16 October 2015

The Food Week That Was - Regional Favourites

Before I start off this post, I am going to share some happy news with you'll. The website Rebates Zone recently published an infographic on the top fifty food blogs in India, and yours truly features in the list at number forty. See the list here.

Anyone who knows me well enough will know that I love Indian regional food more than I love world cuisine. I may be falling into the rare minority group here (no, I don't mean that I am Parsi), but I rather explore cuisines from different Indian states than run-of-the-mill Italian, Chinese, and Thai. It is a pity that we don't think of the vastness and diversity that India has to offer when it comes to food or travel. 
My food week pushed me out of my comfort zone - Bandra - took me to the far suburbs of Borivali and old gullys of Fort. My food week encapsulated me back into my comfortable cocoon with two cuisines that I love - Maharastrian food and Parsi bhonu.

Girgaon Katta, Borivali:
Personally I feel that Maharashtrian food is under represented in Mumbai. Barring a few pockets in and around Dadar, Shivaji Park, and Mahim the cuisine fails to be easily available. Which is why discovering Girgaon Katta in Borivali - mini Gujarat if I may - was like discovering as oasis in a desert. 

With a fairly large menu that well covers all the popular Marathi food staples under fun categories such as 'tasty' Chatakdar, 'crispy' Kurkurit, 'spicy' Zanzanit, 'tangy' Chatpatit, and more. Crisp on the outside, fluffy within; the Thalipeeth was worth a repeat order. Flavourful and moist, please make sure you ask for heaps of white butter on the side which melts atop this beautiful desi pancake. Crunchy sev gaathiya comes doused in a spicy misal gravy to be mopped up with pav on the side - who doesn't love misal pav? Misal pav is the epitome of ' different textures and flavour combinations' in one dish. Make sure you try their tangy sweet kokum sherbet. And save stomach space for the piyush - a liquefied shrikhand type drink, calorie laden and filled with goodness.

Misal Pav
Kokum Sherbet and Piyush
Masale Bhaat

I am planning a trip to the suburbs again soon, simply to try more dishes off their menu. On the list this time around are Kothambirwadi, batata bhaji with puri, and their special thali. And kharvas - a sweet made from the first milk of a lactating cow - for dessert. Value for money, decent portion sizes, and flavors that pack a punch; Girgaon Katta is worth a visit if you live in the far suburbs and are craving Maharashtrian food.
Also try - Simply Saraswat in Borivali  which offers rare South Indian cusine with Saraswat Brahman roots.

Mocambo Cafe, Fort:
Torrential rain, loud booms of thunder, and a growling stomach. I was lost and wandering in the bylanes of Fort looking for the first place I could grab a bite at. Then a small little door appears in a dark alleyway. And my tryst with Mr Mocambo begins.

A small, nondescript eatery where the walls are complete with autographs of all the famous personalities who have dined there in the past. They're known for their exceptional European meat dishes - Shepherd's Pie, Chicken A La Kiev, Irish Stew, Yorkshire Chicken, Lobster Thermidor....you get the drift. *wipes drool from mouth* What you really need to do is ask the server for the Parsi specials menu, which they don't have printed on all the tables for some reason. And then you can thank me later.

We ordered a salli boti that was tender, well cooked, and had that piquant sweet spicy taste that is a mandate when it comes to Parsi cooking. Skip the conventional dhansak and order the pulao dar, the meal all bawas have on joyous occasions. Special mention to the Bacon and Mushroom soup - it was raining and the weather demanded soup. The meaty soup has climbed it's way onto my all time favorite bacon dishes in the city. *new blogpost idea*

Salli Boti
Chicken Pulao Dal
#OnMyPlate
Sometimes when I am down in the dumps, and the rain makes very grumpy, and the frizz attacks my hair like an evil monster, there's only one thing I crave - Parsi bhonu. Seek, and you shall find - that day I found comfort food in a desolate situation. Which is why the food at Cafe Mocambo made it to The Food Week That Was.

(The author dined anonymously and paid for her own meals. The views are unbiased and completely her own.)

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