Savour the traditional Bengali Cuisine @ Grand Hyatt, Mumbai

The laughter, the pain, the memories of  Calcutta, the place I know since childhood and those memories will never fade. In every street, you will find something unique and be it food, people, culture etc  is what will make you smile and that’s why it is known as the City of Joy.Once upon a time in Calcutta my old friend Debdas Chatterjee invited me to his wedding but somehow I couldn’t make it since I had late night flight to Bombay. The only regret I had I couldn’t attend the Bengali wedding. It was not just the wedding but I surely missed the traditional Bengali food. Trust me its more than the machi-bhat and rosogulla.

What I love about Bengali food is their use of Panchphoron.Its ideal mixture of five vital flavors, in particular, mustard, fenugreek seed, cumin seed, aniseed, and dark cumin seed.  The forte of Bengali  cuisine lies in the ideal blend  of sweet and fiery flavors. For Bengalis, food is an essential part of their lives. Last week I was invited for Food tasting  @ Grand Hyatt for Maha Bangla Bhoj Festival. I was thrilled when I got the mail and I couldn’t say no this time since it was happening in Mumbai. I met my old food bloggers at the dining.

Chef Partha warmly greeted us at the door. Let me tell you he came all the way  from Kolkata to serve the traditional Bengali food at this fest.  We started off with Chaas (Buttermilk ) given in rustic clay cup. It was refreshing drink  and got a mild taste.  Chef  Partha paid attention to  each preparation and explained us the preparation and few tips on Bengali food.  One huge thali ( earthen plate) where everything is served, this is the tradition in Bengalis they eat everything in one plate (starters, main course, desserts )

Maha bangla bhoj, grand hyatt, chef partha roy, chef amit mondal, bengali food, cuisine, sweets, rosogulla,

Appetizers we had NARKELER BORA, Its is basically a patties with coconut fillings. Its was rich, golden color and perfect to start with. A delight for vegetarians.

Maha bangla bhoj, grand hyatt, chef partha roy, chef amit mondal, bengali food, cuisine, sweets, rosogulla,

                                                        Narkelar Bora

Maha bangla bhoj, grand hyatt, chef partha roy, chef amit mondal, bengali food, cuisine, sweets, rosogulla,

                                         Loochi

For the Main course we tasted  ALU POSTO, the name intrigued me and I asked Chef about the how the dish is prepared.Its potatoes cooked in a mustard gravy and can have it with steam rice or loochi (puri).I would say Quintessential Alu Posto.  Next in line was CHENAR DALNA, Its perfect blend of paneer and cashew nut  and onion gravy. Its one of my favorite dish till date.  It makes the good combination with rice.It’s lip smacking dish.

Maha bangla bhoj, grand hyatt, chef partha roy, chef amit mondal, bengali food, cuisine, sweets, rosogulla,

                                   Chenar Dalna

Maha bangla bhoj, grand hyatt, chef partha roy, chef amit mondal, bengali food, cuisine, sweets, rosogulla,

                                Ghee bhat

Bengali food will never end without the sweets.We were served MANOLOVA NALEN GURER. It is basically malpua served in date jaggery syrup. If you’re a malpua fan, you will definitely love this one. It really makes you craving for more. Bengali sweets cant end without rosogulla.Its soft, perfect sugar syrup mixed well and true Bengali style what I use to eat in Kolkatta.

Maha bangla bhoj, grand hyatt, chef partha roy, chef amit mondal, bengali food, cuisine, sweets, rosogulla,

Manalova nalen gurer malpua

Maha bangla bhoj, grand hyatt, chef partha roy, chef amit mondal, bengali food, cuisine, sweets, rosogulla,

                               Rossogulla

The Maha Bangla Bhoj Fesitval is till 24th Feb  At Grand Hyatt, Soma Restaurant. Don’t miss it  if you are in Mumbai. Come and experience the joy and relish the traditional Bengali cuisine and have the delicious feast with your family.

Foodgasm : The ultimate destination for food lovers

Have you ever thought to eat all your favorites at one place?  Not really?  No? Why not get it with an array of delicious spread over your table with  new stuff. Yes, this is it “ Foodgasm” The Ultimate place for food lovers. The Place you would love to go again and again.. Take my words for it.

Last week I was  invited with the bunch of food bloggers for Dinner preview. Let me tell you I just fell in love with the ambiance as soon as I entered. The Décor is stylish and gives you good vibes.  We settled at one corner table as we were almost 6 bloggers who were ready to take the plunge into the pool of exotic dishes combined with local flavors.

