This British Colonial Report Offers a Rare Glimpse Into India's Historic Cannabis Cuisine

This British Colonial Report Offers a Rare Glimpse Into India’s Historic Cannabis Cuisine

This British Colonial Report Offers a Rare Glimpse Into India’s Historic Cannabis Cuisine And a description of some very stoned canines. May 09, 2019 This British Colonial Report Offers a Rare Glimpse Into India’s Historic Cannabis Cuisine In the 1790 painting Bhang Eaters Before Two Huts , by Pemji, a group of men mix and consume bhang. San Diego Museum of Art/Public Domain Thick, sugary, and creamy, rich with saffron and almonds, bhang thandai is so sweet that at first it’s hard to pinpoint the drink’s secret ingredient. After a sip or two, however, the telltale taste lingers: spicy and slightly musky, it’s the signature whiff of cannabis. After a few minutes, the high comes, dreamy as the rainbow play of Holi colors. An Indian festival staple, drunk especially during North Indian Holi celebrations, bhang thandai is part of a long history of South Asian cannabis culture. Mentions of cannabis in South Asia date back to at least around 1500 BC, where it makes an appearance as one of five sacred plants in the Atbarva Veda . Beloved by Sikh soldiers and Mughal kings , cannabis has also long been part of spiritual practice across South Asian religions, from Shiva devotees who smoke the god’s treasured herb, to Sufi seekers who use hashish as a tool to unite with the divine. Today, bhang recipes are widely available, and the drink, made from the leaves of the plant, is legal and broadly accepted. Yet British colonialism dramatically shaped modern attitudes toward cannabis in South Asia and, in turn, around the world. An ascetic devotee of Lord Shiva smokes ganja from a traditional clay chillum . Abhishek Singh/CC BY-SA 2.0 William Brooke O’Shaughnessy could have given you a bhang recipe or two. In early 1830s England, O’Shaughnessy, a young Edinburgh graduate, had gained recognition as a clever chemist. But when he found himself unable to acquire his license in London, he followed in the footsteps of many a young British lad unsure of his next step, and hightailed it to the colonies . At that time, India was still controlled by the East India Company; it wouldn’t be officially “transferred” to the British crown until 1858 . But in the colonial capital of Calcutta, British elites, often in collaboration with elite classes of Indians, had embarked on a grand scholarly mission. Their aim was to learn everything possible about the subcontinent, from its history and languages to its flora and fauna, in order to better understand—and thus, better control—the Indian population. O’Shaughnessy, the bright, young Irish physician, was no different. Upon his arrival in Calcutta, he took up a post at the Medical College Hospital, where he turned his attention to studying a unique aspect of Indian medical and culinary culture: cannabis. Portrait of William O’Shaughnessy demonstrating instruments. U.S. National Library of Medicine/Public Domain At the time, cannabis use was uncommon in England, and British colonials regarded the drug with suspicion. They had long feared that cannabis could cause madness, and 19th-century colonizers considered its use a threat to colonial power. “Murderous assaults by individuals under the influence of Indian hemp have been somewhat frequent,” declared one Bombay newspaper in 1885 . As a result of this violent influence, an Allahabad newspaper opined, “The lunatic asylums of India are filled with Ganja smokers.” This was true, but not necessarily because the drug caused madness. Instead, officials running “native-only” colonial asylums sometimes admitted Indian people suspected of being habitual ganja smokers for the mere fact that the system regarded them as unruly. But British colonials were interested in anything that could yield knowledge about the colonized population. So in the 1830s, O’Shaughnessy set out on a rigorous program of research, detailing his inquiries in his 1842 The Bengal Dispensatory . Drawing from interviews with Indian colleagues, The Bengal Dispensatory provided—among descriptions of hemp plants and hemp-related literature in Sanskrit, Arabic, and Persian—several cannabis recipes detailed enough for an ambitious home chef to attempt today. Cannabis shop in Khandesh, India, late-19th century. Report of the Indian Hemp Drugs Commission/Public Domain To make sidhee, subjee, or bhang —drinkable cannabis preparations similar to bhang thandai—O’Shaughnessy writes: “About three tola weight [of hemp seeds] are well washed with cold water, then rubbed to powder, mixed with black pepper, cucumber, and melon seeds, sugar, half a pint of milk, and