Review

HOME TALENT UNLIMITED

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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
HOT HAPPENING HOME TALENT…

A SNEAK PEAK

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.

BAGS OF GOODNESS

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)

 

VIVA VEGAN

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)

WE ALL SCREAM FOR…

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)

Cheers!

BE PART OF OUR NEXT WHATS HOT TASTING SESSION

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 anjalisharma966@gmail.com Call 9884065010

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PATIALA IN BERLIN

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Jai ho! In Berlin’s magnificent, over a century old legendary landmark Adlon, there’s a beautiful Indian connection. Not only did the Maharaja of Patiala stay here regularly, ( as did and still do global royalty, heads of state, Hollywood and Bollywood superstars) but he also gifted Adlon a priceless elephant fountain (please see photograph) which occupies pride of place  in the throbbing heart of the hotel. In front of this elephant fountain I catch up with the charming, knowledgeable Sabina Held and the celebrated chef Hendrik Otto of the two Michelin starred restaurant, Lorenz Adlon Esszimmer . Here I have an amazing meal of vegetarian masterpieces too. This, since  Im researching vegetarian dining in Berlin. Masterpieces of flavour and texture dazzle as I dine with Bandana Tewari (who is here to address Ethical fashion at the Berlin fashion week). I taste it all. Including the comfort cuisine, as I  wallop the signature Berlin currywurst  in Adlon’s other restaurant.  In fact Adlon offers it all, including yoga sessions, singing bowl healings, meditations and more by Vijay Kumar Vyas. Jai ho!

FOR THE BOX (17)
Michelin starred Chef Hendrik Otto, Sabina Held, Vijay Kumar Vyas in front of Maharaja Patiala’s Elephant fountain at the historic Adlon.

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!

FRAGRANT PARADISE

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A dream come true. Im a fragrance and perfume buff and for me, the world’s first of it’s kind  “The bar Fragrances” is Paradise found.

Here, in Berlin, I m not only smelling my favourite fragrance but also drinking and tasting it. Not only have all cocktails have been inspired by famous perfumes but even the Bar bites are matched to magnify the fragrance.Willy Wonka playfulness with sophisticated intimacy here in Potsdammer Platz’s Ritz Carlton’s innovative Bar. Every square inch bristles with glamor.Shimmery black mirrored walls, black gold columns, you enter the bar and you’re actually inside the menu. In it’s hall of Fame, perfumes are showcased under glass domes. There’s an Indian connect too…Penhaligons Vaara whose spicy Indian fragrance inspired by Maharaja Gaj Singh of Jodhpur’s fragrance profile is brilliantly transformed into a cocktail  by the award winning bar manager Arnd Heissen. He deftly and expertly shakes in  pear puree saffron infused rose water vanilla honey tonka bean sandalwood. Twists are added to classic bar bites to match the perfume by chef Oliver and my multi-sensory experience awaits.

 I smell, sip, bite into my perfume. Bliss in Berlin! 

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Multi sensory Fragrance bar: Arnd Heissen and Chef Oliver making edible perfumes.

Recipe: NOBU’S RECIPE KOHLRABI SALAD

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HEAVENLY BLISS

I’m  on top of the world. In more ways than one. Not just because Im close to heaven in this sunny cool  360 degree terrace bar. It’s the only one of it’s kind in Munich, the city of  sophisticated charm and traditional Bavarian elegance.  And right here just a few floors below, I’ve also  stumbled upon my all time favorite Japanese maestro’s restaurant. The one hero who took Japanese food out of it’s obscure space and put it squarely on the world gourmet map. I refer of course to Nobu… Matsuhisa Nobuyuki. He infused vibrant Peruvian flavors into the pristine minimalistic Japanese cuisine and voila…conquered the world.

NOBU IN GERMANY

Exciting! When  Nobu the Japanese maestro sets up his first outpost in Germany he pays homage to it by creating a very special dish using the local Kohlrabi. And not only is that a treat in itself but the brilliant chef very generously shares the recipe too.  I’ve been a Matsuhisa Nobu fan past three decades. He came from Tokyo via Lima Peru and put his vibrantly delicious interpretation of Japanese cuisine on the world map. I’ve been following him around… learning cooking (in Paris) to meeting him in LA (at  chef Wolfgang Pucks amazing charity dinner) to dining  at many of Restaurants across the globe from Los Angeles  to Dubai.No doubt my last visit to Munich was exciting, (for my TV show for ET Now in the October Fest (wearing the traditional dirndl of course) but this visit is amazing. Right here amidst the old city, the  Altstadt, I find Nobu in the timelessly elegant Mandarin Oriental which combines modern design, contemporary luxury  with it’s amazingly subtle oriental accents.

In the beautiful brown and gold restaurant, enrobed in natural materials including stone, leather and wood I taste bliss. Here, in Munich, his signature miso black cod is as lusciously addictive as ever and the specially created local dish of kohlrabi salad delights. The brilliant executive chef Vasili Papatheodorou and head sushi chef Shigeru Fujita continue the Nobu magic.

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 Nobu with chef Vasili Papatheodorou & chef Shigeru Fujita. 
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chef Rabea Keller & chef Vasili Papatheodorou. 

NOBU’ S RECIPE KOHLRABI Salad (can substitute with baby spinach).

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Nobu’s tribute to Germany.

 “We use baby greens a lot at my restaurants. Leaf vegetables turn harsh
and bitter with age, younger ones just naturally taste fresher” says Nobu  “Add
some Dry Miso and fried leeks, and you have a salad bowl full of umami.

