July 10, 2015

Hilsa Festival Preview at Buzz, The Gateway, Kolkata

Festival - Hilsa Festival

Venue - Buzz, The Gateway Kolkata
Date - 10th July'15 to 26th July'15

Serving typeÀ la carte

Timing
Lunch : 1230 hrs to 1500 hrs
Dinner : 1930 hrs to 2300 hrs
Pocket Pinch - Meals for two, approx.INR 1500, inclusive of taxes (The price is based on main course items)

My recommendation: Ilish Pulao, Ilish Pithe, Doi 
Ilish & Smoked Hilsa
With the welcoming note of the Monsoon season, our home atmosphere got quite festive when the Man came after the morning shopping chore from the local market and announced with an elated smile:  "Ilish eshe gachhe" (Hilsa has come). The family members like a greedy child with salivated mouth sat down to decide the recipe that would do justice to the Hilsa/ Ilish fish for that day. My FIL with a gleeful joy started reciting a poem. Its a very old bengali poem what my FIL said. He had forgotten the title and the writer's name. But the gist of the poem what I understood is:
An old lady was all set to start her religious tour. Just at the moment she was leaving one of her relatives gave a surprise visit carrying "Jora Ilish" ( Previously people used to buy pair of Ilish). That lady without wasting any time cancelled her tour and sat down to cook Hilsa/ Ilish and enjoyed every bite of it.
 Thus Bengalies are that much carzy when it comes to Hilsa/Ilish. Though it is the national fish of Bangladesh, West Bengal would die for it. This is the one fish which can be cooked in various way. 

Team KFB reached Buzz on an invitation from Taj Gateway to sample the menu of the Hilsa Festival
Special thali for the tasting session.
that has started from today and will continue till 26th July'15. Buzz, the hotel restaurants of The Gateway Hotel has become famous for presenting the "Purbo Bangla/Opar Bangla" or the East Bengal delicacies along with the continental dainties. They never fail to celebrate the core Bengali festivals through their delicious delicacies. And to make sure they bring out the traditional regional dishes mostly from East Bengal and partially of the west Bengal. As the Monsoon knocks the door and the local fish market is flooding with Hilsa, Buzz without wasting any time organised the Hilsa Festival for the Hilsa Lovers with some traditional Bengali dishes from the both sides of Bengal. Thanks to Chef Ashish Roy, who took out his precious time and explained us each and every dish, like how they cooked, why they kept the dish in the menu etc. Now let us take a tour through the dishes that were designed specially for the Hilsa Festival.

What you will get in the Menu:
Starter
{Per dish INR 550 }
Shukno Lanka Peyaj Diye Ilish Bhaja
Block of Ilish fried in churned mustard oil with dried chilies and slices of baby onion
Ilish Pithe
Boneless Ilish stuffed in savoury dough and deep fried. This was the take of the day and highly recommended. Dhaka, Bangladesh specialises and is famous for the sweet and savoury Pithe. Among the the savoury one Ilish Pithe is one of the signature delicacies of Dhaka. 
{Picture Courtesy: Vishal Tupper}
Main Course
{Per dish INR 650 comes along with steamed rice, except Smoked Hilsa}
Narkol Diye Ilisher Paturi (Boneless)
Boneless Hilsa marinated with coconut and the steamed inside banana leaf. Paturi needs no introduction. Check any festive occasion  Paturi is a must added dish to the menu. And if it comes to the Hilsa season the menu goes incomplete without Hilsa/Ilish Paturi.
Ilish Mishti Kumror Jhol
Chef's special peparation cooked in iron griddle with the red pumkin and ground spices.

Ilish Pulao
Hilsa cooked in dum along with the finest hand-picked rice. Slowly cooked in the Hilsa fish stock the dish tasted heavenly. I have tasted Ilish Pulao in many famous food joints, but every where I found a kind of fishy smell dominating the dish. So I kept this dish out of my menu after that. But here to my surprise after tasting it, I didn't get that small rather I had fallen in love with it. So do try it.

Doi Ilish
Classical preparation with hung curd and churned mustard oil. This is another dish which I will highly recommend to try. Goes perfect with the white rice and also with Hilsa/ Ilish Pulao.

{Picture Courtesy: Vishal Tupper}

Smoked Hilsa
A western twist - fillet of boneless hilsa smoked with jasmine rice, honey and a dash of pommery - served with garlic bread. We all had fallen in love at one bite. Soft, creamy melted in mouth hilsa fillet that gives an out most sumptuous experience when you taste it. This dish is specially cooked keeping in mind for the international customers who will get the taste of the queen fish of Bengal with a continental touch up.
Apart from these Shorshebata Ilish (A classical recipe - Hilsa cooked in Mustard based gravy) and Kalojeera Begun diye Tel Jhal (A home style cooked dish with aubergine and tempered with kalonji/ nigella seeds). Hope those readers will enjoy the Hilsa Festival at  Buzz, The Gateway, Kolkata.

