Wednesday, July 27, 2011

How to Eat Sushi

Sushi is fast becoming one of the most favourite foods in the world and Sushi Bars are popping up everywhere I've been recently from Cairo to Istanbul to Dubai to Delhi.

CNN Go has a lovely and informative article by double Michelin-starred Tokyo chef - Koji Sawada.
How to eat sushi
With chopsticks or fingers? Wasabi or no? A double Michelin-starred Tokyo chef sets the record straight and shows us the way.

Some time ago, I also found this illustration on Good FoodPatrick James himself is still looking for the original artist and information credit.

So that settles it, I'm not being "Indian" or "desi" if I eat Sushi with my fingers. :)

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Makhan Bhog, Guwahati

Makhan Bhog,
Fancy Bazar Branch

98540 81412

Makhan Bhog seems to be quite a famous veg fast food chain in Guwahati. The Fancy Bazar branch is small. Standing room for 10 people only in the middle of an extremely crowded and quite a dirty bazaar.

I have had to visit this bazaar a couple of times when curtain shopping and Makhan Bhog seems like the cleanest place around, to eat at. Given the surroundings, I have only risked the hot food stuff being prepared at the venue. So while there are plenty of sweets in the display counter, I just had the large onion kachoris 14/- and samosas 8/- one afternoon and the smaller dal/khasta kachoris 8/- and the imartis/kind of jalebi 10/- another evening.

The onion kachoris and samosas are excellent and the imartis are the perfect way to refresh your tongue from the preceding assault of the spices. Khasta kachoris are not my favourite, so I was ambivalent to them. The crispiness of the kachoris and samosas are perefect contrasts to the soft filling within.

Definitely a must visit if you are in the area, I hope to visit the larger outlets some time soon and smaple a larger variety.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Cafe Coffee Day, Guwahati

Cafe Coffee Day
RG Baruah Road
opp Tanz Supermarket

0361 241 3160

This CCD too serves up its standard fare of decent coffees. Personally I love their cafe frappes 62/-, choco frappes 88/- and mochachillos 53/-.

Among the hot snacks, the only one I like is the garlic mayonnaise chicken sandwich 81/-. The spicy chicken calzone 43/- is more of a puff and average. The chicken tikka sandwich 76/- is not too appetising though.

The day I had the American muffins 55/- they were quite dry. Even the chocolate syrup could not impart enough moisture.

CCD is very much a youth hangout for its reasonably lower priced coffees in a cool ambience (vis a vis India Coffee house).

I prefer to pick up one of their ice coffees as a take away and avoid the snacks unless I'm in a hurry and need something hot to eat.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

King Chilli, Guwahati

King Chilli,
Hotel Gateway Grandeur
GS Road

0361 6111 000

94350 10935, 94354 03484

No home delivery

King Chilli is located within the Gateway Grandeur Hotel. One of 2 in-house restaurants, the other being Florentines. Florentines serves Indian and Continental food & King Chilli serves local ethnic food.

We sat down at Florentines, but decided to order from the King Chilli menu. The waiters were reasonably obliging about the 2 of us wanting the menu from the next restaurant and ordering just milkshakes and sides from their own menu.

We decided to try the duck fry at 250/-. While we have always loved duck, the meat here was of the tougher, more muscled variety - the kind of difference between eating gaunchi/country chicken vs broiler chicken.

The Pork king chilli 400/- flavoured with the regions famous bhoot jholakia/ king chilli was absolutely excellent. This particular chilli, burns the lips more than the tongue and is highly addictive. I've cooked with dry bhut jolokia before, but this was the first time that we were trying the fresh variant.

While we loved the pork, I'd like to bring it home as a take away and cook it some more until the fat breaks down, because I'd love to eat the flavoured and slimmed down fat that results from cooking pork for long periods of time.

kolachil/banana flower fry 100/- was middling. Nothing I would try again. Its the first time I was eating banana flowers as a dish, so I'm willing to try the Bengali and Tamilian versions, but this one wasn't exciting at all. The dish wasn't flavoured and the flavour of the banana flower itself was too mild to carry it off (In case you are wondering, I did try it before I put the king chilli pork on my tongue)

Its traditional to eat the Assamese Joha rice with these dishes, but since we have been eating Joha rice daily at the guest house, we decided to order the basmati rice 150/- for familiarity and nostalgia.

All of this was served with a nice big bowl of Naga Chilli Pickle.

We would like to go back as we were very impressed with the cleanliness, the atmosphere, the hygiene and the food, but we will most likely call ahead and order, because service is really slow. It looks like they don't get much crowd and hence everything has to be cooked from scratch after you order.

Prices here were inclusive of taxes.

Florentine Fine Dining in the same hotel serves Indian and Continental cuisine.
We ordered a lacchedar paratha for 40/- a cold coffee 95/- whether with or without ice cream and a vanilla milk shake for 85/-. This total of 220/- turned to 242/- with the addition of taxes. (5% VAT & 5% Service charge)

The waiter from Florentines made us promise that we would come back to taste their signature chicken and veg florentines with a warning that it would take 40minutes to prepare once we placed the order.

Edited to Add:
 Ambience here is really nice. Service is good. Its very clean and hygenic and a lovely place to take visiting friends out for an Assamese meal, but service is slow. So we call from home an hour before leaving to order what we would like and an hour later, we reach there and the food is waiting for us piping hot & fresh.

Khalsa Parivaar, Guwahati

Khalsa Parivaar
GS Road
Bora Service

0361 2454 656

Wanted to pick up something to supplement the dhal-chawal roti-sabji prepared for our dinner at the guest house. On a hunch, we just stopped at Khalsa Parivaar - a small but clean and hygenic place with a few tables inside in air conditioned comfort. We ordered a chicken hariyali (65/- half plate 6 pieces) and a chicken tikka (130/- full plate 12 pieces).

The hariyali was average but the tikka was tongue tinglingly and spicily excellent. They don't deliver home but you can pack a take away. We are definitely going back here.

Went back for the smoked chicken - 220/- Its absolutely fantastic. Spicy - so don't order if you don't like your tongue on fire.

I'm addicted to this smoked chicken now and I'm going to be craving it in my dreams.

Oh & before I forget, the prices above are inclusive of all taxes.

Edited on 25 July to add:
Kisne nazar lagaa di? Khalsa Parivaar has been shut for the last 3 weeks. sob, sob!


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