CHENNAI (India) • Usha Prabakaran was at home, talking on the phone with a college friend, when she stopped making sense. Her speech scrambled. Her vision blurred. She dropped the receiver and fell to the floor.
It was 1998, and Prabakaran, a former lawyer living in Chennai, a major city on India's south-eastern coast, had just slogged through a decade of research and recipe testing for her comprehensive, single-subject cookbook, Usha's Pickle Digest. A party was scheduled for the following week.