Happy Eating....


July 2, 2015

Cherry Banana Bread

Feeling like it has been a decade. Yes I am blogging after almost 7 months. The main reason was my health and the new addition to the family. I was blessed with my second daughter 2 months back and surprisingly both my girls were born on the same date. I didn't have any complications except an uncomfortable back pain which totally restricted me to sit with my laptop. Otherwise I was pretty flexible with long walks and doing all the daily chores. In fact this time I was hardly get any time to think of myself since I had to keep myself fully busy with the elder one. But my only concern was to keep my diet healthy. Only the last month restricted my movement. I had a risk of water breakage which led me to confine myself at home for almost 3 weeks. And then the baby arrived and made our life happy. Lil K wished for a sister and she was gifted a sister on her Birthday. So she was more than happy as we were. She is a doting "DIDI" to her baby sis - very protective and concerned about her each and every movement. And thus we spent 2 months and my darlings were growing together making our each and every day from brighter to brightest.
From this year Lil K's school hours got extended from 4 to 6 hours. This made me tensed, worried and forced me to spend some sleepless nights. The main concern was what to give in her lunch box. Lil K is a picky eater when it comes to her tiffin. She hardly eats anything and I get the lunch box returned almost full. So every day I have to go for a brainstorming session to add something new to her lunch box which can satiate my princess's taste bud. I was always very sceptical using bananas in my bakes. I have never tasted any so was totally unsure about the fact what would be the outcome. But again the passionate baker inside me forced me try this recipe. I have bookmarked it long back. This time I thought of executing it crossing my fingers if by any chance my luck favours. And to my surprise not only I but Lil K and all the family members appreciated a lot. It happily adorned the lunchbox and the box came home empty.  So here is the recipe Cherry Banana Bread..
{Note: I was pretty surprised why a recipe that could be easily justified as a cake, named after a bread. Then a few read made me understand that since were baking it in a bread loaf pan, it was therefore considered as a bread, nothing else. }
{Recipe adapted from HERE}
Ingredients
Ripe bananas – 2 -3 medium size (approx 1 cup mashed)
Butter – 4 tbs (room temperature)
Hung Curd – ¼ cup
Brown sugar – ¾ cup
Egg - 1
Vanilla essence- 1 tsp

Flour - 1 cup
Baking soda – 1tsp
Baking powder – ½ tsp
Salt – ½ tsp

Cherry – 10-12
Flour – 2 tbs
Chocolate chips – ½ cup
Chopped Cashew nuts – ¼ cup
Method
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade for 7-8 minutes.
  2.  Peel and mash the bananas.
  3. In a mixing bowl pour the sugar. Add the bananas and mix well unless the sugar blends nicely. Add the egg and mix. 
  4. Then slowly pour the hung curd and add the vanilla essence. Mix until well combined.
  5. In a separate container combine nicely the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Do not over mix.
  6. Slowly add the flour mixture to the banana mixture and mix well but do not over mix.
  7. Add the chocolate chips and the cashews nuts.
  8. Seed and slice the cherries and fold them in 2 tbs flour and add them gently to the mixture. Again do not over mix.  .
  9. Grease and flour a 9'x 5' loaf pan and then pour the mixture in it.
  10. bake it for for 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool it completely and then serve. It tastes better when it is served chill.                                                              
Note:
1. After it gets cool one can keep the bread outside for a day, depending on the temperature. Otherwise suggested to refrigerate and consumed within 3-4 days.
2. It tastes better when it is served chill.

December 24, 2014

Christmas delicacy: Chocolate Bavarian cast Blueberry topped Cheese Cake

I am totally slogging with my blogging career. Career Passion I must say that once used give me the solace in life. I am not getting my mojo back to sit and go through this thoughtful  process where I can pour down my heart out and share the experiences of my life with my readers. It is very hard to get back in  a creative world after a long  gap or break. Everyday I try to take out some time out for my blog, but the hectic schedule of life  makes my brain and mind totally idle to run the intellectual  thought process to work. Anyways after a long time I came for a vacation to a serene place where the chilling  winter  season is kissing the nature all around me. I am sitting under the warm sunlight and roasting my body to get all the warmth to make the chilling cold sooth out the limbs. Lovely colourful vibrant flowers are full bloomed all around me and singing a song of romance that I missed for so many years. The romance with nature that was once my young hood fascination and puff, without whom I used to see my future totally doomed and dead. But life keeps on moving and I am still alive and quite happy with the city life, may be because I hardly get time to think about myself, some time out from the hectic lifestyle. 
Anyways let us not spoil this festive season mood with this mundane talks. Let us cheer to welcome Santa, wish all Merry Christmas and a prosperous Happy New year. At the same time I am also celebrating my 200th posts. And what is the better way to welcome it with some delicious and scrumptious heavenly delicacy!! Enjoy  the  Chocolate Bavarian cast Blueberry topped Cheese Cake which is no doubt  going to be a winner above all dishes.
Ingrdients
Cheese Cake
Cream Cheese: 1 packet (I used Philadelphia -room temperature )
Egg: 2 (room temperature )
Powdered Sugar: 1 cup
Vanilla Essence: 1 tsp
Oreo Biscuit:  Crushed 1 cup
Butter: 1tbsp (Melted)

