Review

Recipe: SUN & MOON

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Sometimes a restaurant experience extends to  more than just the food.  It’s drawbacks become it’s charms… its tiny home-style space, its one man service,  generous portions of the Korean owner-chef Sun’s (not sure if I’ve got her name right) blazing lustily spiced food.

Read my review in today’s Bombay Times.

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Checking out SUN AND MOON with Ashmit Patel, Nina and Prakash Vasa.
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SEOUL FOOD

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Lights. Camera.Eat. So what if its    minus two degrees in the Korean capital of Seoul. Here, on the TV set, under the bright lights, its sizzling hot. And what better way to learn about Korean food than  from the maestro,  70 year young, legendary actress and chef Soomi Kim? And to be invited to cook and shoot on the sets of her hugely popular TV show. Superstar chef Hyun Seok Choi  teaches me more fundamentals as does Jin Pyo Kim the mover and shaker of Seoul’s restaurant scene. All thanks to Jung Yum Choi Im  learning how to make “kimchi” the traditional way. And tomorrow driving four hours to the mountains to the celebrated Buddhist monks monastery. To get her blessings and to eat her vegetarian food. Cant wait to learn from her how to make vegetarian kimchi. Need recipes? Please email rashmiudaysingh18@gmail.com

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Filming and tasting: Korean superstarchefs, Soomi Kim,  Chef Hyun Seok Choi  and Jin Pyo Kim. 

Review: BOMBAY VINTAGE

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“… yeh hai Bombay meri jaan”the old hindi song echoed in my ears, when I lunched at Bombay Vintage. It did so  not just because I was lunching at a restaurant which serves up Bombay’s melting pot cuisines but even more because of my lovable guests (one was my #foodieblinddate) .

Read my full review in today’s Bombay Times.

BOMBAY VINTAGE
FAB FOODIES Aaditya Bhatt, flanked by Utkarsha Kesarkar and Jumana Hufeza Electricwala.

 

HEALTHY SECRETS

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It’s been my lifelong quest…to find the secret of how to to dine non-stop gourmet and yet stay healthy. To continue to enjoy all tastes and flavours, to be able to digest it all and then go back for more. I wrote a weekly health column for a national daily for fifteen years. Produced, scripted, directed, presented 52 episodes of a health show on TV and through it all spent lots of time with doctors, specialists, ayurvedacharyas, nutritionists and more. And it was a common consensus, the source of health and energy was the digestive system. And to keep this system working in top form, it was essential to eat healthy (of course) but also to have probiotics. Not too fond of popping pills (even if they are probiotics in a pill) I was thrilled to find the answer. Right here. In Chennai. A home-made solution…Read on to know more

DID YOU KNOW?

Of course, we  all know about probiotics and how essential they are to supply the much needed good bacteria into the system. But did you know…?

They have positive effects on the body like improving immunity, detoxifying the system, reducing inflammation, improving digestion, and providing the body with bio- available nutrients, vitamins and enzymes?  Energy improves, stress, joint pains, allergies reduce?

 Did you know that probiotics are found in delicious edible drinkable forms?

Ginger ale,  Kombucha, Milk Kefir, Beet Kvass,  Sauerkraut, Korean Kimchi, Hummus to name some.

And here’s the good news, these yummies are being made at home, right here in Chennai by the entrepreneurial Abha Appasamy  “I  started this for our own family to keep them in good health and we found that we were not catching colds and infections as long as we were taking them”. She explains.

that ginger ale is her latest and most popular product, and has had dramatic effects on some of her friends’ digestive issues. It is fermented with the natural bacteria present in organic ginger.

Abha’s Probiotics includes traditional fermented foods and drinks that have originated in countries around the world and

She personally make all the products and bottle them too to ensure high quality and food safety.

She ensures that all her products are 100% vegetarian and vegan (except for milk kefir.. )Natural, with no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.

and made from organic ingredients bought from reliable sources (  not exposed to chemical fertilizers, pesticides or hormones.)

 All packaged in eco-friendly, recyclable glass bottles too.

Lets raise a toast with a glass of probiotic ginger ale!

abhasprobiotics@gmail.com WhatsApp: 9962575684

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Abha Appasamy and her home made power packed probiotics.

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HEALTHY SNACKING  

If you love to munch and snack…but feel the need to do so healthily then Pratima Manikandan’s ingenious bars and crackers are the answer, as her quinoa Digestive Biscuits and Naan Khatai.

Go for the  energy bars, made of natural sugars with  a low glycemic index… made of seeds, nuts and dryfruits.

