Flavours of the South
Tuck into dishes you've only heard about till now at the South Indian Food festival
Enjoying the South Indian delicacies Pics: K.Ananthan
MENTION SOUTH Indian food and people from other parts of the country tend to think only of countless varieties of dosas, idlis and traditional meals with the staple sambar-rasam-curd. But the cuisine has lots to offer. Only, you might get to taste it if you chance to visit homes where traditional food still rules.
The ongoing South Indian food fest at The Residency brings to you an assortment of authentic regional delicacies from Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala. Items like the spicy Murangakkai soup and karuvepailai soup will definitely interest hard-core vegetarians.
The former is a watery version of the usual sambar, but the use of additional spices gives it a different taste.
Non-vegetarians can start off with the hot and spicy Kozhi milagu saaru.
The chicken extract combined well with black pepper, coriander and other spices. Curry leaves and shredded chicken offset the spiciness.
In starters, there is beetroot pakoda, which tastes ordinary. But, the Makachola vada is a must try.
It retains the freshness of corn and the crispness of a masala vada and is the brainchild of K. Sakthivel, sous chef.
For the main course, we opt for plain rice and desi parotta. In the gravy section, the tomato batagali koora (prepared with spinach and tomato) is a must-try.
The addition of tomato and tamarind lends it a delightful sourness, but the flavour of spinach comes through well. Kayaralu egguru, an Andhra delicacy prepared with boiled potatoes and peas coated with besan, makes for a great combo with rice. The chaembu kalan from Kerala is enjoyable.
There is also the slightly tartly mavadikaai pappu (dhal with mango) and erulli kar pulusu (pulikuzhambu). Bagharigai gajar, boiled carrot tossed in ghee with coconut gratings, one of the poriyals on offer, is good too.
The mutton uppukari, a Chettinad delicacy, true to its name, was a bit salty. The thin gravy goes well with the items in the main course. The miriyalu kodi koora, an Andhra special, is a must try. What makes all the difference is the addition of pacha morpa kayulu (bajji milagai).
Neither spicy nor bland, the flavour of the milagaai is retained.
The dhaniya-rich malli kozhi varuval is scrumptious. The taste of dhaniya lingers on for long after you finish your meal.
To end the meal on a sweet note, there is an assortment of traditional desserts on offer. Choose from ada pradhaman, Tirunelveli halwa and other delicacies.
The fest is open for dinner from 7.30 p.m. till midnight till November 28.
On Sunday, it is also open for lunch. For bookings, contact 0422-2201234.
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