Blue Berry preserve: 1 cup

Bavarian Cream:
Milk- 1/4 cup
Chocolate: 1 cup
Heavy Cream: 1 cup (Amul cream will also do the tetra pack one)
Gelatin: 1tbsp
Egg yolk- 2

Bottom loose Cake tins/ Spring foam pans:
5" - 1
6" - 1
 Method:
 1. Beat the cream cheese until its soft. Add sugar beat nicely.
  1. Add the egg one at time. Blend nicely. Add Vanilla essence.
  2. Pre heat the oven at 160 degree Celsius.
  3. Mix the oreo and butter nicely and then line on the 5" loose bottomed cake tin. Bake for 3-4 minutes.
  4. Pour the mixture in the oreo crust and bake for 30-40 mnts at 150 degree C or till a tooth pick pricked in the cake comes out clean.
  5. Take it out and leave it to cool down.
  6. Pour the Blue Berry preserve on the top. Put in the refrigerator for at list 1-2 hours.
  7. Slowly take the cake out from the cake tin and  put it very carefully in the 6 " pan.

Chocolate Bavarian Cream:
  1. Add gelatin to the milk and set aside.
  2. Heat the cream and melt the chocolate in it. Remove from the heat and whisk the egg yolks in it until it blends in a smooth texture. Put it again on heat and keep on whisking continuously so that the egg should not curdled up or leaves any lumps. Cook it for 3-4 mnts then remove from the heat.
  3. Add the gelatin in the mixture whisk it and then pour it on the top of the cheese cake.  Refrigerate overnight for better result. Then cut and serve and enjoy the festive season.

Wish you all Merry Christmas and a prosperous Happy New year...
This is off to the KFB Christmas Spl Event:

November 16, 2014

Pan Roasted Soy Honey Glazed Chicken


Resuming blogging almost after three months. When you are on a break then it becomes a tedious job to get back on track. My lazy soul needed a lot of boost ups from my friends and family and then here is the result. When you are surrounded by some good souls how your life can be unhappy. They are like the fairies of one's life who can drive away all the glumness away from you. Yes I am one of the blessed souls in this earth who by any chance got these fairies around her. 
There are so many things to share with you all - the experiences of the last three months. Ah, I need few serene hours to nurture the thoughts in my mind and then to pour the heart out here. Yes I truly missed blogging in the past few months. But one the reasons is, I was pretty confused with my blogging carrier too. I will come with my thought in my next to next post till then enjoy the dish that I made yesterday night. And I swear it came out so tasty. I highly recommend all of you to please give it a try and then Oh yes don't forget to give me your feedback.
Ingredients:
Chicken Leg Full- 5 pcs
Dark Soy Sauce- 1/2 cup
Honey - 1/4 cup
Lemon Juice - 3 tbsp
Juice from Garlic & Ginger paste - 3 tbspn
Salt as per taste

Oil - 2 tbspn
Method-

  1. Slit the flesh of the  Chicken legs so that the juice can go inside.
  2. Marinade for at least 3-4 hrs with everything listed under the ingredient section.
  3. Take a non-stick pan. Heat the oil.
  4. Now strain out the chicken pieces from the marinated sauce and put it in a Plate. Please reserve the sauce.
  5. I roasted three pieces first and then the other two in the next batch. So put three Chicken leg pieces in the pan, put a lid and cook in low flame for at least 10+10 minutes both side.  In between keep on adding the sauce in a very small amount.
  6. When the chicken is almost cooked add more than half of the sauce in the pan and cook in high flame unless the sauce thickens and the both sides of the chicken gets coated nicely with the dark soy look.
  7.  Take it out form the pan and plate it with desired assortments. Do the same thing with the second batch of the chicken.

