#Opinion

Viral Photo: What’s Wrong With Idli On Ice Cream Stick?

Idli on ice cream stick
Idli on ice cream stick: Food innovations have a sure shot potential to disrupt peace on social media. All it takes is a mischief-maker to put some chocolate sauce on biryani or make Maggie kheer and all hell breaks loose. This time though the outrage is beyond me. What’s the problem with putting idlis on ice cream sticks?

A viral photo of a plate of idlis, with the food item mounted on ice cream sticks, has gone viral on social media. The image was also shared by businessman Anand Mahindra. “Bengaluru, India’s innovation capital can’t stop its creativity from manifesting itself in the most unexpected areas… Idli on a stick—sambhar & chutney as dips…Those in favour, those against??” he tweeted.

Twitter is divided over whether this innovation is actually useful or completely useless. Even Member of Parliament Shashi Tharoor couldn’t resist commenting on the viral photo. “Absurd but practical,” he tweeted. According to one Twitter user, idli on a stick is an abomination and needs to be banned immediately, while food blogger and author Nandita Iyer tweeted that she’d take this innovation any day over the cheese-loaded nonsense. “It’s also rather practical.”

Not a culinary expert, but I agree with Iyer, this is a simple innovation which at least doesn’t alter the basic dish and merely provides an alternative way to consume the dish. Have we forgotten the horror of Fanta omelette which repulsed the guts of even the most non-fussy eaters known to mankind?

The quest for instant fame via viral videos often leads food vendors and influencers to cook up dishes that don’t even belong in our garbage cans. I have watched millions of horrifying videos of street vendors adding disturbing quantities of cheese and butter to a single plate of pav bhaji, dosa or vegetable sandwich because there is an overenthusiastic Instagrammer pointing a camera at their sizzling tawa. There is no dish known to human beings, to which cheese hasn’t been added by bloggers and cooks. Maggie can be transformed into a sweet dish, pizza is being served in kulhads, chai comes to you straight from tandoor and don’t even get me started on what moms are being subjected to. Some of these innovations do work- as proved by tandoori chai. But others don’t go beyond the shock value they generate.

Keeping all this in mind the idli on ice cream stick innovation is quite harmless. The world could have done without it, yes, but idli could have been subjected to worse fate, than simply being made to look like a vanilla ice cream bar. Let us all just keep calm and count our blessings.

Views expressed are the author’s own.


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