Monday, November 29, 2010

All Star Fry

All Star Fry

It’s high time I wrote a restaurant review; after all it’s what I’m supposed to be doing in this blog!

So it’s fitting that my first review should be of a place where I have so many happy dining memories – All Stir Fry.

This lovely little restaurant is located on the ground floor of Gordon House hotel and is very easy to reach; you simply tell the cab driver to take you to Colaba Causeway (via Regal cinema) take a left at Café Mondegar and the first left after that and your there. Gordon House is on your right.

The doormen and security guards are attentive and polite; the restaurant itself is very well lit, without being too bright. The seating is pleasant as well with wooden benches and tables. The only improvement I would make in the décor would be to make all the benches have backrests; this would make the dining experience much more comfortable.

The cocktail menu looked good which is always important! The names were creative and the descriptions gave a good idea of what the drink would taste like (crucial!) Priced between Rs 300 – Rs 375 they were reasonable too.

A big letdown was that they only served Sula wine and no other brand of Indian wine, which is sad because with the great selection of meats there, a good York Shiraz would have gone very well.

And now we come to the important part. The Food!

All Stir Fry is famous for its delicious Wok which priced at Rs 420 (with taxes) is one of the best deals in the city. It combines a buffet experience with a live kitchen and you can choose from different types of noodles and a wide variety of meats (lamb, beef, chicken, pork, salami, chicken salami) seafood (squid, prawns, fishcakes) and a HUGE selection of vegetables. They have other condiments like eggs, tofu and paneer too.

Some of their vegetable offerings include Pak choy, spinach, button mushrooms, baby corn, corn, spring onions, French beans, Chinese cabbage, broccoli and more.

Once you fill your bowl you go to the live kitchen where you can choose from a variety of sauces (categorized by the level of spice) and condiments (garlic, chilli flakes, crushed peanuts etc)

Again I must pay tribute to the menu which specifies what sauce goes well with different types of meat/vegetables.

Now of course you can order whatever combination that you like but here are some of my favorites.

Non – Spicy: This one works well with chicken. The spring onions and cabbage add a nice crunch which offsets the sweet sauce nicely. Chicken, Chinese cabbage, spring onions, paneer, mushrooms and noodles with ginger oyster sauce and garlic flakes are a good combination.

Spicy: This one’s good for beef/lamb. The pak choy and spinach absorb some of the heat and the crushed peanuts add a nice texture. Beef, pak choy, baby corn, spinach, mushrooms, onions with Takkoe sauce and crushed peanuts is a good mix.

Very Spicy (also my favorite): Keep this one simple. Pak choy and mushrooms absorb the spices nicely. Beef, pak choy, onions, mushrooms with Devil sauce and crushed peanuts is like finding heaven!

For each of the woks, I recommend the noodles, not the ultra thin or the pasta.
This is one of my favorite restaurants as it works very well for lunch or dinner.

Today’s Tip: My take on vodka and tang. It’s another Matheran recipe.

This is really simple and I don’t know why more people don’t do this.

Ingredients:

1. A packet of orange tang
2. A big (preferably glass) jug
3. A bottle of any decent vodka. NOT Smirnoff (Absolut is good)
4. Lots of ice
5. Water or soda according to preference.
6. 4 lemons

Method:

1. Pour as much tang as you like into the Jug, I use 4 tablespoons
2. Pour in your vodka, half a bottle is good
3. Stir well
4. Add juice from 3 lemons
5. Stir again
6. Fill your jug with water or soda
7. Add the juice from the 4th lemon
8. Stir again
9. Add your Ice
10. Ready to serve

Vodka tang is really good on a hot summer day. I prefer it with soda but it’s as good with water and the lemon gives it a really good zing. Try it out and tell me what you think!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Gourmet's Circle

The Gourmet’s Circle

Everyone likes eating good food. It’s an unavoidable fact of life like income tax or corruption!

Unfortunately, like most other unavoidable facts of life, eating really good food at good restaurants comes at a price!

In case I haven’t made it clear in my earlier post, I REALLY like good steak.

The cost of a top-class steak can range anywhere between Rs 600 to Rs 2,500 depending on whether you go to The Zodiac Grill or Blue Frog. Honorable mentions should go to Yellow Tree Café and Hard Rock Café which have decent steaks for around Rs 400.

Eating well however doesn’t have to be so expensive. All you need is a bit of innovation, a bit of creation, a love for cooking and a really good appetite! You also need really good friends, which brings us to the subject of “The Gourmet’s Circle.” Some of my closest friends who share a love for good food coupled with a horror for paying exorbitant rates in restaurant’s (unless accompanied by parents) meet up every month with the sole aim of drinking cheap wine, munching on homemade dip and wafers and cooking a decent meal of steak and mashed potato.

We take turns to act as host, (quite easy, host brings food everyone else brings dessert, wine, wafers etc.) and then we all cook. It’s awesome fun; three people, a whole lot of steak and tons of the most delicious garlicy, buttery, cheesy (and occasionally vodkaey) mashed potato, some garlic bread and a LOT of wine.

The steak can be bought from various places in the city; they all have really good beef.

1. Sante’s – Pali Naka, Bandra(really expensive but delicious)
2. Nature’s basket – Hill Road, Bandra (rib-eye costs Rs 600/KG and its awesome)
3. Farm Products – Colaba (reasonable and very good)

To complete our perfect evening the last time we met, we played loud music, drank a lot of wine (repeating myself am I) and ate a lovely cake prepared by one of our number (whose cakes look almost as good as she does, don’t know how she tastes but the cake was WOW!) I got the ice cream and all in all we had an AWESOME time.

The second meeting of The Gourmet’s Circle is this Friday, I will update the blog with the culinary delights we had soon after.

Tip of the Day

Today’s tip: The recipe for my Matheran Mashed potatoes.
We made this in my house in Matheran (a small hill station outside Bombay) using everything we could find, and it turned out to be really good. We had a version of it at our Gourmet’s Circle and it was much appreciated (well you can’t go wrong with so much butter and cream can you?)


Matheran Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients

8 Potatoes

4 Cloves of Garlic

1/2 Kg of Butter

4 Slices of Cheese

5 tablespoons of Vodka

4 Cups of Milk

1 Cup of Cream


Method

• Peel, boil and mash the potatoes

• Crush garlic till it forms a paste

• Add milk

• Add Butter

• Add Garlic

• Add Cream

• Put the mixture on the boil and add the cheese when it’s hot, keep stirring until the cheese melts

• Add Vodka

• Add salt to taste

• Wait till the potatoes have cooked and serve hot.

Viola! Instant cholesterol!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Food

Food!

No one can live without it, and almost everyone likes it.

I live in Bombay, which is a foodie’s paradise.

The food the city offers ranges from sev puri at a tiny thela or cart to a steak in wine sauce at one of the most prestigious restaurants in the city.

I will be doing two or more blogs a week as time permits. My blogs will contain a food/drink tip at the end. Do leave a comment and let me know if you liked it or if you have any suggestions.

Today's tip: The steak with spinach risotto at Moshe's

The steak is cooked to perfection, with the thin red line present in every good steak. It has the right amount of juice and isn’t tough (unlike most steaks in the city.) Creamy yet not too heavy, the spinach risotto is a perfect accompaniment to the steak. The crisps add just the right amount of crunch synonymous with every good steak dish.

Hope you enjoyed this entry, I promise the next one will be bigger.