August 8, 2014

Chicken Hotdog Stuffed Buns

  The morning of Kolkata is totally different as it looks in  the busy hours.  It is beautiful, serene and romantic. Less number of vehicles on the road and less crowded. Almost no honking - the morning always weaves a different story. My daily route to romance with the morning is passing by  the Rabindra Sarobar, Southern Avenue, Gol  Park then the Gariahaat Crossing to Kashba. The morning fresh breeze brushes my hair, kisses my face with a tender touch.  I keep on inhaling the fresh breath to store it for the whole day as much as I can before another side of Kolkata faces off pretty fast soon. Surprisingly I get to hear the birds chirping when I pass through the grovy and bushy lanes of Southern Avenue. I see all the young & old  on the road taking the pleasure of a morning walk. Some relaxing on a "Cutting Chai" or sipping hot tea in a Khuri ( small container made out of clay especially for serving tea in Bengal) or some drinking coconut water.  You will see the JhaNkawala Shabjiwala/ Folwala (The vendors who sell fruits/vegetables in a basket) busy in selling their stuffs to the morning passersby and with a hope in their eyes to gain profit as much as they can for the day.  Some devotees will be seen busy in enchanting the Mantras in front of Lake Kalibari. Whoever crosses through the road they will surely slow down their cars to show their respect and faith for god in front of the Temple.  A small and quick salutation will be seen touching the forehead then the chest and again regaining the speed to race with the traffic. I love this lane though I hate so many cars are parked blocking a lane. But here I get to see different kinds of busy morning and people where people are busy in relaxation. They are enjoying their morning walks or chatting with their everyday walking partners or laughing aloud on some jokes.  My car passes by and I keep on watching and storing all the stories of the different Kolkata lanes and the different scenarios in the weekdays. The Gariahat crossing tells a different story. It was then calm and quite. Only the cars and a handful of passersby will be seen. All the stores are deep in their somberness. A smile spreads soon after I cross this road. I smile at the tranquility of this place which in a few hours will be turning in to one of the craziest roads where it will be hard to drive through the road. All the passersby will come on road to either cross the road or to catch a bus/taxi/auto. The honking sounds from each and every vehicle will make your life like a hell. The traffic guards will be trying their best to make the traffic run smooth. But there will be no change. It will remain as busy and unorganized as it is. And here I should blame the people who are always prone to dissuade to make the city beautiful. Sigh...
The other day we the parents dropped lil K at her school and enjoying the drive way back home recollecting all the old new stories of our life. The weather was cloudy and the cool breeze made it more romantic to float down in a realm of romanticism. We crossed the ever enchanting Rabindra Sarobar Bridge and heading towards the Prince Anwar Shah Crossing. All of a sudden the Hubby Man hold his break and slowed down the car. A mother cyclist was carrying her little daughter on the back carrier of the cycle, crossing this speedy traffic prone road reluctantly. She crossed our car and the Hubby Man was just about to gear up the speed when we heard a bloodcurdling screeching sound of someone's car who pressed the emergency break and we saw the Mother and the child with a loud shout fell from the cycle. The Driver of that car and the Hubby Man stopped the car and rushed to them. I was sitting standstill and trying to understand what exactly happened in these last few seconds.  I got down from the car and went to the spot. By God's grace both the mother and the kid were fine. It was the driver of the car who had actually saved them. I saw my husband scolding that lady a lot for her recklessness. Frankly speaking I was feeling like slapping the lady for how irresponsible she could be. The way, she was crossing the road as if it was a playground totally ignoring the speedy moving cars.  Being a mother it is the first responsibility to protect your child and to teach all the rules & regulations of life. If we keep on ignoring them then in long run why to blame the kid. And moreover if something would have happened to them, everybody would blame the driver and might be beaten him to death, where the truth was the driver was actually the saviour. With a pounding heart all of us started moving to each other's destination.  The sweet morning within a fraction of second changed in to bitterness. And for few days I was not able to bear the fact of the recklessness of the mother and dreading the fact what worst could have happened. We always blame to reckless driving but every day I travel to and fro 80 kms and most of the time it catches my notice that the passersby are most of the time at fault.

Now let us move to today's recipe: Chicken Hotdog Stuffed Buns. It is very filling and healthy too. For the filling you can go wild with anything after your mind.