Tally Not: It’s Kokum chia cooler with the signature spice blend. It gives you tangy taste and perfect mixture to start with

 

IMG-20160116-WA0015Hara Pyaaz: The  name itself says it all. It’s creamed onion soup topped with tofu and chives. A very healthy option to try out

IMG-20160116-WA0002Turkish Punjabi: A Turkish gozleme stuffed with spinach, salted feta and mozzarella cheese. It’s one of best starter I had in recent time. It’s simply amazing to taste

IMG-20160116-WA0004Twisted Paani Puri: We all had different types of pain puri till date but this one is going to be very special  not only it has got different flavor such as kalakhatta but also the unique taste that will leave you craving for more. I am definitely going to try it out again

IMG-20160116-WA0009

Main course: Quinoa Biryani: Sounds different isn’t it? Yes, it has got quinoa instead of rice. The tweak is  superb and flavors of biryani and quinoa blends very well.

IMG-20160116-WA0008

Apne khet se : Its an assortment of tandoori cum, thai mushrooms pesto potatoes, malai broccoli and Kesari cauliflower. The wide array of spreads from different farms is awesome. I liked the  pesto potatoes and something different kind of.

IMG-20160116-WA0013

 

I am almost done after having all delicious meal but Chef says to leave some space for last but not the least dish Its ultimate dub smash: Crumbled dark chocolate and whole wheat brownie with vanilla ice cream
image

 

The Foodgasm has a lot to offer and I must say it is a unique of its kind restaurant to serve you  different  flavors with a twist. Its opening on 22nd January 2016. Head over to this awesome place and tickle your taste buds.

 

Exhilarating experience @ Adlabs Imagica

imagica

The  moment you hear about the theme park, your mind gets in a rollercoaster spin thinking about the thrills and rollercoaster rides.. exactly that happened with me. “Are you free this Saturday for Imagica trip ?asked soft spoken lady  on the call. “Are you kidding ?” I said. “No I am serious, “  I asked so what’s the deal?  Wait..wait.. don’t be in hurry  Well.. the story is not yet over…  I packed my bag next morning ie on Saturday  and reached the spot  before I miss the bus.

I entered the excitement mode  as soon as I boarded the BEST bus which in association with Adlabs Imagica started the new bus service.  It was organized by Seatrr and Adlabs Imagica team.  There were 15 bloggers and few Media people accompanying us.The 2 hours long journey went very smooth and enjoyed every gossip and chats with all. As soon as we reached, we were  so fricking excited to get in.  We all were so hungry that we gorged on Burgers and colas.  After that, we started off rides in Nitro, Scream Machine, Mr.India,  D2, etc. We covered almost  all of the rides.

The fun was endless while we were running from one ride to another. The scariest of all was Scream machine.  At one point I thought I will fell down (Thanks to the power belt,  I am alive! )  Lastly we were pleased to see the grand Imagica Parade where all the fictional characters came out dancing and waving to everyone from famous mickey mouse, Cinderella, Tubby, Roberto, Rajasaurus, and Mogambo etc. It was a scintillating experience to witness my childhood heroes. There were extra ordinary performers too.I could see the magic and charm in their eyes. It was a visual treat for everyone.

It was an amazing adventure ride. One of the best memories of 2015.  I was thinking about Seatrr while going home. I read about it somewhere it’s a dish discovery app.  What I liked about this app is Its simplicity. It searches the best restaurants in your area for your burning desire using the rating system for each restaurant.  Even a special dish of the restaurant is suggested so that you can satisfy your hunger pangs.

 

18th dec 6PM

 

Best initiative by Hotel Formule1 – #ChaltaHaiNoMore

hotel formule1, holiday destination, customer service, satisfaction, tourism, travel“Hey  guys,  Its party time lets rock in Goa! “ I immediately told yes to my friend. I could see all my friends were dreaming about it. I was equally thrilled to party in Goa. What could you think better than Goa! Ultimate destination to Party that is closest to Bombay.

Last year I really had an unpleasant experience while I staying in Goa. Well, it was an impromptu decision to go to Goa. We just packed our bags one night and breezed out in the morning. No travel plans. Only in my mind was to Enjoy life! We finally managed to reach Goa next day and found a hotel to stay but here starts the nasty stuff. Well, knowing tourist are treated as God’s guest. But here you are taken for granted.

