|a slice of ilona's carrot cake|
i have always loved carrots. the pakistani carrot is terracotta orange. i would often eat them raw when mama or my dadi would slice rounds to add to a mixed vegetable bhujia. when i was six i discovered gajar ka murabba, a candy sweet condiment of thin carrot batons gently simmered in a simple syrup infused with whole green cardamoms. the sugar would permeate the membranes and make the carrots limp. this condiment is preserved in a memory as the flavour of a carrot caramel. i helped myself to one too many and felt quite poorly afterward. perhaps this is what explains their absence in my life after that brief encounter in my phoopi’s kitchen.