Food spot Metroplus

Been there, relished that

Aslam at Matia Mahal Photo S. Subramanium

Aslam at Matia Mahal Photo S. Subramanium   | Photo Credit: S_Subramanium

Time to raise a toast to some of the memorable eating experiences of the year

This is my favourite time of the year. It’s not just the festive season or the weather that cheers me up. What I like in particular is an exercise that I’ve been indulging in for the last few years. I try and recall all the food places that I visited over the year, and raise a toast to the more memorable experiences.

I think on top of the list would be Aslam’s. Aslam, in Matia Mahal, makes a butter chicken that you just can’t forget. He grills the chicken in front of you, and then douses it with hot melted butter. Some masalas are added to the chicken, and you eat it just off the tawa. Sinful it may be, but it’s also the most delicious tandoori butter chicken that you can ever have.

Another little place close to Matia Mahal is Sheeren Bhawan, which is known for its sweets. I went there because I had been told about its halwas. And what halwas they were! I was in search of safed gajar ka halwa which they didn’t have. But I ate their aloe vera halwa, mild and soft, and enjoyed it as much as their habshi halwa, rich and creamy. Sheeren Bhawan is in Chitli Qabr, and this is the time to go there for its special sweets.

My own neighbourhood and the area around it gave me immense pleasure this year. I had some delicious sandwiches and pizzas at The Sandwich Factory in Mayur Vihar Phase 2. Patrick Sarkar, the gentleman who runs it, tells me that he is soon going to set up a small eatery where you can sit and have your pastas and sandwiches in the area. I am waiting for that to happen. Meanwhile, I shall order its white pizzas (no tomatoes, only chicken on cheese) and olive-laden bruschetta.

The other place that I had a happy relationship with was Tiffin Kaku, a home delivery outfit in Vaishali, Ghaziabad. Tiffin Kaku has all kinds of Bengali dishes — from hilsa in season to rahu curry and kosha mangsho, served with pulao. The menus change every now and then, so you have to keep an eye on their website. One day I ordered lunch from there, and on another occasion, we had a delightful breakfast of luchi (maida puris) and kachoris. It was blissful.

Elsewhere, too, I had delicious Bengali meals – at the Big Bongg Theory in Shahpur Jat and Bong Appetit in Malviya Nagar. These restaurants serve various kinds of Bengali delicacies such as shukto and doi maach, and if you like Bengali cuisine, you should try them out sooner rather than later.

Speaking of regional food, I had some excellent Kerala meals at two new Kerala restaurants – Mahabelly in Saket and The Toddy Shop at Hauz Khas Village.

I fondly recall the hot fish curry at the former, and a spicy beef fry at the latter. And how can I forget Appus (INA Market), where our meal for three, consisting of chicken curry, pothu fry and pothu curry with Malabar parottas, cost us all of Rs. 420? But if international cuisine is what moves you, I would suggest the following. Diggin opposite Gargi College is an incredibly cheerful and brightly lit place, and has the most delicious pork sandwiches and pizzas. Uzzuri on Janpath and Fatty Bao in the Sangam complex at RK Puram serve the most delicious pork belly in town. And if you like Thai with a tweak, try out Ziu in Sangam. As you can see, it’s been a good year, gastronomically speaking. I expect the New Year to be equally exciting. Let our stomachs – and thoughts – never be empty in 2016!

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 3:37:32 AM |

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