Energy Bars made of Millet and walnut seeds, nuts, berries, millets and natural sugars to bring together a nutritious snack on the go. Ask for   Millet and Orange,

 Vanilla and cinnamon flavors. All sweetened with the super healthy dates.

I love biting into the wafer thin, savory seed crackers made entirely of seeds and nuts.

That theyre a powerhouse of Omega 3 and 6 is a bonus.

Naan Khatai, made of wheat flour and brown sugar make them extra healthy and thankfully extra yummy too.  Quinoa Digestive Biscuits- Packed with the essential amino acids  are a must try.

Prathima Manikandan

A-218, Bhaggyam Urban Ville,

Industrial Estate Road,

Thoraipakkam,

ph: 7358306633/044 48536641

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Prathima Manikandan s unique home made seed crackers and energy bars.

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WHATSHOT HOME-BAKER TASTING SESSIONS

I maybe traveling the world but I always circle back to Chennai. Ive been flying in from Mumbai and setting up “whats hot tasting sessions” past 15 years. And with each session I get even more impressed

Infact, in EACH AND EVERY COLUMN there is a local “Foodline” with the latest on Chennai’s home catering and baking as my Chennai based assistant Anjali keeps a tab and has been doing so for over 15 years. We held the last one in ITC Grand Chola , which is where I tasted the probiotics and seedcrackers made by Abha and Prathima. Should you wish to take part in the next whatshot tasting session please mail rashmiudaysingh18@gmail.com, anjalisharma966@gmail.com

FRESHNESS REDEFINED

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Sure! I have dined in the gourmet capitals’ worlds best restaurants but this is the first time that I’m getting a taste of freshness redefined. Here under the stunningly vivid blue sky nestled in the north west coast of the beautiful Mauritius island is “On the rocks”  Here the brilliant chef Igor Bochia  conjures his simply superb and superbly simple magic. Freshest of fish, be it the Dorado, tuna or  red snapper is grilled on the table, right in front of each diner. The sporty and sporting Nishal Seebaluck points out that their luxurious landmark not only specializes in food but also in water sports, snorkelling, scuba diving and more.  They also serve up gourmet omakase Japanese, authentic Mauritian and Creole tasting menus,  Superb Italian and Indian too. Cooking classes as well as Mauritian rum tasting classes. I raise a toast to the exquisite “On the Rocks” with the finest local rum…served up only on ice… on the rocks of course!

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Memorable meal ON THE ROCKS: with Chef Igor Bochia and Nishal Seebaluck.

Review: RIVAAZ

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Rivaaz tucked into a four star hotel surprises with  it’s robust and tasty Moghlai fare and it’s generous portions and affordable pricing (average meal for two Rs 1200). Should you happen to be in the vicinity… it s a must visit.

Read my full review on whatshot.in

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At RIVAAZ: lunching with Mansoor H Matani  and Feroze Mistry. 

Recipe: Cartagenian style beef with Temptation plantain and coconut rice

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WAITER, THERE’S A COLA IN MY FOOD

Unusual! Unique! First time ever! I taste a dish cooked in a cola. It has a strangely uplifting and cheering effect…much like the internationally renowned song “waka waka” (sung by the Colombian Shakira). This dish is her favorite…as is mine.  It has a memorable deliciousness that ricochets on my taste buds, pampers my senses and stays in my memory forever. And the interesting part is that it is not a funky, innovation or modern fusion dish, it’s a traditional  South American dish from Colombia’s beautiful, ancient walled city of Cartagena. And I taste it in the stunningly beautiful Legend of Santa Clara. It dates back to 1621 when it was a convent. Even now, every evening, there is the candle lighting ceremony done by the monks.  Here history, lives and breathes and then dapper Richard Launay who helms this landmark ensures that  along with high-tech all traditions are preserved. Nobel prize winning author Garcia Marquez has written an award winning book on the Legend of St Clara. Not only does the brilliant chef  Dominique Oudin cook up this dish but also shares the recipe with me. And it’s only on checking around and doing my research that I find out that many a president, royalty, Bill Gates and even the internationally renowned singer Shakira (shot into fame with Waka Waka) is not only a Colombian but also a regular at Legend of Santa Clara and this dish along with Arripas huevos (egg in a corn batter)  is a favourite of hers.

It has a long name and it s a dish composed of beef (cooked in a cola) plaintain and coconut rice. It has a masterful balance of flavours (savory and a kiss of sweet).

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Tasting Posts Negra with  chef Dominique  Oudin and Richard Launay in The Legend of Santa Clara.
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Internationally renowned Colombian Singer Shakira’s favourite dish.

