During this period of gloom, order in, if you find comfort in good food

Curry for the soul

These are troubling times. And what’s worse is that you can’t cheer yourself up by eating out. Food has always been a great mood enhancer, but in this age of COVID-19, we have been advised not to visit restaurants. To top it off, quite a few eateries have downed their shutters temporarily.

So, I did what I do when the mood is low: ordered in. Since I was in Central Delhi, I thought I’d get food delivered from an outlet somewhere in Connaught Place. That was when I remembered a place called Biryani Badshah. A friend whose office is in the neighbourhood often orders food from there, and had urged me to try it out. So I looked up Swiggy, found that it was listed, and placed my order.

I asked for some Chicken Biryani (full, ₹359), Mutton Dry Roast (₹369), Ginger Chicken Curry (₹399), Lachcha Paratha (₹69) and Double ka Meetha (₹109). Swiggy took the order, but the delivery boy’s two-wheeler had some problems (as I said, these are difficult times), so someone from Biryani Badshah very kindly did the delivery.

The restaurant is in K 14 Connaught Place (Ph: 011-41088220), but has outlets in Kailash Colony, Noida, Shahpur Jat, Mukarji Nagar, Vasant Kunj, and Rajouri Garden. Gurugram has four outlets. I was told by a staffer that they have a base kitchen, but the food is cooked in the restaurants, too.

The menu is comprehensive, and includes the usual tikkas, butter chicken, and other such curries. But what’s interesting is that it has quite a few Andhra dishes, and a few from other parts of the South and elsewhere.

My Chicken Biryani, for instance, had a Hyderabadi touch: It had a boiled egg in it, and the pieces of chicken (quite a few of them) in the rice were nicely spiced and substantially large. The rice was light, and had a tangy taste that I thoroughly enjoyed. The salan that came with it, however, was much too hot for me.

During this period of gloom, order in, if you find comfort in good food

The Ginger Chicken Curry, while tasty, was a bit of a surprise for there was little to suggest that it had been flavoured with ginger. But the chicken was soft, and the gravy deliciously thick.

The Dry Roast Mutton, again, reminded me of the masalas used in the immensely popular southern Indian dish called Chicken 65. I loved the Lachcha Paratha, which was flaky and crisp, not hard or rubbery. I dipped it in the gravy of the non-ginger chicken curry and had quite a nice meal.

I had a look at the menu later and saw that it included several Andhra dishes, including the Andhra Dal Fry (₹299), Andhra Brinjal Masala (₹299), Andhra Chicken Curry (₹399) and even a Chicken 65 Biryani (₹389). It also has Malabar Chicken (₹399), and the seafood section has dishes such as Malabar Prawn Curry (₹459) and Prawn Koliwada (₹409).

Ginger or no ginger, we had a happy meal. As I polished off the last morsel. The world around me looked a little better, prompting me to raise a toast: Here’s to happier days ahead.

The writer is a seasoned food critic

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Printable version | Apr 2, 2020 3:36:03 PM |

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