Ingredients:
(Yields 4-5 buns)
For the buns:
Flour - 1 cup
Instant yeast-  A bit less than 1 tspn
Warm Milk - 1/2 - 3/4 cup (More or less)
Olive oil - 2 table spoon
Salt - 1/4 tspn
Sugar - 1 tspn
Butter - 1 -2 tbspn
Sesame Seeds - 1 tbspn

For the Stuffing:
Chicken Hotdog - 2-3
Slices Onion - 1 small
Coloured bell pepper sliced - 1/2 cup
Chopped garlic - 2 tspn
Ginger paste - 1/2 tspn
Tomato Sauce - 1 tbspn
Worcestershire sauce - 1 tspn
Grated cheese - 1/2 cup (Optional)
Oil- 1 tbspn
Salt and Sugar ad per taste
Method:
Make the stuffing: 
Heat oil in the pan. Add the garlic and fry. Add the onion saute for a while then add all the other ingrediants apart from the cheese. Fry for few minutes on flame and then take off  from the stove. Make sure it is dry.
Make the buns:

  1. Add all the dry ingredients with the flour. Mix well. Add warm milk slowly at a time and keep on needing. Don't pour all the milk at one time. One has to make a semi soft dough so add milk as per requirement.
  2. Keep on kneading at least for 10 minutes. Then take a big bowl and cover the dough with a damp cloth or cling fling  and let  rise for 1 hour. After one hour again knead back the dough for 3-4 minutes and then again keep it for 40-45 minutes. Now take the dough and make 4-5 balls (Or more or less) out of it. Make sure the balls should have enough size to be stuffed.
  3. Roll each ball in a small disc and then put the stuffing and cheese in it. And then join  together the edges and seal nicely and roll in to a smooth ball again. You can add a bit oil on your palm to avoid the stickiness. Make a nicely shaped buns rolling in between the palms.
  4. Pre- heat the oven at 200 C for 6-7 minutes.
  5. Take a baking tray. Grease it and put the buns. Brush the buns with melted butter and top with some sesame seeds on each bun.
  6. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the buns gets a nice brown tinge and the top is crispy enough.  Take it out and enjoy.
Note:
1. You can use egg white too to brush the top of the buns to get a nice brown top while baking.
2. For the stuffing anything can be added. You can go for a veg or a non- veg too.

Photography Notes::
I clicked it on Program mode. The ISO was 1600. I shot it at night time. It was clicked in normal Tube Light that we had in every house. The light was coming from far left and I had kept the right side dark. From my experience - dark background for night shoots suits best.

July 29, 2014

Mango Curd


Oh my…I am going to face a bad day. I bought four mangoes and had totally forgotten about its existence. Suffocated in a plastic bag it spent almost two days when I suddenly bumped in to them while cleaning my kitchen counter. Yea I am to some extend a forgetful lady who sometimes keeps her mobile phone in the refrigerator or the butter in the Micro-oven. Yea, yea I know. You must be thinking I am exaggerating. Oh no absolutely not. And this might be the only reason that often I am bashed down in a vocal war with my Man due to my forgetful nature (Now he writes everything and stick it on refrigerator so that it should not skip my mind- Aha good solution to avoid the Home Wars. :P). Ok now the moral of the fact was when I picked up one Mango and served to the lil one she instantly rejected. To her, the taste of the mango was too sweet and different.  So I tried a bite. Yeww… It had become over ripen and due to that it was leaving a kind gassy taste and acidic too. Now what to do with the remaining mangoes!!! So I took a whole day to decide what can be made with these (For you people who think Food Bloggers are genius, they know everything, they make recipes instantly blah blah – Here is the proof  they are not – I mean I am not But I know many who are really a genius).
I didn't want to discard the expensive mangoes. The man shouted a bit (As lil K disclosed the secret that she was not able to eat the Mango..grrrrr). And I silently digested it. The next day the idea clicked to make Mango curd. To be fare I have never made Lemon curd or either Mango curd. So I started browsing through the net. And got a recipe after my mind and hit it. Frankly speaking the gassy smell still was remained in the curd. But I did like it with some crackers or just as it is after the meal.  So I came to this conclusion if the mango is over ripen it is OK to make Mango Curd. But if the carbon dioxide raises high in the mango it is better to discard. Or if you have some better Idea then please share with me.
My Food Photography Experience:
Now onward I have thought of sharing how I am learning Food Photography and  trying to improve it.
# For me the first thing one should learn is to FOCUS the main object of a dish which actually is considered as a hero.
# Once you are well versed with focusing objects then you should start concentrating on syncing the whole picture with LIGHT. Trying clicking from every angle. And you will understand from which position you are having the best focus.
#I have started my journey first with the PROGRAM Mode and with the basic lens that comes with camera by default. Then I move on to the 50mm/1.8ft lens. It is the cheaper of the lot and I swear best for Food Photography mainly for the beginners.
# Each dish should have a story. And according to that you should create the background and arrange the props.
# I bought simple and cheap Masonite Boards and colour them to use them as by back grounds.
# Keep some piece of different types of plain colourful and designer clothes, one can use them also as the background.
# I always share it that click in that way so that the picture should not need to get edited. If needed just balance the highlight and shadow that’s all.  For beginners editing in Picasa is the best one.
This much for today. On my next post will share more…Now lets move on to the recipe:
Ingredients:
(Yields approx 1 & 1/4 cup)
{Recipe adapted from HERE}
Mango - 1 large ripe and cubed
Buttter- 6 tblspn
Sugar -1/3 cup 
 