 

Posta negra Cartagenera, con platano en tentación y arroz de coco 

“Cartagenian style beef with Temptation plantain and coconut rice”.

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Traditional Colombian Post Negra  dish cooked with a cola. 

Serves six

Posta negra 

       1

1.5 kg     beef  

350 g      white onion

350 g      carrot

1 clove    garlic

5 branches of  thyme 

40    cloves

20    whole pepper

1 stick     cinnamon

 580g       brown sugar 

 1.5 Litrescoke

 3 Lts       water

 14g  salt

 20 ml      vegetable oil

 

 Method

Take the beef meat, and clean it. Put half of the salt. Clean the vegetables and cut them in thick cubes. 

In a frying pan, heat up the oil and seared the meat on all sides. Clean the pan with coke and add all the ingredients and the water. 

Cook slowly for about 3 hours according the size of the meat.

Remove the beef. Sift the sauce and verify the flavors.

 

PLATANO EN TENTACIÓN 

“ Temptation plantain”

 

       6     ripped plantain

       450ml     Sweet cola (our icecream soda)

       150ml     water 

       100gr      sugar

       1 stick     whole cinammon

       10 Ud     cloves

        

Method  

Remove the skin from the plantain and cut it in 4 pieces.

In a bowl add all the ingredients, and put the plantain in the mix.

In a sauce pan cook the plantains with the mix and let it cook in low until you get a caramel liquid.

 

Arroz de coco 

Coconut rice

I have the coconut rice recipe with me, should you need it please email rashmiudaysingh18@gmail.com

To serve:

Cut the beef in thin slices and wash with hot  sauce. 

Serve with coconut rice and ”temptation plantain”.

 

LEGENDARY DINNER

As much as I trip out on the traditional beef stew (recipe above) I could with equal joy write poems to avocado weds mango to black garlic weds beef and treetomato weds langoustine.All in Colombia finest legend SantaClara s 1621. And that too by brilliant 27 year young chef Andres Segura .
Brilliant marriage of 
Avocado with the fresh tartness of green mango in a crazily addictive Cold avocado and ginger soup with Sousvide Lobster tail. The degustation dinner of modern Colombian cuisine dazzles.

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Chef Andrea Segura and the avocado mango masterpiece.

 

FRUITS OF LEARNING

My learning continues the next morning over the legendary breakfast… where chef Oudin escorts me through the authentic Colombian street food stalls… I even watch each dish being made. From the most popular 

“patacon” plantain deep fried,

“Arripa de huevo” egg in a corn batter to the superb, freshly brewed Colombian coffee.

And through it all the colorful

“palanquera” in her traditional dress sparkles the breakfast room. The palanqueras are the traditional fruit sellers. So I bite into the juiciest freshest fruit and keep learning too. Having my fruit and eating it too!!!

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Chef Oudin and the Palanquera. 

MY BEST-EVER FOODIE BLIND DATE

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No two ways about it. They’re  indispensable. They’re my guiding lights: they take me off the eaten path. They plug me into the insider foodie pulse of the city they live in. Mumbai, New York, Dubai, Hong Kong , Berlin, Paris and now my very latest…Los Angeles. And of course, they’re fabulous fun. I refer to my #FoodieBlinddates which i’ve been going on past 3 decades. Now, with Instagram and twitter, its simple I just post that I’m visiting a city and invite Blind dates. Pre-social media days too, along with my column I had a phone answering machine and went on many a fab foodie blind-date.  

Till date my best every foodie blind date was my most recent in Los Angles. Three gorgeous powerhouses of energy and foodie information guided me to two amazing great value for money restaurants… Pizzana and Destroyer. Big time international food influencer, Kaitlin   travels around the world as a TasteHunter. We lunch, munch and
and dance in  Chef Daniele Uditi’s awesome pizzas…the best in LA. 

Caitlin Sakdalan who lives bi-coastally between NYC and California shares her info on FAT (food and travel.) Jesse Hsu, Wedding Dancer.
documents food, chefs, and stories with his camera And Chef Daniele Uditi’s  Italain food dazzles. We go on to eat  to The Destroyer…but that’s another yummy story.

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My Fab foodie blind dates in Pizzana, L.A. Kaitlin, Caitlin, Jesse and chef Daniele.

Review: Asian Town

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The rise and the rise of Asian cuisine; that’s the one trend that continues to dominate our restaurantscape. Not only have I tracked it over the past three decades in Mumbai but have recently watched it internationally too.

Read my full review on whatshot.in

Asian Town
ASIAN TOWN: with gourmets extraordinaire Laveena and Sajjid Mitha.