Friday 28 September 2018

Squid and Vegetables Sautéed in Butter - Red Chilli Flakes - Garlic

When you grow your own vegetables, its sheer happiness. My husband grew some spinach at home. I have used some of the baby spinach in this dish. This is a healthy sautéed non vegetarian dish with the flavour of butter and seasoned with red chilli flakes and garlic. The dish looks colourful, it’s simple and delicious too.
8 medium size Squids cut into strips
1 medium size Sweet Potatoe cut into stripes
1 packet of Baby Corn cut into half lengthwise
1 packet of Mushrooms cut into 4 halves
6 Cherry Tomatoes whole
12 Garlic Cloves whole
10 to 12 Whole Baby Spinach
1/2 Lime
Himalayan Rock Salt or Normal Salt to taste
1 tsp Red Chilli Flakes
1/2 tsp Garlic powder
Juice of the marinated Squid
2 1/2 tsp Butter

Take the squids in a bowl, drizzle lime juice, rock salt, garlic powder and 1/2 tsp chilli flakes. Mix it well. Keep it aside. Take a saucepan or a pot. Add 2 cups of water. Add the sweet potatoe strips and let it boil. Meanwhile take a pan, add a tsp of butter, let it melt. Add the squids and sauté it until it’s cooked. Meanwhile when the sweet potato strips are tender then strain the water out from the sweet potato. Once the squids are cooked remove the squids out from the pan. In the same pan, add 1 tsp butter. Let it melt, add the sweet potato strips and continue to sauté for a minute. Add the baby corns and sauté for another minute. Add the whole garlic and continue to sauté. Add the mushrooms. Stir and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the marinated juice, rock salt, remaining chilli flakes and 1/2 tsp butter, let it sauté for another 2 minutes. Add the cherry tomatoes and stir. Add the baby spinach and sauté for another minute. Switch off the flame. Now add the sautéed squids and serve it hot. 

Sunday 23 September 2018


When Suprio invited me for the food tasting at River2Ocean. I was in two minds... later I decided to go. It was a wise decision. I am so thankful to Suprio (Admin of Mumbai Food Freak and The Nomad Foodie) for inviting me to Zorawar Karla’s restaurant Rivers2Oceans at Palladium Mall - Parle Mumbai. I must say it’s the place for all sea food lovers. They have variety of sea food dishes from across the globe. Most of the ingredients for the dishes are also procured from around the globe. You can actually feel the freshness of the ingredients. Not only sea food, but they have some of the amazing vegetarian and meat dishes too. The place also talks about unique varieties of Champagne and Wine. They have a lovely huge open bar and a kitchen.

 We could choose either Sea food or Vegetarian from the Chefs Tasting menu, it goes without saying that I chose Sea food. Peter and Mayur were our buddies from R2O helping us to identify the dishes and the ingredients used in the dishes. They both did a fabulous job. Chef Varun Kinger is the man behind the scene to create these unique gastronomical dishes. It was mind boggling.

We ate an elaborate 15 course meal which was categories into Cold tastings, Soups, Hawker’s Street, Small Plates, Sorbet, Mains and Dessert. Four types of champagne or wine was paired with the menu. Although I don’t drink, I enjoyed the visuals. Each champagne were served in different types of champagne flute glasses. It almost took us 4 hours to end this scrumptious meal.

Almost all the dishes were brilliant and delectable. Even though it was a sea food restaurant, as I said earlier the vegetarian and the meat preparation was equally good. It was a treat for the eyes and palate.
My drink for the evening -

Passion Fruit and Citrus... it was very refreshing.
The Amuse Bouche - It started with a palate cleanser -

* Yuzu Espuma with Caviar topping. This was totally vegetarian as the Caviar were created by molecular gastronomy from tomatoes, orange and cranberries, which had a citrusy flavour from Yuzu.
The Cold Tastings began with -

* Rock Oysters was served with Apple Mignonette and Asian Soy Sauce Dressing. The Rock Oysters rocks. It paired up well with the dressings. Yeh dil mange more.

* Scampi Tartare with Puffed Amaranth and Mandarin dressing. I enjoyed the visual as well as the taste.

* Tuna Nicoise Salad. This was a modernist take with tuna bits, with edamame and sous vide eggs. The Tuna salad preparation and the presentation was truly a treat to your eye and palate. It was a moleculer gastronomy dish.
This was followed by -

* Leek and Crab Soup with Butter Carb stick. The butter carb sticks were crunchy and went well with the soup. The soup was very flavourful. The presentation and taste was equally good.
The next in line was a dish from Hawker’s Street -

* Sea Bass Otak Otak, with Citrus Pandana dressing which was a Malay dish. It was delicious and I loved the distinctive flavour of the sambal paste and kafir lime. I am in love with the serving bowl.
The Small Plates dishes were -

* Textures of Mushrooms season with Taco dust.  The taco dust seasoned on the textured mushrooms was quite flavourful. There were many varieties of mushrooms added to the dish which indeed added texture to the dish.