Lemon Juice- 1 tblspn
Lemon Zest - from one small lemon
Egg- 3

Method:
1.  Blend the Mango cubes in a blender and make a puree. Reserve.
2. Melt butter in a Kadai/deep dense pan. Add sugar, lemon juice,  and  lemon zest. Cook over medium heat. Keep on  stirring, until sugar gets totally dissolved and the mixture comes to simmer. (Please see Note: #3)
3. Add the Mango puree and bring to boil.
4.  In a separate bowl whisk the eggs one at a time. 
5. Take the Mango off the  heat and gradually whisk in the egg and fold nicely. 
6. Again put the mixture on heat and cook over moderate heat. Keep on stirring continuously to avoid the lumps. When it will start to bubble and the consistency turns a bot condensed then take it off the heat and cool. (Please check Note: #2)
7. When it is completely cooled down pour the mango curd an airtight container  and refrigerate for  at least 2 hours and then serve it. You can have it with bread or crackers or you can make tart and fill it with Mango curd. Some grated chocolates or some fresh chopped fruits too goes very well with it.
Note:-
1. I have made this out of 2 mangoes and used 5 eggs.
2. After the Mango Curd is done it is recommended to run it through a fine sieve to get rid of the lumps if formed any. I have skipped that part. 
3. I would recommend to add half of the sugar first and then the other half after adding the mango pulp. Because if the mango is too sweet then the addition of excess sugar may make it too sweeter. So first taste the sweetness and then add the remaining sugar as much needed.


July 16, 2014

Stuffed Omelette

"What you have Chhotu?" 
Sandy was thoroughly drenched. There was no point of taking any shelter anymore. But he was starving for a cup of tea or coffee to warm up his tired limbs and naturally something to eat. He was on his way back home and hitching for last 20 minutes for a taxi. And moreover the sudden rain had ruined his entire romantic mood that was weaving the future he wanted to spend with Sai. 
"Namaste Dada!!! What you want?" The boy popped up from this dark shadowy roadside snack bar. Sandy was waiting outside and a bit in hesitant whether to enter or not. But the jocund welcome tone of the boy made him comfortable to reserve a corner sit for him.
"First serve me a hot tea and something to eat." Sandy replied.
"Ok. Then try our Egg Noodles.." Cackled the boy.
Sandy just wanted something to eat and the words -Egg Noddles, made his stomach rumbled with a jiggle. He nodded his head and ordered to bring it quickly. He chose a corner table next to the door. So that the dripping water drops from his body could flow down through the door, brushing the wet steps and then get mingled in the water logged street. Ah, this is his city of joy, where a 10 minutes heavy rain turns a dry road into a creek. He could see the two way traffic moving in slow space splashing the water which is curling down again to kiss the stagnant water. 
"Ah, Sai where are you!!!" Sandy felt a bolted emotion suddenly choked his throat. He was missing her so much. If she was here she would be jumping like a little girl and sharing her single precious excitement while enjoying the incessant rain and the music of the droplets paring with the splashing water. She loves rain......Sandy took out his phone and clicked a picture and sent Sai through whatsapp. A sad smiley blinked up right away and then:
"Missing me?"
"Hun.."
"Love you.."
"Love you too.."
"Dada your tea and Egg Noodles.." Chhotu disrupted the song of the love birds and served the ordered dish.
"What is this?, I ordered for Egg Noodles." Sandy with a surprised face asked the boy.
The boy jovially replied, "Are Dada this is the special Egg Noodles. Once you eat, you will ask for more." The boy vanished inside in no time. 
Sandy took a look around the room. It was quite full. All were busy in chatting or engaged with their phones. Munching, sipping and gulping. Sandy's face reflected a kind of disappointment. Though he was an egg lover, right now he was not in a mood to have an Omlette. He was craving more for the Egg Noodles. His mind was slowly getting heated up. He clicked a picture of the dish and sent it to Sai:
"At which angle will you call it Egg Noodles??"
"What!! Are you kidding?? This is an Omlette... hahaha "
"I ordered for the famous Egg Noodles of this place and this is what I was served."
"Hahahaha...Enjoy..."
Sandy was very hungry and whatever was served in front of him had started to lure him. He cut a piece and forked it to make a way to his mouth. Oh, my what was this peeping out!!! Noodles!!!! Therefore the Omlette was looking so fatty than the usual one. A smile twinkled in his face. He took a bigger piece along with the noodles and then he closed his eyes. A sheer joy of happiness shivered down through his veins. He had never tasted such a tasty dish before in his life. 
"Sai, it is Egg Noodles!!!! And it is delicious. I will surely bring you here to taste it."
"What??"
"I mean it is Egg Noodles or rather I should say Stuffed Omlette with noodles."
"Hahahahaha.....So lesson learnt don't make assumption by name. Taste it and then decide... ;) :P"
Sandy finished his plate in no time. And the hot tea helped him to regain back his energy again to start his struggle to reach home through his water logged pathway.
"Chhotu, the Egg Noodles was awesome."
"I told you..It is the famous dish here.." The happy boy bid good bye to Sandy holding a tip of ten rupees in his hand.

