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Treats that melt in the mouth... mildly


THEY HAD to drive down to Sadar Bazar to get just the right kind of gold varq for the sweet dish. They had to go to schools across Delhi at the recess hour to get to the fruit vendors selling `kamraq'. They had to tone down the spice element without compromising on the essential taste of the time-tested Mughlai dishes now favoured by foreigners too. All this to make the Kebab and Biryani Festival at The Park in New Delhi a grand success. Apparently, their efforts have borne fruit in more ways than one.

On till this coming Saturday at The Portico restaurant, the festival is the brainchild of Chef Bakshish Dean, who has taken liberties with the original ingredients of kababs but not quite compromised on the taste. The chef recommends - and we second - Patte Mein Gelawati kabab. They are spiced tender lamb mince wrapped in banana leaf. Though age-old Kakori Kabab and Hakeemi Gosht Ke Pasande - said to be useful in digestion - are there too, do try out Shish Kabab, not to be confused with Shammi Kabab. Add suitable chutneys that add to the flavour.

On to the chicken fare, lay your hands on Kagaz Ka Murgh. It is different from what you get elsewhere, is softer and melts in your mouth. Comprising diced chicken marinated with herbs, it is easily the highlight of the fare which also offers biryani of different types. Feel free to try them as they are low on spices. A novelty here is Murgh Kofta Biryani which however fails to make a dent with the connoisseurs simply because the taste of kofta does not come through without gravy. There is Shahjahani Biryani prepared with milk and nuts but a preferable alternative is Hyderabadi Gosht Biryani. It is only mild, not bland.

Round off the meal with a delicious Shahi Tukda but make sure to count your calories here.

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