* Chardonnay poached Mussels with parsley - paprika butter was served with Focaccia. It was delicious. The parsley - paprika butter at the end went well with the focaccia.

* Sushi taco with Avocado and Cream cheese. The covering of the taco was made with sea weed. This gave a crunchy texture and the sauce was creamy and delicious.

* Truffles fresh Lobster with Black Caviar and Dill Oil. Black Caviar are my favourite. I loved the preparation.

* Pulled Lamb Ragout with Parmesan. It was delicious.

* Charred Belgian Pork rubs with Maple and Balsamic Glazed. The fennel went blended well with the pork. It was one of my favourite. I didn’t mind if there was a repeat of the dish.
The next in line was basically a palate cleanser. It was -

* Orange and mint sorbet. The flavour of the orange and mint was distinct.
This was followed by another small plate dish

* Field mushrooms stuffed with Morels Home made Corzetti. I loved the woody flavour of the mushroom powder.
The Mains were

* Malabar Crab Curry served with Asian Rice and Parotta.  I like the crispy Parotta, but the Malabar curry was not to my taste. The sweetness of the curry at the beginning and the spiciness of the curry at the end didn’t agree to my palate. The dish could have been more balanced.
Finally it was followed by the dessert -

* Black Truffle with Gold leaf and Eton Mess which was an amazing English dessert. It was superlative. There was crunchiness from the meringue, sourness of the berries and the sweetness of the chocolate. It was delicious.
The presentation was good and I loved the crockery in which the food was served. This place is a treat for your palate and eyes too. I had a fabulous time at the restaurant with other foodie friends from Mumbai Food Freak and The Nomad Foodie. It’s an evening to cherish! It’s a must visit place for all food lovers who likes to explore and experience delicious food.

Thursday 6 September 2018

Chilli Fish

The Chinese origins who have successfully settled in some parts of Kolkata have highly influenced the local community with their food. The early Chinese settlers adapted and cooked the dishes as per ingredients availabled in the local market which gave birth to Indian Chinese Cuisine. The Indian Chinese food which has less similarities with the original Chinese food is now very commonly sold at every corners of the street in Kolkata and spread across India.
Some of the common Indian Chinese dishes that are sold are chow mein,Hakka noodles, fried rice, chilli chicken or fish, manchurian,  Schezwan etc.
Last time when my husband and myself had been to the fish market, we had picked up various types of fish. After our trip back home, I found a packet of Bhetki fillets in the freezer.
My husband said, How about making Chilli Fish? - to which I agreed.
He too is a good cook, and loves to help me in the kitchen. He chopped all the vegetables required to make the dish and here is the recipe.....

For the Marinate and Fried Fish
400 grams Boneless Fish cubes
1 tbsp Garlic minced
Salt to taste
1/4 cup Cornflour
1/4 cup All Purpose Flour
1 tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
1 Egg beaten
1/2 cup Oil to fry

Marinate the fish cubes with garlic, salt and soy sauce. Keep it aside for 15 minutes. Add the egg and mix well. Add corn flour and all purpose flour and mix well until all the fish cubes are coated well in the batter. Add oil in to a fry pan and heat it. Add the marinated fish cubes in batches and fry them until golden brown. Remove the fish on the paper towel. Keep it aside.

For the Chilli Fish
Fried Fish
1 Onion sliced or cubed
1 Green Capsicum sliced or cubed
8 to 10 Green Chillies cut into halves
1 tbsp Garlic minced
1 small piece Ginger cut into julienne
1 tbsp chopped Spring Onion
2 tbsp Soy Sauce
1 tbsp Green Chilli Sauce
2 tbsp White Vinegar
2 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
Salt to taste
2 tbsp Cornflour
4 tbsp Same Oil in which the fish has been fried

Take a pan, heat the oil. Add garlic and ginger, sauté for few seconds. Add the onions and capsicum and continue to sauté for a minute. Add 3/4 cup water and let it simmer for a minute. Meanwhile take the corn flour in a small bowl, add 2 tbsp water and mix it. Now add the salt, soy sauce, vinegar, chilli sauce and tomato ketchup into the gravy and stir. Let it simmer for a minute. Add the fish and let simmer for few seconds. Add the green chillies and stir. Add the corn flour mix into the gravy, continue to cook till the gravy thickens up. Switch off the flame. Garnish it with chopped spring onions. Serve it hot with  noodles or fried rice.