Tantalizing those taste buds

Never did I imagine that I’d ever equate Mexican food with the cuisine of Pakistan, but in the last fortnight, that’s exactly what happened. Taj Hotel invited me to a Mexican food festival where celebrity chef cum TV food show hostess cum restaurateur Monica Patiño was showcasing the food of her country. (Today is the…

Singapore’s Peranakan Connection

Are the Peranakans more Malayan or more Chinese? The jury’s still out on that one, but first things first: who exactly are they? They’re the offspring of the marriages between Chinese men and Malay women that took place mostly in 18th century Singapore, as Chinese settlers – traders, workers and merchants – arrived from all…

100 years of Restaurating in Delhi

It was the year of the Great Darbar, 1911. A young man from the outskirts of Delhi thought he spied an opportunity to earn a living. He moored a push-cart near Gate Number One of the Jama Masjid, and served dal as well as meat and potatoes with freshly made rotis. Business boomed: he was,…

Manish Mehrotra goes to Tel Aviv

Mustard oil Haakh Jaggery Banarasi aloo papad Sabudana papad Kolhapuri masala Whole aamchur Any guesses what these ingredients could be doing in Chef Manish Mehrotra’s diminutive office at Indian Accent? They’re getting ready to be shipped to Tel Aviv where Mehrotra is getting set to participate in a food festival. As festivals go, this one…

The Austerity of Maharashtrian Food

Don’t underestimate Chef Prakash Pawaskar of Trident, Nariman Point, Mumbai. In the outwardly unassuming Executive Sous Chef lurks a connoisseur of the cuisine of Maharashtra in all its Spartan glory. Pawaskar’s links with the food of his home state go back to the time of Shivaji as a matter of fact: his father-in-law, from the…

Rice

I’s a fair bet that more rice gets eaten in South East Asia and the Indian sub-continent than anywhere else in the world. The interesting thing is to note not how much is eaten as how it is eaten. McDonald’s have famously added a rice burger to their menu in Japan, which tells you not…

Prankster

A modern take on soul food Modern Indian cuisine Atmospherics: Quite the largest restaurant, that too, on a single floor in the Sector 29 market, if not in the whole of Gurgaon. The theme is back to college, so the entire space has been broken up into verandahs and terraces, canteens and laboratories, class-rooms and…

Kurry Souk (Hidden Gems)

One of the most endearing facets of Delhi is how you stumble upon the most magical food in a seemingly uninspiring corner of the city. Though our neighbour Gurgaon does not share much with Delhi, it too has the same magic. Qutab Plaza in a largely residential area, DLF Phase I, doesn’t have much to…

Bangal versus Ghoti

“When I tasted my best friend’s mother’s fish curry, it had tamarind in it. I was so horrified by a fish preparation that was sour that I had to wrestle with my better self not to spit it out”. That was my neighbour Sweta talking about her class-mate. The surprising thing is that both Sweta…