The cook was an Indian, engaged by the hospitable al-Kafs to make British travellers feel at home with their own familiar dishes : he had been brought to Tarim with the news of my coming, and I realised what a responsibility we undertook when, together with our Empire, we allowed things like anchovy sauce and tapioca puddings to run uncontrolled over the continents of the world. If Dupleix had triumphed and Clive had failed, one might be eating delicious omlettes in Africa and Asia to-day. And if missionaries allowed more goodness to overflow from prayers into cookery classes, it might, in the long run, be better for the salvation of the average man, who, as any wife can tell, is frequently inclined to sin by indigestion and very rarely rescued from it by piety.
© 2012 Kate Griffin. All rights reserved.