Monday, April 6, 2020

A vegetarian lunch at Tikal, Guatemala- by K J S Chatrath

I visited 5 central American countries with a Group in 2018. The trip was to start from Antigua, Guatemala. I reached there 4 days in advance as I was very keen to visit Tikal, a UNESCO Heritage site having Mayan pyramids and other archeological wonders.

I took a one day return trip from Antigua and was in Tikal by around 10 am...After hectic walking to see this breathtaking site, we were taken for lunch in a restaurant located inside the archeological zone. Lunch was included in the price of the trip. I had signalled before hand that I was a vegetarian. The lunch was served. While the non-vegetarians got a sumptuous  main dish, what I got as the main vegetarian dish reinforced my view that this world is a very unequal place.


 Main dish for the vegetarians
 Something like sauce (chutney)

I am of the strong unshakable belief that Indian cuisine is the best in the world and what is called a bon repas by the Westerners is nothing but a plate of  bland, boiled half cooked stuff - but beautifully decorated.

No, not for me.

Monday, November 4, 2019

'Under the shade of a bunyan tree...' - by K J S Chatrath

My part time cooking help took a day off. I didn't get upset at all. I just took out my car and drove to one of my my favourite eating places in Panchkula. The place has no name. Food is served from a stationary van and the 'tandoor' nearby allows you to see how fresh the roti is. Needless to say that the tandoori rotis are topped with yellow butter.

 The food is served under a bunyan tree on 'jugaad' tables.

And yes, it is tasty and inexpensive. Costs Rs.50. And no tip to be given.

Statutory Warning: Those with a fetish for cleanliness and those having poor stomachs may do well to use discretion

Important Advisory: Please carry your own drinking water.

 Bon apetit and Bon courage!

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Saturday, July 27, 2019

'Breakfast at Tiffany's ?' - by K J S Chatrath

A dear friend asked me this morning if I had finished my breakfast. Yes, was my reply, adding that it being a Sunday morning  I had gone out for breakfast. Ah, so you had breakfast at Tiffany's, poked my friend. No, I had breakfast at Anupam's, I snapped back. 
 One may recall that Breakfast at Tiffany's was a 1961 American romantic comedy based on Truman Capote's novella, and starring Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard. The movie had won two Academy Awards.

In 2012, the film was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry.

I remember that when this film was released in New Delhi, Laguna- the most chic restaurant of those days located on Janpath, had come out with an ad, "Breakfast at Tiffany's, but lunch at Lagunas". Those were the days...   ...

                                                       Anupam's, Sector 11, Panchkula.

 My breakfast. They make it only on Sunday mornings and there generally is quite a rush there.

 Bon apetit!

Sunday, July 14, 2019

'Roti or tortilla' - by K J S Chatrath

This photo was taken in the interiors of the Salta Province of Argentina in 2017. But hey, how come you have a chappati (roti) in your lap, you are sure to ask. is 'tortilla' the pancake eaten routinely in the Latin American countries. In fact tortillas are also made in homes and then supplied to the restaurants for serving.These are also made in the bakeries, as those below:
Weather it is roti or tortilla, depends on weather you are in India or in one of the Latin American countries even though there are some differences in the process of making, flour used and the method of eating.

Rotis/chappatis that I had in an Egyptian restaurant on the outskirts of Cairo in 2012.

 And the real Indian  things- this one is a baked in a clay oven (tandoor) and is called tandoori roti.

Can we not say, Hum Ek Hain or we are all ONE!

I would invite you to see my other posts on this subject:

'Indian roti/chappati/phulka?' -  by K.J.S.Chatrath;


Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Saturday, June 22, 2019

'Who else but the Punjabis?' - by K J S Chatrath

Who else can think of organising a thali meal with 30 dishes and weighing 25 kg- Only Us Punjabis!

There is a new restaurant which believes in the Punjabi liking for stuffing guests with 'Hore Ji' (Take some more Sir Ji/Madam Ji) till they start shouting  'Bus Ji'- No More!

No, I have not yet visited this restaurant and what I am saying is only hearsay. It is a restaurant called Mellow Garden and is located in Rajouri Garden in  Delhi.

One must clarify that it is not a round thali. It is a hexagonal one that reportedly  weighs 25 kgs comprises starters, main course, assorted rotis, lassi, buttermilk and desserts.  This all-in-one package is available in four versions; Satrangi Punjabi Veg, Satrangi Punjabi Non-veg, Chinjabi Veg and Chinjabi Non-veg. From kurkure dahi kebabs, tandoori chilli chicken, Amritsari aloo and Punjabi kadhai kumbh to pind wala shahi paneer, gobhi matar adraki and kesari pheerni.

The thali serves upto 4 people and  provides unlimited helpings. (Please do check this up before ordering)

Oye Balle Balle Ji!

Mellow Garden,   J2/7, 2nd & 3rd Floor, BK Dutta Market, Rajouri Garden, New Delhi
 11:30AM - 11PM.  Cost: INR 1,600 (Veg) & INR 2,000 (Non-Veg) Please do check up the price before ordering. 

(Write up with inputs from the website of the restaurant and