The conception of Golden Puddy

I claim that I don’t like presents, surprises, and special things. This is true. But once in a while I catch myself being pleased when someone decides to ignore my weirdness and do something nice for me anyway. Last night Komal planned a small Thai dinner to bid me Bon Voyage for the upcoming trip to India. Or may be she just wanted to use the can of coconut milk before it expired. Whichever. I’m not judging.

Komal is a very organized person. This means, no matter how small the gathering, it involves meticulous thinking, planning, menu making, and coming up with a fake name for our apartment to make it sound like an authentic restaurant.

My mouth instantly started watering when I read this email from her.

Thai Dinner Menu @ La Cucina CKL (Chika Komal Lilah)

Appetizers
Edamame
Carrot Ginger Soy Lettuce Wraps

Main Dishes
Red Curry with Tofu and mixed vegetables served with a side of rice
Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce

Dessert
?????

Drinks
Water
?????

As my contribution, I attempted to fill-in the “?????” under Dessert by making Mango Sticky Rice. Neel had the foresight to know that heavy substitution of ingredients and my “I think this is how it’s done” recipe wasn’t really going to work. He came prepared with Plan B: Haagen-Dazs’ Pineapple Coconut ice cream.

Jake, our trusty neighbor, decided to surprise us by not burning the kitchen and instead inventing a mango cocktail which he appropriately named A Golden Puddy* after his pet cockatiel, Puddy.


*Not the real Puddy, just a poser from the Internet.

The dinner was A FEAST. The sticky rice was stuck to the pan and inedible. The Plan B Ice Cream was delicious of course. And the Golden Puddies were kicking. I asked for the cocktail recipe and was told instead to pay $8 for it. And I almost did.

*A Golden Puddy: Crushed ice, frozen mango chunks, mango pulp or juice, a splash of orange juice, light rum, dark rum, coconut rum. Proportions unknown. Blend. And get ready to taste your to-be favorite summer drink.

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Chika Gujarathi is a freelance writer based in Raleigh, NC. She writes about everything from travel, food, books, and family. Her current project includes a series of children's books to teach Hindi. She is a native Tar Heel who has also lived in Washington DC and Chicago.

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