Thursday, 17 March 2016

Awadhi Food Festival, Swissotel, Kolkata

 The Awadhi Food Festival at Durbari, Swissotel Kolkata was very special for me in many ways. It was more than food blogging, more than being a food enthusiast or an opportunity as a Kolkata Food Bloggers to cover the event. It was literally a call to bring back memories of my childhood spent in Lucknow. It was nostalgic. 

Although I had spent relatively a very short part of my formative years in Lucknow between grade 3 and 5, they were however very impacting. It was there that I first fell in love; fell in love with Kebabs. Little I knew that this influence would shape a lot of what I am right now. Much of my current food related learning are still based in around the world of kebab and the Awadhi Food Festival made me fall in love with it all over again.

Ofcourse Awadhi Food is not just about kebabs and that was represented so well at Durbari where the menu covered a lot of other aspects of the cuisine from soups to starters, main course and dessert.   


The galavat kebab is one of the signature dishes of Awadhi cuisine. Its a minced lamb kebab with flavourful spices. It has for generations been a favourite dish of a lot of people and have attracted people from far and wide to relish it. The galavat kebab served at the Durbari was not only as soft, flavourful and consistent as they looked but there was a vegetarian version of it which, if I was not told, I would have definitely mistaken it for a lamb one (which was served later). 

Paneer Mumtaz was a cottage cheese in mildly spiced tomato gravy. Very beautifully presented and having a beautiful gravy consistency. 

The Aloo Karare (Or Crispy Potato) had a very interesting crackle with coriander seeds along with other spices. Definitely a new potato dish I had tried.  

The bread segments had Keema naan, warqi paratha, rumali roti, tandoori roti etc to go along with the main course dishes. The biryanis and other rice options are also there for the taking. 

The nawabi gosht korma or spring lamb cooked in homemade spices was surely one of my pick for the evening. A very tender lamb with an amazing gravy. 

The dessert section had the Kesarya Nawabi Phirni (saffron flavoured sweetened milk and rice) and Sahi Tukda (awadhi dessert with bread and sweetened reduced milk, dry fruits and milk.)

Current GM Marco Saxer in a jovial mood, as always)

As dubbed by the current GM Marco Saxer,"The correct way to handover to the new incoming GM Subhrajit Bardhan"

Having a great time talking to the amazing chefs behind the Awadhi Food Festival
The Awadhi Food Festival will be held only at at Durbari, Swissotel Kolkata Neotia Vista from 17th to 27th March 2016. The timings are Monday to Sunday from 1900 Hrs to 2300 Hrs for Dinner and lunch exclusively form Friday to Sunday at 1230 Hrs to 1500 Hrs.  

Happy Nawab-ing

Vishal Tupper

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Chocolate glazed Doughnuts

It is amazing how we can push our abilities in times of need. Recently I had the opportunity to participate in a bake sale and managed to churn out quite some goodies in no time. I was amazed at my speed and realized that lack of time is always just an excuse we give ourselves.  
Amongst all the ideas that were floating in my head, I had almost ditched the thought of baking doughnuts because I was really not sure of its sale. But then there was this rising impulse inside me that made me jump up and make the dough and allow it to rest. The fluffy dough was then cut in the shape of a doughnut and fried to a beautiful golden colour. The doughnuts tasted light and fluffy and along with the chocolate glaze turned out to be an absolute treat. 
The icing on my baked goodies is always the family approval esp my daughter's. She was dying to put her hands on the chocolate slathered and sprinklers loaded doughnuts. I waited with a bated breath and saw her reaction as she picked one doughnut. Her head swung in an 'Ummmm' and I instantly knew I had baked goodness. 
The sale did not go too well and I ended up bringing most of the goodies at home. No one regretted as it meant a week long sweet feast at home. :)

Recipe source : Adapted from here

Ingredients : I have reduced the recipe to half and achieved about 14 medium sized doughnuts
  • 1/2 tbsp instant yeast
  • 1/2 cup or more warm milk
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp butter, softened
  • refined oil for frying
  • dark chocolate, melted
  • Sprinklers
Procedure : 
Take flour, sugar, salt and yeast in a bowl. Stir.
Add egg. Stir.
Add warm milk a little at a time and knead to a smooth dough. You may require more than 1/2 cup of milk. 
Add butter and knead. 
Take another bowl and grease it. Put the dough in it and cover with a damp muslin cloth. Leave it for an hour or more to double in size. 
You can also refrigerate the dough after the rise in case you want to use next day. Just let it come to room temperature before you roll, cut and fry.
Roll your dough and cut in doughnut shape using round cookie cutters of different size. Let it sit for 1/2 - 1 hour.  
I usually knead the hole back in the dough. You may like to fry them separately too. 
Put oil to fry the doughnuts in a deep pan.
Fry the doughnuts in medium heat till they are golden brown.
Drain on a kitchen towel or a tissue napkin.
Keep melted chocolate in a wide bowl. Dip the doughnuts in it halfway and sprinkle with colourful sprinklers. 
Doughnuts are best eaten the same day, almost soon after frying. You can also refrigerate excess dough and fry fresh as and when needed

Kolkata Food Bloggers are organizing a one of its kind Bake'rs Showcase featuring the best talent in Homebaker's. Folks in Kokata, please book your date and join us in this endeavor where you are guaranteed to find some amazing and creative bakes. Find more details here .

Happy Doughnut eating


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