Tucked in the cosy by lanes of Khar is the one of the most wonderful restaurants crafting delicious south Indian preparations. The ambiance is rustic and casual all the same. The cuisine served is delectable, and takes a serious departure from the regular Dosai and Ildi, introducing people to the very crux of south Indian cuisine. I was warmly greeted by the staff, who were quick on a heel and very responsive all the same.
I started with the South Indian version of Tomato soup, more commonly known as Rasam. This is a tangy tomato soup simmered on a slow fire and tempered with homemade spices. On a general note this dish is savoured with golden brown, crispy, ‘mendu wada’. This often makes for a popular south Indian breakfast dish. However there are many who savour the same as a starter too.
I washed the delicious soup with ‘Sambaram’, a typical Kerala style ‘Chaas’ (A kind of butter milk).
My meal was accompanied with an array of chutneys and pickles that transported me back straight to my childhood days. I dug into the typical freshly ponded ‘coconut and coriander chutney’, ‘Mulgapudi’ (also known as gunpowder, and made with a combination of roasted dal’s and spices. This is a dry powder chutney, that is often accompanied with ghee or oil), and carrot pickle.
I also enjoyed some delicious starters. Some of these included the ‘Paneer Fry’ a dish from Mahe, North Kerala. The dish is prepared by shallow frying cottage cheese in red chilly powder, green chilly paste, and an array of spices, and curry leaves. The ‘Potato Ghee Roast’ is another dish from Mahe, Kerela that became a favourite. The dish comprises of potatoes roasted in ground spices, and clarified butter.
I went onward to try some of the mains including ‘Thuvar Dal’ (A dal fry). A typical type of lentil often used to make ‘Sambhar’. ‘Rajma Sambhar’ is a speciality from Manglore. As the name suggests, the dish is prepared using Rajma lentil and is cooked on a slow flame together with freshly ponded Sambhar masala. I also cherished the delicious okra dish called ‘Crispy Bhindi Pachadi’. The dish is from Mahe, in north Kerala. The dish comprises of crispy okra cooked, and dunked in cool curd and coconut meat. The dish was accompanied with unpolished brown Kerala rice, which is more colloquially known as ‘Palakkad Matta’, Paratha, appam (a steamed rice flour preparation) and Dosa. The meal was washed down with a typical South Indian Pulao (A rice dish that is also accompanied with an assortment of vegetables/ prawn/ chicken and mutton.)
As I was just about signing off I found myself savouring the lip-smacking dessert variety. Some of these included the delicious Paalpayasam/Jagarried coconut (Rice slowly cooked in milk, coconut, and sweetened with jaggery) and last but not the least Seviyaa with pomegranate. This dish comprises of slowly cooked vermicelli with pomegranate seeds and vanilla.
As I signed off I extend my warmest acknowledgement to all the staff to impart with a wonderful experience. I truly felt at home.