SERVES 2 TO 4

3 oz. (90g)  Kohlrabi OR baby spinach

DRY MISO AND YUZU
DRESSING

4 tsp. (10 g) Dry Miso

  1. (30 g) fried leek (recipe follows)

Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (grated)
4 tsp. (10 g)

1 tsp. yuzu citrus juice
Truffle oil

Extra virgin olive oil
Diced red bell pepper, for topping

Soak the baby spinach in ice water to crisp and drain.

Combine the baby spinach, Dry Miso, fried leek, Parmigiano-Reg-
giano, yuzu juice, truffle oil and extra virgin olive oil in a bowl and toss.
Arrange on a plate and top with bell pepper.

Fried Leek

Makes 1 oz. (30 g)

3 in. (about 8 cm) white part of leek
Oil for deep-frying

Slash the leek lengthwise to open, and discard the inner core. Wash off the sand
between the layers under running cold water. Cut into thin shreds. Deep-fry in
low-temperature oil, about 300°F (150°C), until just before it begins to brown. Drain
on a wire rack in warm spot in the kitchen for 1 to 2 hours.

The just-fried leek looks soggy at first, but don’t worry Keeping the fried leek on a
wire rack in a warm part of the kitchen drains out the oil and turns the leek crispy.

 

CHILLI HOT

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Mocktail…chilli hot…Tom ka Mhak.
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 On top of the world…with Rabea Keller and Isabelle Winter.

It’s as  close to heaven as I can get in Munich. Crowning the stunningly beautiful Neo Renaissance building ( 1880) is the Terrace.

Open during the summer months, The Terrace is one of Munich’s best-kept secrets. Not only do I dine sip cocktails , take a dip in the heated pool but also learn more about Munich from the gorgeous Rabea Keller and Isabelle Winter amid oriental statues and large potted plants. Love the chic Asian touches with a Mediterranean feel.

Feasting on the  Asian, Mediterranean and Arabic dishes and the stunning view is a treat enough but then it gets chilli-hot…as the bartender shakes up a cocktail with a chilli. Here’s the recipe…

Virgin Tom ka Mhak

Shake together…Lime juice, pineapple juice, coconut syrup, lemon grass

BOX

YOUR ATTENTION PLEASE…WHATSHOT TASTING SESSION

Do you cook? Bake? Provide foodie services out of home? Would you like your work and yourself to be featured in this column? I will be in Chennai on the 12 TH JULY and holding a “Whats hot Tasting session” from 3pm to 6pm At Rajendra hall, ITC Grand Chola, Mount Road.  To be part of it please email rashmiudaysingh16@gmail.com and also anjalisharma966@gmail.com, instagram, tweet@rashmiudaysingh hashtag #whatshottastingchennai phone 9884065010. Waitingly yours. Excited to meet you and taste your work. 

Review: ELLIPSIS BAKERY CAFÉ

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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!

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American inspired Artisanal ELLIPSIS BAKERY CAFE.

WHERE THE MAGIC HAPPENS

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Bio rhythmic eating. That’s what I’m learning here in this sensationally beautiful cool, sunny globally famous spa town Baden Baden. Magnetising the international crème de la crème for it’s amazingly effective preventive and detox programs. the renowned Villa Stephanie has a strong medical backbone and brilliant doctors within its premises.That it’s located by the gurgling river and forest of trees and is within kissing distance of the world’s most beautiful casino (Marlene Dietrich), opera house, Rose garden, Roman thermal baths of course adds to it’s charms. But Villa Stephanie is where the magic happens. And it’s the  explanation of the amazing QPNT diet plans by the knowledgeable and charming Fabian Nusser  which is even more riveting. He has shared the recipe of the salmon and horse radish dish, should you need it please email Rashmiudaysingh18@gmail.com

FOR THE BOX (16)
Fabian Nusser At the globally renowned Villa Stephanie.

Review: KALA GHODA CAFÉ & WINE BAR

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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.

FIRST TIME EVER

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He has done it again. Made India proud.

And that too at the most  prestigious and highly coveted World’s 50 best restaurant awards. Gaggan Anand’s Bangkok based restaurant is the only Asian restaurant to be amongst the top five. Here, Spain’s  gastronomique city of Bilbao is buzzing with the global whos who of the food world. Superstar chefs have flown in to attend these three action packed days of feasting, celebrating, deliberating. 50 best talks, Food meets art discussions  and then the grand finale of the awards in the Palacio.

On being crowned worlds best,  the tall, bespectacled passionate, inspired, philosopher genius Massimo Bottura and his lovely wife Lara receive a standing ovation.

Our very own Delhi London NYC based “Indian Accent” was ranked 90.

Powering this gigantic and magnificent global operation is an amazing dream team.  Hailing from different parts of the world, each one is dynamic, creative, efficient and  empathetic. Helmed by Charles Reed,   Tim Brooke Webb,  Helene Pietrini  William Drew who ensure that it is not just the definitive “list maker” of the greatest restaurants, but also the “tastemaker”. They  keep the World’s 50 best continuing be the Best of the best.

FOR THE BOX... (1)
Worlds best Massimo Bottura with Worlds 5th best  Gaggan Anand. Group: Will Drew, Helene Pietrini, Charles Reed, Gaggan, Rajesh Kewalramani Tim Brooke at the World’s 50 best 2018 in Bilbao.