I am preparing to fly back to India. So the past few days have been busy wherein I have to wind up a lot of work and also say good-bye to a lot of my friends. The good-bye process is never going to end for sure. I haven't seen half of my friends. But I have been spending a lot of time with my young friends at work. For my imminent departure, I was showered with gifts. Among the gifts I received, there was a can of preserved artichokes.
Now you may wonder my connection with artichokes. It started more than 10 years back when the non-decrepit cafeteria at the place I was consulting served me scampi with artichokes. It was the meticulous way in which the chef was cooking the scampi and then arranging it the plate that caught my attention. But when I started eating, it was artichoke that won my heart. Probably, it was because the artichoke was pickled and tasted sometimes sweet and sometime salt. Basically, it was unpredictable.
Anyway, I continue my love affair with artichokes. Today, I don't think twice if I see an entree with artichoke in it. Similarly, I scan the menu at the pizzeria to find a dish which has artichoke in it. A lot of my friends smile at my choice. Now, I realize they are also observant. Otherwise, the can of preserved artichokes would not have found it's way into the carefully selected gifts.
Now that brings us to the French lesson. It was not the bratty young friends but my beautiful young friend who gave me this lesson. Coeur d'artichaut. It translates to heart of artichoke. Although I have not seen a real artichoke except the one served on a plate, I will not be able to explain to you what the heart of an artichoke looks like. For the French, it means a naive person!
Disclaimer: Just because I love artichokes, it does not mean I am naive.