Ingredients:
You need some stuffing. Her I have taken Vegetable Noodles (The normal way we make at home)
For each roll we need 2 eggs
Grated Cheese (as per requirement)
Tomato Sauce
Salt to taste
Black pepper powder
Oil/butter for frying
Method:
1. Beat two eggs nicely. Ad Salt and Black pepper powder as per taste.
2. Take a non-stick pan. Heat Oil/Butter and then pour the Egg. Make sure to spread it evenly in a round big circle. 
3. In a low flame let it cook till the surface looks done. Now take small portion of the stuffing (Here I added homemade noodles) and line vertically. Leave a little space on the top and the bottom. Top some grated cheese on it. In skilled hand roll the omlette and wrap the noodles. Let it be done for another couple of minutes. And then serve with some ketchup or salad.

Notes:
1. You can make many variations of it. Different kinds of stuffing can me made, like fried rice, stir fried vegetables, stir fried sausages, dry minced chicken or some stir fried boneless chicken  etc.
2. If you want to avoid the egg yolk then just make it with egg whites. It comes out pretty well. I often make it for my parents and in-laws as they are prone to cholesterol. 
 Nutritional Value:
For the kids it is very healthy and they like it when you serve it with the variations mentioned above. Along with the egg one can get the supplemented proteins, vitamins along through the vegetables too.

July 11, 2014

French Weekend at Swissotel, Kolkata

"French cuisine is known for its exquisite taste and presentation and we are proud to present traditional French recipes brought to us from Lyon which is know as the 'gastronomical capital of France'". I am sure that the people of the city will enjoy the dishes."
- Mr.Marco Saxer (General Manager of Swissotel, Kolkata)
 Kolkata Food Bloggers recently got invited at the inauguration of the French Weekend at Cafe Swiss in Swissotel that will continue till 13th July'14 and to taste the exquisite flavours from France to celebrate  the French National Day (celebrated on 14th of July).  As a part of the team Amrita, Vishal and I reached on time to witness the french culinary journey that will keep the impression in our mind forever. Just at the entrance we got struck to see the decor and the huge replica of the World Cup to keep the spirit of the recent sport fever. Warm and cordial greetings from team Swiss made us comfortable and we were served Cranberry cooler and Sparkling wine. When it comes to French Cuisine the concept of the fine dining with its unique delicacies pops up and make you lure. I always admire the quality of food that Swissotel restaurants serve and mainly when they present the food fests picking up different cuisines of the world, they ensure that they should present the authentic taste of the cuisine. Therefore for each Food Fest they bring the specialised and experienced chefs from that particular country. This time the flare from French Cuisine instantly sealed our lips so that we should not talk but eat and eat and eat. 

