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Please take a look at the accompanying photograph! What you can see are Chennai’s super-talented home-bakers and caterers. The youngest twosome are eighteen years old.  What you cant see are their tasty and innovative creations which they brought along to our “Whats Hot Tasting Session” held a few days ago.

Chennai foodie 1


So here it is, just a quick peak at our newly discovered foodie talent. Due to space constraint I can only give a one line intro to each. To get  complete details you’ll have to wait for my friday column every fortnight. Are you particular about home-cooked fare? Looking for gluten-free? Healthful? Vegan? Pickles? Luxuriously sinful? Your search ends here.  From home made probiotics to home made strawberry and gin icecream, from vegan peanut chocolate cups to prawn pickle. Each one brought their samples to taste and set them up in the hall, on the display tables  graciously provided by the multi-talented chef Ajit Bangera in the ITC Grand Chola. We sipped tea and tasted each one’s creations, shot photos on the grand staircase and moved onto the lush green gardens outside, Thanks Anjali Sharma, Chef Sai Chand,  Chef Ajit Bangera, Sanjukhtaa Roy, Sayani Sinha Roy for making this Whats hot tasting session possible.  A memorably delicious evening.


Palagapattu Bags

We just have to buy these cloth bags…  bags  made by women whose husband’s were farmers and who committed suicide because of drought. The sale of bags is their only source of income.

Sara koshy And Smitha Kuttaya brought these to our “Whatshottastingsession”  These cloth bags are perfect to hold cake boxes, for vegetable shopping, etc (Smitha is holding one in the photograph)



Would you believe that the most delicious peanut chocolate cups, also fudge brownie in a jar, are sans white sugar and actually vegan too? We have two 18 year olds Ranjani  and Akhil of Herbistore to thank for these. Baking Organic vegan chocolate cake is Smitha Kuttayya ‘s specialty. No maida, or preservative. And only Sulpher free sugar. Global theeni is her brand name and Pork chicken prawn pickle are her other specials.

Smitha Kuttayya (4)


HEALTHFUL …from sprouts to probiotics

You name it…alfa alfa, moong ,moth, black horsegram, brown horsegram, methi, peanuts, masoor, wheat, ragi ,jowar… Shobha Golecha sprouts it all. From organic grains and only on order basis. She also teaches  and advises on various ways to enrich dishes as well as new recipes.


I’m a great believer in the benefits of probiotics. I’m excited. This is the first time that I taste home-made probiotics. Abha Appaswamy makes the most delicious and much needed Kombucha, Milk Kefir, Beet Kvass, Ginger Ale. She also makes  Sauerkraut, Korean Kimchi, Hummus. All products contain live beneficial bacteria.Abha s Probiotics (3)

Snacky mood? Hungry? nothing better than munching on Seed crackers

Granola bars

Prathima Manikandan uses only natural sugars with low glycemic index, finest of seeds, nuts and dryfruits to make these. Pratima Manikandan (3)


Get high on icecream! Literally too! Roasted strawberry in gin,

Bailey’s ice cream cake are Bhavana Arya’s signatures. Feeling particularly celebratory?

She makes Motichoor ladoo ice cream too.

 Named “Intox” (short for intoxication) she adds alcohol to some but ensures  that no colour or essence or sugar is used.

Jumana huzefa bakes tarts from millet and  tops them deliciously with zucchini and cheese. Delightful

Amaranth cookies, Granola with almond, blueberry  and gluten free oats.

Hummus fans, 24 year old Anoli Mavani not only makes ten different hummus flavors but makes the tahini at home too. Ask for her eggless whole wheat Walnut cake too.

Sweet finale? Baking is a passion with 23 year old Samyuktha Vale. The result? Most delicious

Earl grey short bread.

Baked mango cheese cake and the crazily addictive flourless chocolate cake. She also bakes Vegan desserts to Wedding cakes. Go ahead pig out…Ever had a kheema stuffed, pig shaped bread? Deepasri Kar Specialize in bread.Chicken Stuffed Braided Bread Pumpkin buns and more.

Home sick Gujaratis ask for Paruls’ classic Chundo and Methiya Keri.  Many a seasonal vegetable  pickle too.

