Andhra Thali at Gonguura, Juhu

Andhra thali at Gonguura

I have tremendous respect for people who work towards making regional food more popular, and that’s what keeps taking me to Gitika Saikia’s Assamese pop-ups or at Rushina’s APB Cook Studio (you should check out her Culinary Legacy series). Recently, I met another such passionate foodie who gave Mumbai its first Andhra restaurant.

Srividya, the owner of Gonguura in Juhu, is extremely soft-spoken and talks about her cuisine with a glint in her eyes. I had a long chat with her over an Andhra thali, where she introduced me to the vegetarian Andhra food. Continue reading

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Chillies and Porridge: Food culture, history and memories

Chillies and Porridge

Chillies and Porridge

Food memoirs and history of food are slowly becoming my favourite topics when it comes to food writing/reading. The food gets so much more character when it becomes a part of someone’s memory. There’s also this joy of reading about how the eating habits of people evolved, how they learnt about new flavours and how did they create something new out of all that knowledge.

Harper Collin’s latest title Chilies and Porridge, compiled and edited by food writer Mita Kapur is the latest addition to my book shelf. The book is a collection of chapters written by chefs, journalists, food writers and fashion designers who’ve shared their intimate relationship with food. Continue reading

Restaurant Review: Bay 15, Goa

Last weekend I spent a leisurely time in Goa at the lovely Bay 15 (I’ve written a detailed post about the property here).

A considerable amount of time was spent eating; our dinner on Friday night lasted for three and a half hour, which explains a lot. The restaurant has three menus – Goan, pan Indian and Mediterranean. Or, you can opt for a six-course tasting menu.

Bay 15’s al fresco restaurant is spread across the lawn with a spectacular view of Arabian sea and Mormurgao port in the evening. On our first evening, Chef Mir Hafizur Raheman had prepared a degustation menu which started with Watermelon and Feta Bite with Minty Melon Shooter – refreshing but lacking the seasonal sweet taste of watermelon.

Watermelon and Feta Bite with Minty Melon Shooter

Watermelon and Feta Bite with Minty Melon Shooter, Bay 15 Goa

The second course – Crab, Mango and Avocado Salad – impressed us tremendously. Fresh crab paste was sandwiched between layers of chopped avocado and ripe mango which added a nice sweet-sour touch to the dish. The flavours were in complete tandem with each other and the plates were wiped clean. Continue reading

Wine and Food Pairing at JW Marriott with The Happy High

Last Wednesday was spent in the company of fine wines and finer people at a wine tasting event at JW Marriott organized by The Happy High – a Mumbai based beverage consulting, education and experience firm started by Ajit Balgi. I have been interacting with Ajit on Twitter and was surprised when he invited me over to taste Austrian wines. Surprised because my knowledge of wines is limited to mostly the Indian brands.

The wines, that Ajit received from a family run winery in Austria, were to be paired with food at Mezzo Mezzo – JW Marriott’s Italian restaurant. Mezzo Mezzo has recently appointed Chef Matteo Arvonio who has previously worked with Four Seasons Mumbai. The wines that we were going to try came from Topf winery (in existence since 1751) located in Kamptal in the Danube region known for its Gruner Veltliners and Rieslings. You can read more about Austrian wines here.
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Product Review – Snackosaur (healthy snacking)

For those who are trying to control what they eat but are forced to give in to that 4pm hunger, life is tough. Office canteens don’t serve anything that doesn’t have greasy and fried written all over it. Get out on the streets and you’re tempted by masala dosa, sandwich and vada pav. In short, diet aur weight loss ki band baj jati hai. The alternative could be carrying your own homemade healthy snack but honestly, who goes through that much trouble unless pregnant or seriously unwell.

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