We north Indians surely need to know more about the peninsular cuisine. Coastal cuisine is much more than Idli Dosa or lemon rice. There is more to it and I discovered the hidden treasures of our South Indian dishes at a recent bloggers table organised at the Peninsular Kitchen.
Talking about the ambience, the décor reminds you of the coasts – anchors, ships, canoe, ropes and water. The place could have been a bit bigger.
Here are the dishes I tried:
Gonghura chicken fry : Tangy, juicy and spicy chicken fried in gonghura leaves. This dish is a must try and so amazing that we helped ourselves to multiple servings.
Madur vada : This dish comes from Madur, a place in Mysore. These vadas were a bit hard. There was a prominent flavour of peanuts in these.
Kerala stir fried prawns : These were spicy, crispy and drenched in choped onions and garlic. The hotness of this dish was pretty overwhelming.
Khatti Macchli : The fish pieces were soft,tangy and had a subtle flavour of mustard. Another good dish.
Butter pepper garlic Mushrooms : Adorned with chopped spring onions and garlic, the mushrooms were juicy and ohh so divine. The amount if garlic was too much but it made the dish better. I loved this dish though it could have had more flavours.
Tossed mini idli : Tossed in desi ghee and coconut oil, these were taste less – the way they should be and served with gun powder.
Ambittini: Tangy, sweet and sour cocktail..
Punar Puli Saaru: This dish had kokum and was lentil based. Kokum made it quite tangy and delicious. It was also adorned with curry leaves and was a bit sweet as well.
Mutton stew : A drool worthy dish – medley of curry leaves, bay leaf, coconut milk, ginger and mutton pieces, this was thick and creamy. A must try.
Payasam : It was way too sweet and thick because of jaggery and was topped with almonds. I did not like it.
Pineapple halwa : Mediumly sweetened and with a gooey texture, this dessert was a very innovative take on our usual halwa. The flavour of green cardomam was quite prominent here.
Malabar Parantha : It had gone all soggy and chewy but was still good to eat.
Beans Porial : A very bland dish with chopped French beans as the main ingredient. Could have had more flavours.
Vegetable Stew : Same texture as the mutton stew with the jullienes of vegetables.
Seafood Rasam : Not recommended. The boiled prawns, calamari and fish were served in a tangy soup but the smell and taste of the seafood was pretty prominent here.
Chicken Chettinad : I loved it! It was heavy with spices and went well with the Parantha.