Most of the delegates were from France and French Consulate. Busy in chitchatting and munching the delectable starters. We were introduced with the GM, Mr. Marco Saxer and was overwhelmed to see his cordial greetings that made us more comfortable. To enrich our knowledge we were introduced with Louise Arnes from Lyon, the Gastronomical Capital of France, who crafted the menu keeping in mind to stick to its authentic taste and to present the traditional dishes from her country. She also shared keeping in mind the local ingredients that  could be found in India, the menu had been designed. Though she wanted to add two more dishes like Red varrine and a dessert, since the ingredients were not available here therefore it got omitted. The key qualities of the food  were: spice less and the usage of the fresh ingredients. So as our journey started of tasting and exchanging the knowledge of French Cuisine and the dishes served that very day.
The starter menu comprised of: Zucchini and Tomato Verrine, Accars (Fish Dumpling), Asparagus and Ham Ballotins, Smoked Salmon and Avocado verrine, Mini Chicekn croquet monsieur and Gourgeres (Cheese Puff). My picks were the Smoked Salmon and Avocado verrine and the Accars (Fish Dumpling). How could I miss the Asparagus and Ham Ballotins and Cheese Puffs too. Smoked Salmon and Avocado verrine was just out of the world. A layer of avocado seasoned mildly with lemon juice and then topped with a layer of sour cream and crowned with the smoked salmon. One need to scoop out the two layers altogether and to take a bit of the salty smoky flavoured salmon. And here you go- I reached directly to the heaven after each bite. The fish Dumpling was the another one hit my palate. Crab meat steamed and topped with some brown sauce made a perfect pairing and after tasting it the balanced flavour did win my heart. So as the Asparagus and Ham Ballotins. All the fresh ingredients and the usage of minimal ingredients made each dish not only exotic but too savoury.
The Main course menu  goes like this: From the Veg section:
 Dauphinois Potato (Potatoes cooked with Cream). Ratatouille, Herb and Cheese Shouffle, Warm Camembert with Wild Mushroon Fricassee and Onion and Leek Tart.
We were recommended by Louise to taste Dauphinois Potato (Potatoes cooked with Cream). That one is one of the famous dishes of her native land. And so it was. Half Boiled Potato got baked with Cream and Cheese made the pair like made in heaven. The creamy bite of the potato coated with Cheese and Cream made the taste nothing but yum. 
When I first watched the movie Ratatouille, I was hooked to create the dish Ratatouille at my kitchen. I made it but never knew what would be the original taste. This was for the first time I tasted and found it not only delectable but exquisitely good in taste. A mild tangy tomato based sauce coated with the vegetables made a succulent bite. Yes it had then become a winner where a meat lover like me complementing a veg dish like this.
Warm Camembert with Wild Mushroon Fricassee was also a dish worth to mention. Mushroom cooked in thick cheesy-nutty gravy made perfect blend of taste. 
The Non-Veg Buffet Spread goes like this:
Lobster Thermidor,Poulet au Vinalgre (Lyon Specialty of vinegar braised chicken, Bouf Bourgulgnon (Tenderloin cooked with red wine), Gigot d'agneau (Roast leg of lamb served with roaste potatoes), Pork Tenderloins with Bacon and Apple Riesling Sauce.
My picks of the day were the Pork Tenderloins with Bacon and Apple Riesling Sauce and the Lobster Thermidor. Fresh Pork slices cooked in diced bacon and Apple Riesling sauce was out of the world. The Pork was perfectly cooked and the freshness of each ingredients made it more delicious. At each bite one will have the tiny diced bacon along with the juicy pork piece.
Lobster Thermidor here got presented in a different way since it was a part of the buffet spread. But none could beat the taste. I have tasted Lobster Thermidor in variuos places. And each time I came up with a different taste. Here too the taste was different but again taste wise it got the full marks.
The non-veg dishes were also winner in its own way. Mainly when you got a chance to taste the authentic and traditional French dishes sitting in your own city of joy, what life needs more.

How could I miss the Breads and the Cheese Truffles that are French Cuisine famous for. The truffles were exceptionally good in taste cheese rolled in nuts/ pesto/coconut flakes. I have never imagined that a cheese truffle would be so tasty. It went perfectly with the assorted breads that was on the spread. The Spread also had the Famous French onion soup and Bouillabaisse (Sea Food Soup served with rouille). I tasted the seafood one. The smell of the seafood was very mild that would make you more prone to go for the second serving and the next. Assorted seafood crunches would give you a mouthful serving with the warm liquid soup pouring down your throat giving an utmost satisfaction to enjoy the delectable dish.
And last but not the least here I come to the Dessert section that is French Cuisine mainly famous for. All the famous French Desserts along with some from other cuisines too were lined up to made us satisfied. We were pretty full then. But who could resist if you have these luring desserts welcoming you. Croquembouche, Matafaim,Paris Breast, Blue Berry Cheese Cake, Lamington, French Apple Tart, French Swiss roll, Creme Brulee, Cherry Clafoutis. Opera Cake, Chocolate Mousse, Sandesh. Ladoo and so on and forth all were presented at one's service. No need to say again the each dessert was a winner. But my pick was the Croquembouche and the Paris Breast. Paris Breast was a kind of choux pastry stuffed with hazelnut sauce. At each bite the oozing chocolaty hazelnut sauce was a heavenly match with choux pastry.
All over my experience was splendid. Mainly loved the way the taste and the presentation of the dishes were taken care of, keeping in mind to give the utmost authentic flavour of the traditional dishes that were crafted in the Buffet Menu for the French Weekend.

For more Pictures pls visit my Facebook Page.

French Weekend at Cafe Swiss is on till 13th July'14.
Price: INR 1600 plus taxes per person for Dinner Buffet. A special Sunday Brunch on 13th July will cost INR 1650 plus taxes per person.
Timings: 7.00pm to 11.00pm 
To know more detail about French Weekend one may call at this no: 033-6626 6666