Let me tell you guys the Hotel we were staying had no wifi. In an internet age, it very hard to imagine but Yes, it’s a true fact. The guy at the receptionist told “Sir Chala lo Aaj ka din” The worst was yet to come. There was no Hot water provided.  We don’t expect great customer service, but bare minimum standards to keep the customer satisfied.Rather than spending so much money on marketing, paid advertising, spend 1/4th of our money in customer experience. It is really an investment in your brand.

hotel formule1, holiday destination, customer service, satisfaction, tourism, travel

Great customer service doesn’t only put a smile on the customer’s face, it not only helps you understand your customer but also define your brand and impacts your bottom line. I was going through One of the travel websites where I found this interesting video  by Hotel formule1 is a unique initiative and drive by Hotel Formule1 to highlight just that.

 

Hotel Formule1, a Rest Assured hotel by world’s leading hotel operator Accor, is renowned for delivering a great sleep and shower experience. It is the first hotel brand in India filling the void for standardized comfort and convenience. The hotel also offers complimentary Wi-Fi to its guests. The rooms are cleverly designed and more stylish. It is a great value stay combined with quality service and facilities.

This is the best initiative by Hotel Formule1.So shed your Chalta Hai attitude and say #ChaltaHaiNoMore

Home-made Kutchi Dabeli Recipe

Dabeli is one of my favorite street food .It originated basically in Kutch district, Gujarat and it is also popularly known as Kutchi Dabeli Every corner of the street food in Mumbai you will find Dabeli stalls now.

Home made kutchi dabeli

Why Dabeli is so popular? It has got a  spicy and tangy taste– with Potato fillings in  Pav ( Indian bread)  layered with a sweet chutney and with dabeli stuffing , sprinkled  pomegranate, grapes, onions and sev and masala groundnuts.

I tried my hands on making Dabeli at home. Check out my Home-made Dabeli recipe

Recipe : –

Making the dabeli masala:

  • Dry roast the red chili, cumin, cloves, cinnamon and coriander seeds etc
  • Add all the ingredients in a dry grinder.
  • Grind to fine powder

 

Making of Sweet Chutney :

Boil 50 gm Tamarind and make 2 glass of water.

  1. 1 glass of tamarind water
  2. 4-5 spoon of Oil
  3. Red chili powder
  4. 100 gm sugar
  5. Dabeli masala
  6. Asafetida (hing)

Heat Oil on a dry pan and add 2 teaspoon red chilli powder , 1 spoon of turmeric, 1 pinch of asafetida(hing) , 1 spoon of Salt and mix it in Oil and add 1 glass of tamarind water . When the water boils then add 100 gm of Sugar then add 1 table spoon of dabeli masala

Home made kutchi dabeli,sweet chutney

To make chutney thick, add mash of potato in it .Now your sweet chutney is ready

Making of Garlic Chutney

8-10 garlic strips add to normal water add 2 spoons of red chilli powder and salt to taste  then grind it and Garlic chutney is ready

 Home made kutchi dabeli,sweet chutney, garlic chutney

Making potato fillings :

  1. ½ kg potato
  2. 50 gm tamarind
  3. 8-10 garlic half strips
  4. Dabeli masala
  5. Red chilli powder
  6. Turmeric powder
  7. Salt

 

Boil the potatoes in a pressure cooker. Fist peel and mash them and keep aside.

Heat 4-5 spoons of Oil in a pan or kadai then add , 2 spoons-red chilli powder, ½ spoon – Turmeric powder and pinch of hing, salt to taste , add 1 glass of tamarind water . After water gets boil then add 50 gm sugar in it. Add 1 table spoon Dabeli masala ,stir it well then add mashed potato in it

Home made kutchi dabeli,sweet chutney, garlic chutney

Now your sweet chutney, garlic chutney , potato fillings is ready

Home made kutchi dabeli,sweet chutney, garlic chutney

Spread the potato filling on a plate, add pomegranate seeds or grapes, pineapple slices etc to decorate with grated coconut on top of it add some chopped onion and coriander leaves and add masala groundnuts

home-made dabeli, masala groundnut, street food

Home made kutchi dabeli,sweet chutney, garlic chutney,dabeli pav

Note – You can use specially dabeli pav available in the market else normal pav will do. Slice  the normal pav diagonally from middle so that mashed potato  is filled up adequately. And then heat oil on a pan and fry it for 1-2 mins on a low flame.

Home made kutchi dabeli,sweet chutney, garlic chutney,dabeli pav

 

home-made dabeli, masala groundnut, street food, kutchi dabeliHope you like it Sweet and tasty home-made Dabeli

 

 

 

Flavors of Mexico Food Festival

Flavors of Mexico food Mexican cuisine is one of the most lively and entrenched traditions in the world. Chillies and Avocado are most often used  ingredients in Mexican food.  Why Mexico has  rich culinary tradition?  Not only it is made of fresh ingredients but also Mexican spices produces authentic flavors. Chef Guillermo Favela came all the way from Dubai Creek to savour the Mexican cuisine. He brings the variety of Mexican gastronomy  and wealth of indigenous ingredients  of Mexican cuisine.  I really wanted to try  tacos, tamales, nachos, salads, and freshly made salsa.

