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C’Wealth Cuisines

A café with British pub grub… In Delhi

Forgetful Elephant By Anoothi Vishal In the gastronomic universe, French food is revered, Spanish seen as unutterably chic, Italian as pop but British as mostly crap. Of course, it’s an unfortunate reputation. British pub staples are wholesome, wonderful comfort food that will fill your stomach and gladden your heart while (usually) not costing the earth. [...]

Mughalai meets Bengali: The story of a heritage cuisine

By Anoothi Vishal The Mughals undoubtedly had the biggest impact on the cuisines of northern Indian (as also the Deccan) and even though “Mughlai” food is a generic term today, usually standing for a hodge podge of commercially-constructed dishes, some of our most interesting heritage cuisines have Mughal roots. So what are these heritage cuisines [...]

Roti chanai, dim sums and an “anti-cafe ”

Fu In Chinese, it means “good luck” and indeed Fu marks a great turning point in the business of restaurants in Delhi—at least, when it comes to Chinese food. Unlike the “family-style”, Indian-Chinese places of yore, this is an anti café with nothing stereotypical about it. So abandon all old-fashioned expectations of how a Chinese restaurant [...]

The truth about Chettinad

One of the few south Indian cuisines to be really exposed to us all over the country is, of course, Chettinad — or more correctly, the cuisine of the Nattukotai Chettiar community of Tamil Nadu. Speak of south Indian non-vegetarian food (at least outside the four peninsular states) and nine out of 10 people are [...]

Paya, paella and some omlette talk

How to serve up trotters… and the best of eggs… By Anoothi Vishal “By the way, Chandra can now cook the perfect paya,” said uncle-in-law, who can be quite the intimidating editor with a fondness for all things food and French. Chandra is his cook, an affable pahari lady who has withstood perfection in the [...]

Anoothi’s Culinary Experiences in Goa

You wouldn’t think there is either a global recession or an off-season in Goa, crossing the Mandovi in a chartered mini-bus. The vehicle, after all, is just one in a snaking line of several used by hotels to ferry guests to and from the airport. Since I was last here in the land of sun [...]

In praise of Bengali food

Amit and Amiti, two of my journalist friends, invited us over for dinner at their home this weekend. And what a splendid meal they provided. I know, if you are cooking yourself, the trick is to keep things really simple so that you can enjoy the evening yourself. But given the kind of upbringing I [...]

The world’s best risotto chef

Before the financial meltdown when chefs indulged in high-flying nonsense such as edible gold in ice cream sundaes, a risotto of escargots (the most expensive in the world, on a room service menu, where else but in France) would have tickled our fantasies. Now, it just makes us go ugh at the waste of it [...]

Street Foods of India… in pictures

“In the main bazaar of Pahar Ganj, a popular area amongst backpackers who visit Delhi, there is a pakora stand that’s been there since the beginning of time. A fat man used to run it, at the corner of the vegetable market, selling pakoras for ten rupees a  plate. He sat—and is probably still sitting—cross-egged [...]

Indian Food Made Easy by Anjum Anand

A presenter of BBC2’s Indian Food Made Easy, Anjum Anand is as attractive as some of the recipes photographed for this beautifully brought out book—with photographs by Vanessa Courtier. Anjum’s show was being aired on Discovery Travel and Living in India and the book was brought out alongside, or at least that’s how I laid [...]