The Truth about Aphrodisiacs

There’s a nifty saying in Kashmiri that goes, “Pir chun’e bod; yakin chu bod” which translates as “It’s not the doctor who is great; its your belief in him that does the trick”. Two aspects strike me insofar as aphrodisiac foods go. The first is that the Kashmiris would appear to be right after all.…

The Uncomplicated Flavours of Kumaon

“Chop off the head of the goat and with the animal’s feet tied, hang it over an open coal fire till you can easily skin it.” That is the first step in preparing the Kumaoni classic, kachpak. I spent last weekend at Bhimtal’s Fisherman’s Lodge, being educated in the intricacies of local cooking. Many of…

Militancy’s Child

Fear and other emotions are alien to a generation of Kashmiri youth who grew up under the shadow of militancy..   In 1991, when militancy was at its peak, Omar Jan was three years old. It was the year I got married and travelled to Kashmir as a bride. Before that, my visits to Kashmir had…

Pizzas

When Chef Dharamvir of Taj Palace went to Istanbul on a study course, the last thing he expected to find there were pizzas. Yet, scarcely any street corner was free of a pizza joint. Called lahmacun locally, totally unlike the Italian version, Turkish pizzas are much thicker and the fillings were much more India-friendly. The…

Ahaar 2008

Kings in the medieval period had a fool-proof method of checking out public opinion against them: they would go in disguise to the markets and strike up conversations with the man on the street. ITPO would do well to take a leaf out of the royal book, because every time FHRAI magazine went to a…

Magique

Food personality, wedding caterer, TV show host and restaurateur – Marut Sikka’s larger-than-life personality dominates the garden restaurant in the slightly out of the way Garden of Five Senses. It is supposed to be a de-stressing zone with soft music, heaters in winter and mist fans in summers to take the edge of Delhi’s infamously…

Capital Curry

If life in Sarita Vihar has one problem, it is the scarcity of restaurants in the vicinity. There are dhabas and tiny take-away restaurants in each market, but restaurants? Dear me, no! Which is why Capital Curry next door in Jasola is a welcome addition to the landscape. Small but fairly well-appointed, it is about…

Melting Pot

Sometimes, projects that are outside South Delhi hit the jackpot faster: you don’t have to cut through layers of pretence for one. Melting Pot is a new-look food-court atop a mall in Shalimar Bagh that includes a coffee lounge at one end, bar at another and a kids’ play area in a third. I visited…

Yum Yum Tree

Ignore the decidedly non-serious name. This stylishly appointed restaurant in the heart of New Friends Colony Market has a first to it: the cuisine is Singaporean Chinese, one of the few types of Chinese food that is consonant with our palate, yet one that frequently gets overlooked in favour of classical Cantonese. One of the…