An afternoon of food and literature
At NOSHtrekker, we are all about storytelling. Our experiences enable our Hosts to share the stories of their countries, neighbourhoods and lives with visitors through a combination of food, ambience and narrative.
This month we put a unique spin on “storytelling” and served up real flavours from a fictional story to a group of literary enthusiasts. Instead of your typical book reading and author Q&A, we presented a literary event with a twist – NOSHtrekker served the dishes mentioned in the book over lunch.
The flavours of Rain Tree
The book featured during this event was Rain Tree, a novel by Singapore author Mahita Vas. The book tells the story of Ani, a young woman who navigates life in pre-Independence Singapore and who must choose between her education and her baby. The tale addresses the cultural and political conflicts of the day, and also introduces readers to the sights, sounds and tastes of the Singapore of yesteryear.
During lunch, participants had the opportunity to discuss the place of each dish in the novel and share knowledge of culinary methods used by old-time cooks. The result was a multi-sensory experience that made Rain Tree come to life in more vivid detail in the minds of the audience. No longer did they have to imagine the corn soup or nasi lemak served within the pages, or recall the tastes of lamb biryani and laksa being eaten by the characters, they could taste the authentic flavours for themselves.
NOSHtrekker thanks Mahita for taking the time to talk to our audience about the inspiration for her novel, and engaging participants in a discussion on related topics like unique cultural practices, the role of race in Singapore and the journey of a Singapore author in today’s global literary market..