Sep 13, 2012

Yeh anda ki baat hai

I presume at some point in history, boiling an egg was an art - a minor, teensy-weensy one, but art nevertheless. Some people, the talented ones, intuitively knew exactly how long to keep it on the fire. The less talented ones had hit-and-miss days - you never knew what they would produce. The Gorans and Marats among the egg-boilers would produce a beautiful, soft yet firm, egg one day and on others, just hurl the egg at the referee and walk out. (At which point, the turbaned commentator would say: "you can't make omelettes without breaking any eggs".)

But today, in the time of timers and gas controls, egg boiling is science. Follow an algorithm, turn the heat on some H20 for 3/6/9 minutes, and almost everyone can be a yolk-star. I expect the problem went from art to science not in a series of DARPA-funded experiments that varied time, heat, and water, resulting in many post-doctoral positions, but via the obscure processes through which cultural wisdom develops over the ages.

Three cheers for cultural wisdom - which gave us much of what we love to eat (in the pre-molecular gastronomy days).

ok, this month, I actually, really, effectively learnt how to boil an egg with consistent results. Call it my Anda Andy Murray moment.


Harish said...

I remember an ad from the early 1960's of America where someone (GE?) advertised for an automatic timer for boiling an egg and the ad was talking to the ideal housewife who *needs* to get it just about right for the husband returning from work. And if she didn't manage to do that, it would be a failure on her part.
Don't remember if it was a Perry Mason book or a Hitchcock movie, but I also remember a reference to a housewife trying to time the boiling with the husband honking his car at the signal close to the home - start the stove at that moment so that when he reaches home, it is perfectly boiled. (Now I wonder if this was also part of the same ad but I do have the Perry Mason/Hitchcock reference in mind wrt this)

Ramanand said...

So you are saying how times have changed. How the husband now has to figure out how to boil the egg himself because the wife is returning from office soon :)

Harish said...

The 'good old days' :-)

Hirak said...

Please share the wife-pleaser Anda Algorithm!

daemon said...

anda-man - the prisoner!