I am not going to bore you all about one of the cardinal sins that I commit on a regular basis – gluttony.
I do not remember why I was always so fascinated with eating or gobbling or hogging, maybe because of my mother’s fascination with cooking delicacies or doing experiments and letting me taste them. (I will elaborate more in further posts).
My grandmother was an excellent cook and I believe she pampered me so much with her exquisite dishes that I became used to hogging and gluttony. But most of all, those cookery shows by Sanjeev Kapoor are to blame. I started jotting down his recipes from Khaana Khazana at the age of 7 years and by the time I turned 9 or 10, I wanted to cook.
I asked my mother to teach me how to cut vegetables and fruits. My mother, a typical Indian mother, refused, fearing that I might misuse this skill. As if a 9 year old child has that much brains to misuse the “sophisticated skill of cutting”!
I was always refused, so one fine day at 4pm, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I wanted to eat an apple while watching Aladdin. My mom was talking to the neighbours (if she reads this then she will correct me about what exactly she was doing) when I told her that I am cutting the apple. I held the apple in my left hand in a very primitive ape like way and used the knife in my right hand to cut it. The apple got cut but unfortunately the skin on the knuckle bone near my index finger as well. It was a deep cut and there was a blood bath in a matter of seconds.
I took matter into my hands and the resultant reached my own hands!
I was 9 years old then. I am 30 today and the gash is still very much visible.
Tandoori mushrooms: Tangy and spicy mushrooms which are juicy as well.
Dahi ke sholey: They are deep fried yes but airy and light at the same time. Not to forget the creamy insides with the balance between the sweetness of yogurt and the scovian factor of green chillies.
Cheese Burst Soya Chaap: As if the mellowness of this soya chaap wasn’t enough, these guys dipped the same in a cheesy sauce to entice our bellies.
Zaffraani Paneer: Paneer and assorted colourful bell peppers compliment each other in an excellent way. But when served in a hot onion based gravy and topped with carom seeds, do provide a tantalizing experience.
Paneer Tikka Lasagna:
Konkani fried chicken: So when you are bored with our typical north Indian chicken, this Konkani chicken with the flavours of Deccan will come to the rescue of your taste buds. The succulent chicken fried with crunchy peanuts in curry leaves and rai seeds is highly recommended.
Cold bar sticks: A refresher for your palate with the sweetness of fresh pineapple and the slight pungency of cheese.
Spiced meat devilled Scotch eggs: Move over the usual devilled eggs as these eggs are coated with keema and deep fried to perfect crispiness. The “devilled” portion is filled with keema again and served to you with a creamy dip.
Mutton shaami kebab: Being brought over a diet of kebabs, I found these slightly less crispier. The keema is finely pulverized and the occasional bite of green chillies feels heavenly though. I really wish that the hotness was more with the addition of spices.
Black chicken steak: Why did I taste this? The chicken is marinated with cream and coated with activated charcoal and then grilled. The resultant is a super juicy chicken that melts in the mouth. Served with fine textured mashed potatoes and grilled vegetables, this dish is highly recommended.
Chicken Dak Bungalow curry with Malabar Paratha: The chewy parathas are served with a tangy and creamy chicken curry. The chicken pieces are juicy but the curry could have been better.
Date and walnut cake with heavy cream : The walnuts are so soft and slightly gooey with the goodness of dates lending their lusciousness. Trust me, you won’t stop at one or even two!
Tipsy pudding: We expected a lot from this one but this is a just a normal fruit cake with the middle most sponge dipped in rum.
Looks like M block Greater Kailash market is upping it’s game when it comes to giving authentic Italian cuisine experiences.
Baked Pizza is a newly opened cafe with soothing interiors and an open kitchen with a wood fired oven to boost.
Pesto chicken Caesar salad: Ohhh the lightness of this salad casts a spell on me! The crunchy rocket & lettuce leaves, the firm chicken in the pesto sauce and the not so creamy flavour make this salad highly recommended.
Baked Cannolini: Spinach cannolini does not taste like one. The bitterness of spinach is absent and it’s mince goes well in the pasta sheets. The perfectly balanced mixture of red and white sauce and the melt in the mouth texture of this sauce will definitely leave you in splits. Highly recommended.
Cheese me baby: One of the best margharitas that I have ever tasted! The creamy amalgamation of four different types of cheese: bocconcini, English cheddar, mozzarella and parmesan compliments the occasional bitter bite of fresh basil leaves. Highly recommended.
Vinny’s list pizza: Every possible product of chicken which can be imagined is here. The chicken chorizo, sausage and keema, along with mushroom and caramelized onions is heavenly! Recommended.
Classic garlic bread sticks: Freshly baked with mozzarella cheese and enclosing tangy jalapenos and juicy sweet corn and served with garlic aoli – need we ask for more? Highly recommended.
So this particular area around Western Marg in Saket has been bustling with cozy cafes that are gradually capturing the attention of students and office going workforce alike. Case in point being the very famous Rise Cafe.
You’ll be reminded of the interior me of Elma’s at HKV when you visit Soho. Old world charm with snug ambience greets you and the delicious Italian menu beckons you to order more and more.
French Fries: Crispy exterior and perfectly salted – can we ask for more?
Belgian chocolate shake: Ohhh my! The smooth and thick texture with the rich flavour of chocolate and moderate sweetness will leave you in splits.
Half and half vegetarian pizza: The one half had buffalo cheese, capers, black olives and sun-dried tomatoes and was amazing in taste. The other half had red, yellow and green bell peppers, zucchini and buffalo cheese but was over grilled.
Half and half non vegetarian pizza: The one half had ham & mushrooms – the lovely juiciness of mushroom complimenting the succulence of ham. The other had grilled chicken which was chewy and dry.
Their pizzas are thin crusted and I love the use of buffalo cheese but they need to have more flavourful toppings while keeping the authenticity alive.
Shakes and smoothies are excellent and worth spending upon.
Tete-a-tete or Guftagu is what we yearn for after a long hectic day at work or an unpredictable week. And when that is coupled by Sher-o-shayari, stand up comedy or poetic renditions, then the experience becomes super special.
The relaxing interiors coupled with myriad colours will enchant you and the love food counter will definitely keep you salivating.
The menu boasts of many lip smacking and never heard before dishes like chicken rollers, fish fingers which are coated in KFC style, red velvet shake and what not!
A traditional cuisine specific food festival has a special place in my heart. Especially when that cuisine is from the Punjabi heartland of our country. So when JW Marriot, Aerocity comes up with an Amritsari Swaad Tadka at their famed K3, could I have said no? Absolutely no!
Starting from perfectly smoked Kandhari Paneer Tikka, juicy and tangy mushrooms – Tandoori Khumbh, spicy Highway Tandoori Kukkad (chicken cooked in hand pounded spices) and meat de tikki (chewy mutton prepared in aromatic spices), your belly does get filled after these appetizing appetizers.
And what is a Punjabi meal if it is not relished with Makke di roti, Sarson da saag, chhole and stuffed kulche? Though the chhole could have been spicier although the texture was excellent.
And for vegetarians, there is a dearth of varied options – Paneer Taka Tak (loved it!), Kadhi Chawal, Hare moong ki daal (now that is something new!) and Matar Vadiyan di sabzi.
And for non vegetarians, the Mutton Chawal is one dish worth experimenting. The mutton pieces are succulent although the rice could be more flavourful. Do not expect Biryani, this is Amritsar special.
And the best one is always reserved for the last. Ever heard of mutton keema halwa? Yes you read it right, the keema halwa. This was warm and heavenly and tasted like moong daal halwa.
So when are you visiting next? The festival is on till 25th November.