Juhina Sabrina Samuel’s Andhra Chicken malabar fish konkani prawn pickles are her forte.And her wine (black currant jaggery cinnamon) is in great demand too. Home made! Ofcourse!Hamaree rasoi (2)Samyuktha Vale (2)



Should you want to be be part of this “whats hot tastingsession” please email your details (background, specialities, pricing, home delivery, contact details) rashmiudaysingh18@gmail.cominstagram or twitter @rashmiudaysingh email Call 9884065010


Review: PLATE & PINT

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Charming surprise! Go past the long, brightly lit, wood-panelled corridor into alcove like rooms. Bakery counter, high table and chairs, booths, black and white floor, huge TV screen, large glass windows with green  foliage complete the decor.

Read my full review in today’s Bombay Times!


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We took a long while to get to it. Once there the gabled roof cottage like facade, the daylight filled  space charmed. Marble topped tables, wooden floor, open bakery, cheery wall, glass panes painted with ‘Whip It’. And counters with wickedly indulgent cupcakes, desserts and more. 

Read my full review in today’s Bombay Times!

American inspired Artisanal ELLIPSIS BAKERY CAFE.


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Shhh! There’s a new wine bar café in town. Surprise, surprise…there was no hype or hoopla surrounding it’s launch. But then keeping a low profile is in it’s DNA as it’s been sired by the simply named Kala Ghoda Café.

Read my full review in today’s Bombay Times!

Kala Ghoda Cafe
In the new Kala Ghoda Café & Wine bar; Niharika Singh (sitting)  
 and Ewa Simone (in red), Prerna Saraff.


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I love Mumbai’s suburbs, their energy and bustle. And always happy to check out the new restaurants which keep popping up. Like “Banjara”, the shining brand new restaurant part of the Goldfinch  hotel, which we chanced upon while exploring Andheri.

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Diners at Banjara, enjoying the lavish multi cuisine buffet as well as the ala carte. 



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My cup of tea. For sure! I refer not just to this stylish ornate new all-vegetarian Tea café, Tasse de The (TDT)  but also to Sanjay Asher  my legal superstar guest. We d popped into this Fort café ( close to his iconic solicitor firm office) for a lunch meeting.

Read my full review in today’s Bombay Times!

Tasse de Thé
In Munich, Matsuhisa…Nobu flanked by chef Vasili Papatheodorou and head sushi chef Shigeru Fujita. 


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Multi cuisine

Go. You must. It’s unique. It’s quirky fun. Its inexpensive too. Kya formula hai! 14 permanently popped up restaurants (some of young food entrepreneurs) in a sprawling, colourful, cacophonic room where you can eat, shop, booze.

Read my full review in today’s Bombay times!

Flea Bazar Cafe
At FLEA BAZAAR CAFE:  Abha Charanjiva (holding the Superappam kejriwal) flanked by Rajendra Sinh Sukhdev,  Vijay Gokhale and Vijay Lakshmi Sinh.

Review: BOTECO

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Brazil in BKC? Would  the cuisine be authentic? I was sceptical. And then the globetrotting foodie family Mehrotra pointed out that they’d dined at Brazilian Chef Guto Souza’s restaurant “Go with the flow” in Goa and that it was deliciously on point. And that  he was behind BKC’s Boteco too.  I was excited to dine there but all good things take time.

Read my full review in today’s Bombay Times!

At BOTECO: delicious togetherness, Seema, Anushka and  Jaideep Mehrotra.


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It’s a sweet dream come true. To feast on the latest and the greatest. To trip out on nutritious healthful (Quinoa pancake) as well as luxuriously sinful (banana tart tatin) and get the recipes for you too. All of this in globally renowned Michael Mina’s brand new “Mina Brasserie” which is the talk of Dubai. Every square inch of this sexily glamorous restaurant bristles with starpower of the who’s who. Including  our very own Mumbaikers.  Ambika Hinduja, the brilliant product And interiors designer and Raman Macker the don of hospitality, poised to make global waves with his new international projects. Dining with them and the dapper hotel chief Lorenzo Maraviglia,  Shiv Kumar and Ivo Krmpotic is a treat. As are Michael Mina’s Signature dishes, be it tuna tartare, Dover sole or the banana tarte tatin  Next morning I  breakfast on beautiful views of the city and the power pancake at yet another super restaurant, Penrose Lounge.

Need recipes? Please email

At MINA BRASSERIE Ambika Hinduja,  Raman Macker (in front) Lorenzo Marviglia. Shiv Kumar. Standing Ivo Krmpotic.