Definitely #Vivamexicana is an extravaganza spread with exquisite dishes of Mexican haute cuisine.

Mexican Food cuisine

I just loved the quesadilla which is a wheat tortilla or a corn tortilla filled with a savoury mixture with exotic vegetables, cooked on a griddle, then folded in half to form a half-moon shape. It really tastes amazing with the smoked sausage. Basically Quesadillas in Mexico are made using only one folded Tortilla. If the Tortilla is a flour tortilla and is not folded then it is called a “Gringa”. If you use two no folded Tortillas then it is called Sincronizadas.If you use one crisp corn tortilla then it is called Tostada.

Mexican Food cuisine

Chef always made us feel comfy and explained the dishes in details like the ingredients used, preparation time etc We had wide options in Burritos, Tostadas, Enchiladas and Quesidilla….All the dishes were luscious.

Mexican Food cuisine

I love the Taco fillings which is unique in taste and leave you craving for more. The Indian love the Mexican food very much. Both cuisines have got striking similarities. The Mexican rice  was the absolute delicious with combination of cumin, chilli and oregano. It was my favorite Mexican dish.

Mexican Food cuisine

Chef Guillermo Favela, Mexican food, festival

                                        Chef Guillermo Favela

My Verdict : Enjoy all the Mexican fare has to offer with traditional dishes during the ongoing festival #VivaMexican at Hyatt Regency Mumbai

Food- 4/5

Décor- 3.5/5

Service- 4/5

The Glenlivet Founder’s Reserve Launch

IMG_20151106_213322079

The launch of new single malt, The Glenlivet’s Founder reserve had everything needed to make a perfect evening of literature and music. The Founder’s Reserve is a new addition to the family of The Glenlivet single malts. Alex Robertson, Brand Ambassador of Glenlivet’s gave us brief introduction and history about the Glenlivet and led the tasting of Founder’s reserve.

IMG_20151106_213539680

alex robertson,Glenlivet Founder's reserveThe new whisky has been crafted by Alan Winchester, the Master Distiller at The Glenlivet, and is designed to pay homage to the style of whisky created by the distillery’s founder George Smith.  It has been matured predominantly in first-fill American oak ex-bourbon casks.

alex robertson,Glenlivet Founder's reserve
Let ‘s go back in time.The Glenlivet distillery is located in the Speyside region, close to the town of Ballindalloch in the scenic Livet Glen from which it takes its name. As mentioned the distillery was founded in 1824 by George Smith, whose signature still appears on the labels and packaging. It was the first distillery in the Speyside region granted a distilling license under the Parliamentary Excise Act, which was brought in one year earlier. Glenlivet is now one of Scotland’s largest distilleries with an annual production of 10 million litres and is currently owned by Pernod Ricard, who took control in 2001.

It is the most popular single malt in the USA, where it has been number one since the 1970s, and this market accounts for nearly 50% of all sales of The Glenlivet.

glenlivet founder reserve

The launch was preceded by book reading session by Vikram Sheth to epitomize the new product’s philosophy.

We were introduced to Glen Livet Founder’s Reserve,18 YO,12 YO. I liked the Glenlivet Founder’s reserve it is pale, golden yellow in color and the Nose is fresh, vibrant and delicate aromas of citrus fruits and lots of vanilla in the background.The palate is  fresh and vigorous with a hint of green apple and pear. It is well balanced. Finish is long, creamy and exceptionally smooth.

glenlivet founder reserve

Later on The Glenlivet Legacy tasting followed by Dinner that was carefully crafted by the Chef.

Salad of Red beet, chevre center with caramelized walnut, avocado, cress greens, ligurian walnut oil paired with Glenlivet

Salad of Red beet, chevre center with caramelized walnut, avocado, cress greens, Ligurian walnut oil paired with The Glenlivet 15YO

Spring vegetables in soy butter noisette, confit heirloom tomato

Spring vegetables in soy butter noisette, confit heirloom tomato

Trilogy of wild mushrooms, yellow foot chanterellas, mascarpone risotto, boletus foam paired with The Glenlivet 18YO

Trilogy of wild mushrooms, yellow foot chanterelles, mascarpone risotto, boletus foam paired with The Glenlivet 18YO

The Founder’s Reserve is a new age expression in the range of The Glenlivet single malt. It was wonderful soirée with Love, Laughter and lots of Whisky.