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Saturday, Dec 13, 2003

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Not sizzling enough

Although the recent Sizzler Fest at the Red-E Food Court was a let down in many ways, the chicken ballotine with thyme was a respite

I REMEMBER my English teacher emphasising how relevant Shakespeare is even today. Recently, sitting at the Red-E Food Court, I agreed with her wholeheartedly. I was waiting to tread new paths, taste new flavours, waiting to be surprised. The occasion was the Sizzler Fest. Yet, I was tossed about by Dame Fortune, like one of the Bard's dark heroes, helpless victims of destiny.

The menu is short and sweet with just three vegetarian, two seafood, three chicken, a beef, and a seafood and beef combine. As for the pricing, the vegetarian one costs Rs. 160 and the non-veg, Rs. 190. Not wanting to spare time or tummy space for an appetiser, we plunged straight into the sizzler experience.

The first one to come was cannelloni with spinach and mushroom served with tomato basil and peanut cream sauces. The pasta turned out to be stuffed crepes, gnocchi or potato dumpling doughy and the sauces barely average.

That is when the lines "It is a tale/full of sound and fury/Signifying nothing" came to mind. Yes, it is trivialising the lines, but what better way to describe such a let down.

The beef paupiath with Robert sauce was just a shade better. The beef rolls were stuffed with minced mushrooms and capsicum. The garlic butter, the other stuffing, had melted completely. The peppery beef fillet was rather fibrous. Robert turned out to be an undistinguished personality.

The respite came with chicken ballotine with thyme. This had de-boned chicken legs stuffed with chicken mousse. At last, something worth the price tag! The chicken-in-chicken effect was quite interesting. The gravy flavoured with thyme was better than the previous sauces.

There are no special desserts for the fest. So we explored the main menu. The result was tiramisu and a sundae, An Indian Summer, which is a combination of vanilla ice cream and gulab jamun topped with alphonso mango puree and nuts.

Now there are as many takes on the tiramisu as the number of restaurants serving it. This one had thin slices of coffee sponge between layers of creamy mousse. The sundae was passable.


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