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Beckoning buffets

T.SARAVANAN has a taste of `Biriyani Bistro'

Pic: by K. Ganesan

Dishing out the delicious

FOR THOSE blessed with a taste for variety, here is a wonderful opportunity beckoning. From Chinese to Chettinad, Malabar to Gujarathi - the appetising experience is on for a month at Hotel Madura Park.

Stashed with essential ingredients that make food festivals attractive for food buffs, this one is not a daily affair, however.

"Tongue Ticklers" - launched on March 26th and that will go on till April 24th - is only a "Saturday-Sunday excitement", meant to cash in on the weekend mood of the public.

The "Chinese Chow Mein" fare kicked off the festival last month and gourmets to their delight found an exalting range of Chinese food to choose from.

This past weekend, focus shifted to "Biriyani Bistro" and what a culinary affair it was! The entire ambience of the hotel changed to reflect and suit the mood of the festival.

Biriyani delicacies

Staff adorning attires like Hyderabad Nizams welcomed guests at the hotel entrance while inside the dining hall, waiters did their job with a flair donning traditional lungies, shirts and caps.

From Peshawari to Bengali, from Dindigul to Vaniyambadi, the multiple flavours of the biriyani drew customers in good numbers. The Prawns and Fish biriyani particularly found an overwhelming number of takers.

"Fish biriyani is my own recipe. Generally the fish odour does not go well with most of customers. So I went for a special preparation to avoid the strong smell and prepared the biriyani with `Vajram' variety fish," says K. Dhandapani, Souz Chef with much content.

Chef's special

The grilled and cooked full goat, `Oozy' (that is how the chef calls it), too got a good number of attenders. "The goat is marinated with a mixture papaya, ginger-garlic paste, salt, lemon juice and cooked in a double boiler stove.

Then all spices are added including chilli and coriander powder, garam masala, gingelly oil, curry leaves, green chillies, onion and tomatoes" - thats the recipe of Oozy, according to the chef.

"Originally we were planning to display only seven varieties but had to change our programme at the last minute given the public response and finally laid out 15 biriyani varieties," says A. Sivakumar, Regional Sales Manager.

Basically, the festival had an array of non-vegetarian cuisines.

But the organisers did well to cater to the needs of their vegetarian customers, by offering them items like "Bread and Meal Maker Biriyani'.

The Chicken home-style gravy, mutton dalcha, went well with the biriyani varieties, as much as did the vegetarian raitha, vegetarian kurma and `ennai kathirikkai' (brinjal dish).

"We planned this festival after assessing last year's visitors' feedback. Every time we conduct a festival we expect a good crowd.

Last year we never anticipated such a support for the `Flavours of India'. So we were quite well prepared this time," says Sivakumar.

In the following weeks, the Hotel has planned `Chettinad Samayal' (April 9 and 10), `Malabar Sadya' (April 16 and 17) and the extravaganza comes to an end with the exclusive vegetarian food festival of `Gujarathi Bhojan' on April 23 and 24.

Since many people will be on lent during Chithirai Festival, the vegetarian varieties have been particularly slated for April 23 and 24. So whether you want to tickle your tongue with `Meen Gazana' (Chettinad) or `Chemmeen Manoranjan' (Malabar), be sure to be at the Hotel Madura Park these next three weekends.

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