Euro Gida: an ode (with jaggedly-inserted Bernhard pastiche)

4 Feb

let me tell you about a little place called Euro Gida. it has changed my life. walk north on brunnen str. a few blocks, past the architecture school with the ornate brick gate, past the overpriced, poorly stocked supermarkets, the supermarkets that are, in fact, mediocre. this mediocrity at first is bearable, actually remains bearable as long as one can overlook the permeation of this mediocrity into every aspect of one’s life. mediocrity, of course, is bearable when its permeation into every aspect of one’s life appears normal and, often, it does seem normal to us. and in these supermarkets the air is thick with mediocrity, it very nearly causes one to choke, so unbreathable the air is in these mediocre supermarkets, by which i mean all supermarkets. the air thick with mediocrity spills out onto the streets every time the doors open, which in fact is much of the time, as people constantly walk in and out, sometimes holding the doors open much longer than necessary, a sight which causes panic in me as i walk by and feel the thick of air mediocrity emanating from the supermarket. you know, too, that this air is everywhere, and my fixating on the mediocre air of the supermarket is a kind of overreaction to a particular locale of mediocrity, when actually mediocrity is everywhere and is impossible to escape.

see the Volkspark Humboldthain on your left, and then the mall on your right. cross the street and keep going a block. there it is, from a distance like any other vegetable stand up the block. nearer, you can see in a bit and might start to feel intrigued. walking through the door, the immense wonder of Euro Gida opens before you.

rows of vegetables in great quantity and high quality, and cheap! men wearing smocks bustle, stocking shelfs, weighing your vegetables and printing price stickers for them. along the wall, shelves of turkish breads and even giant bags of tortillas for not-too-incredibly-exorbitant prices. in the back butchers chop up all kinds of meat and offer trays of delicious kofta for a couple bucks. to the right is any kind of tea you could want, as long as you like turkish tea. me, i’d love to get one of those electric çaydanlıks so i can drink the stuff all day, like i did back in istanbul. i should tell you about that sometime. but then there’s also all sorts of grain–bulgur, cous cous, rice; cans of foul, salty cheeses, and and and. it’s too exciting to even talk about the whole thing.

then you walk back carrying too many groceries, get home and start chopping vegetables for salsa. the next day, fry up a pan of kofta and hot peppers, searing some tomatoes in the last minute or two before dropping it all in your tortilla smeared with yogurt and hummus. make coffee with cardamom seeds in a cezve for your friends. it doesn’t get much better than this. thank you, Euro Gida. you have made me a happy man.

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4 Responses to “Euro Gida: an ode (with jaggedly-inserted Bernhard pastiche)”

  1. Amanda February 6, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

    i want to try coffee with cardamom seeds!

    • ianmdm February 6, 2011 at 6:34 pm #

      it’s fun and easy! you just need a cezve, cardamom pods, and very finely ground coffee. or, like, go to any middle eastern restaurant and order coffee and chances are it’ll be prepared with cardamom.

  2. Allison March 19, 2011 at 3:47 am #

    Soooo great. If I get a job and make some money, I will try and visit you! That food sounds so friggin delicious!

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