protein Bar-rito an organic / natural fusirrito. Then there’s a desi fusirrito, the tikka masala burrito available at a number of  Bay Area restaurants, including two with outposts in Palo Alto.

Zareen’s in Palo Alto: 365 California Ave. (also in Mountain View)

Curry Up Now in Palo Alto (downtown): 321 Hamilton Ave. (also in San Francisco, San Mateo, San Jose, Alameda, and Oakland)

(#1) The Curry Up Now logo

(#2) Chicken tikka masala burrito from Curry Up Now (available with or, as here, without rice)

On the dish, a monument of culinary syncretism. As (southern Italian) pizza has become a pan-American food, so (desi) chicken tikka masala has become a pan-British food. From Wikipedia:

Chicken tikka masala is a dish of chunks of roasted marinated chicken (chicken tikka) in a spiced curry sauce. The sauce is usually creamy and orange-coloured. There are multiple claims to its place of origin, including the Punjab region of the Indian subcontinent or Glasgow in Scotland. It is among the United Kingdom’s most popular dishes, leading a government minister, Robin Cook, to claim in 2001 that it was “a true British national dish”.

Chicken tikka masala is chicken tikka, chunks of chicken marinated in spices and yogurt, that is then baked in a tandoor oven, and served in a masala (spice mixture) sauce. A tomato and coriander sauce is common, but no recipe for chicken tikka masala is standard; a survey found that of 48 different recipes, the only common ingredient was chicken. The sauce usually includes tomatoes (frequently as purée), cream, coconut cream and spices. The sauce and chicken pieces may be coloured orange using foodstuffs such as turmeric, paprika, tomato purée or with food dye.

And on the ethnonym desi, from Wikipedia:

Desi is a loose term for the people, cultures, and products of the Indian subcontinent or South Asia and their diaspora, derived from the … Sanskrit देश (deśá), meaning Land or Country. [Though] “desi” is a loose term, … it is often accepted that Bangladesh, India and Pakistan are desi countries.

… Desi contrasts with … vilāyati (Anglicised as “Blighty”), which originally referred only to Britain (during the British rule vilāyat, an Arabic-origin word meaning ‘state’, signified Britain) but may also refer more generally to anything that is European or Western. People from the subcontinent living in vilāyat (Britain) or in other Western countries refer to themselves and their ethnic culture as desi. The desi/vilāyati pair of antonyms is widely used in subcontinent languages (Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi, etc.).


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