Month: October 2013

Fizzy Batter Fried Fish

Chemistry was an exciting subject in school – at least the part that required us to don lab coats and act like scientists. No matter that the only thing we were actually allowed to do, is heat some substances (washing soda/ copper sulphate) and note down the properties. I don’t want to give you the spiel about how recreating a recipe is nothing but chemistry, but in this case it’s true. I was supposed to use carbonated water or soda, in combination with soda bicarbonate powder to get the desired ‘fizziness’ to make the batter light and crispy. It’s anticlimactic that the actual reaction was nowhere near the explosion that I expected, but more of a tame bubble bath! But the end product was right as promised – crisp, light and almost see-through-lace like batter. Now that’s an experiment recipe worth repeating. Fizzy Batter Fried Fish Prep time: 20 mins Cook time: 10 mins Serves 4 What you need: 125 gms Plain Flour 1 tsp bicarbonate of Soda/ baking soda 1 tsp Paprika 150ml cold, …

Of Picket Fences and a Lavender Door – Cafe of Joy (Whitefield Main Road, Bangalore)

Now ‘quaint’ is a word that is loosely used with a lot of cafes in Bangalore – a practice that must stop, after visiting the Café of Joy. This café can now claim monopoly of the term, with its picket fences, an all white theme with lavender accents and the most interesting knick knacks! If not for the in-your-face-signage of Bhagini restaurant next door, I could almost imagine that I stepped into a gorgeous café in the German countryside. And I’m not saying that because of the cute figurines of the German baker couple, or the little white cow milk pourers, or the cow butter dishes, or the fact that the board says Brot.Gateaux.Biscotti. (Ok, that is very German :P) But I’m game for a little round of active imagination and if their desire was to transport me to a European café – game well played! We heard that apart from cakes, artisanal breads, and baked goodies (produced at their on-site bakery) they also serve lunch. So on Saturday, a really talented baker friend and …

Coq Au Vin for easy entertaining

I have not been lazy. The fact that my last blog post was a month and a half ago should not lead you to the obvious conclusion. The reason for not posting is because most of my cooking these days is done in the evening. That leads to the sad fact that there is no natural light to shoot my pictures. (This is the only time I wish I lived in a temperate region where the sun sets late!). This leads to me not posting the recipes because I always feel a recipe is enhanced by pictures. (Which is why I struggle to buy cookbook without pictures, unless it was something monumental like the Larousse Gastronomique!) I make Coq Au Vin pretty often. That’s because it’s easy, can be made in large quantities, it freezes well and the leftovers always taste more brilliant than the day you actually make it. Another more practical reason is to use up leftover wine. (Not that there is too much, but the rare occasions of opening two bottles for …

Zen and the Art of Lounging @ Tao Terraces (M.G. Road, Bangalore)

After reading mixed reviews about the Tao Terraces, it was time for me to check it out myself. I have always visited their gorgeous terrace lounge bar for a couple of drinks and to enjoy the best house music in Bangalore. Even through the restaurant on the 1st level looks like a setting out of an opulent Thai mansion, I’ve always headed straight up for the views and the wonderful Bangalore weather. This time I was determined to give their Pan-Asian restaurant a try as well, especially since I realized that they served Japanese, as well as Burmese cuisine.   Situated on the 5th floor of the 1MG mall, it’s not hard to find. The hostess will guide you to the big red door that opens into the lavish and distinctly Asian setting. We headed up to the lounge first for a couple of drinks before our dinner reservation downstairs. One thing the Tao Terraces can boast of is having space! The terrace is made up of Thai style open cabanas, water bodies and little …

Feeling Blue – News Cafe (Indiranagar, Bangalore)

News Café is like the poor cousin of Smoke House Deli. They opened pretty much the same time on 100 ft road in Indiranagar and both have a similar cafe/ all day dining format. SHD created quite a buzz in the Bangalore food scene, whereas News café failed to garner anything newsworthy. The reason we ventured there was also because of SHD – they were full one Saturday afternoon and could not accommodate us. We were hungry and had already parked our car close by and it seemed like too much of an effort to drive again. So we walked next door to News Café and zoomed up the elevator to the terrace. (Seems like the trend in Bangalore to have restaurants and café’s on the terrace – is the rent cheaper?) News Café is a South African chain of restaurants and boasts of having 50 outlets with two in Bengaluru and Hyderabad. (Concentrating on the IT hubs, are we?). Their website claims that they have won the ‘Best Cocktail Bar’ 11 years in a …

Flight Of Cocktails – Sundowner @ LikeThatOnly (Now Closed :( )

I like my cocktails. Why must I have a stodgy old rum and coke when I can have an exciting Cuba Libre with a dash of lime? Or if you’re a vodka drinker like me, a fancy Cosmopolitan to sip at, whilst we elegantly drape one long leg over the other, at the bar counter? Or to go all James Bond and have a Martini – shaken, not stirred. Sounds dated? Well it is! With so many permutations and combinations of heady liquor and even headier liqueurs, you would expect the bars in Bangalore to offer us something other than creations from the 1960’s! Yes, we like our cocktails and yes, we order them religiously on a night out, but just because we are easy to please – doesn’t mean you don’t even try!! For lord’s sake, a single cocktail costs as much as a main course in some places and if I’m going to get Vodka topped with Cranberry juice from Tropicana – I’d rather give it a miss. (Ok, I lie… I’ll still …