an equal quantity of water. This is considered sufficient to intoxicate an habituated person. Half the quantity is enough for a novice.” He provides similarly detailed descriptions of majoon , or ma’jun , a cannabis-infused milk-based sweet that was a favorite intoxicant of the Mughal emperor Humayun . After providing a recipe for weed ghee that would make any contemporary brownie-baker proud, O’Shaughnessy details, “The operator then takes two pounds of sugar … when the sugar dissolves and froths, two ounces of milk are added; a thick scum rises and is removed.” Finally, the chef adds the cannabis butter, pours and cools the mixture on a pan, cuts it into small slabs, and enjoys. While O’Shaughnessy labels the consumption of these delicacies a “vice,” he also notes that the effect of bhang intoxication is “of the most cheerful kind, causing the person to sing and dance, to eat food with great relish, and to seek aphrodisiac enjoyments.” Glasses of bhang thandai in Varanasi, India. Satish Krishnamurthy/CC BY 2.0 O’Shaughnessy would know. Aside from collecting cannabis recipes, he decided to run experiments to understand the effects of the drug first-hand. From his post in the Medical College Hospital, O’Shaughnessy recruited patients (sometimes with dubious ethical standards: his subjects included children and some very stoned dogs) to be part of what Sujaan Mukherjee, a research scholar at Kolkata’s Jadavpur University, argues were the first clinical marijuana experiments of modern Western medicine . In articles published between 1839 and 1843, he details the results of his investigations into the potential of cannabis to treat seizures, rheumatism, and cholera. His study notes are high comedy. Half an hour after giving a dose of Nepalese hash, dissolved in spirits, to a “middling sized dog,” O’Shaughnessy records , the dog “became stupid and sleepy, dozing at intervals, starting up, wagging his tail as if extremely contented, he ate some food greedily.” Besides puppies with the munchies, O’Shaughnessy gave his tincture to several human subjects, one of whom “became talkative and musical, told several stories, and sang songs to a circle of highly delighted auditors.” Intriguingly, O’Shaughnessy found that hemp was effective in treating “infantile convulsions”—over 170 years before the U.S. Food and Drug Administration came to a similar conclusion. Bhang ki patti ka peda , milk sweets made with cannabis, are still made and eaten in South Asia today. Vashisthapathak2015/CC BY-SA 4.0 By the 1894 publication of the British government’s Report of the Indian Hemp Drugs Commission , the notion that cannabis caused murderous madness had been partly put to rest. Analyzing the results of a survey of over 1,000 British and Indian sources across the subcontinent, the Report concluded that while “it may be accepted as reasonably proved in the absence of other cause that hemp drugs do cause insanity,” cannabis consumption could be acceptable in moderation. “As a rule,” the report concluded, “these drugs do not tend to crime and violence.” In the final decades of their reign, the British government, considering cannabis use too culturally significant to ban and too difficult to regulate, put their attempts to outlaw the drug to rest. Yet the legacy of Western ambivalence toward marijuana would come back to haunt South Asian countries even after they gained independence. Western skepticism toward cannabis, which countries like the United States and Britain associated with populations of color , persisted after decolonization. In 1961, the World Health Organization commissioned the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs , part of the worldwide push toward narcotics prohibition. Classifying cannabis in the most dangerous and restricted category, the Convention perpetuated Western beliefs about the dangers of marijuana—in contrast to protest from South Asian signatories, who reserved the right to regulate cannabis on their own terms. Today, Indian law reflects a kind of compromise, influenced by both global drug policy and the historical belief of some elite Indians that edibles are more socially acceptable than smoking . Consuming the leaves of the marijuana plant, used to make bhang, is legal throughout much of India, but smoking the resin and buds is mostly forbidden. Portrait of Rawat Gokal Das Celebrating ‘holi’ with his consorts , by Rajput painter Bagta, dated 1808. Bagta/Public Domain This ambiguous legal status hasn’t stopped the popularity of South Asian cannabis culture. From the smoky ablutions of wandering Shaivite sadhus to everyday ganja smoking on the street, from tall glasses of bhang lassi to rose-scented thandai, cannabis continues to enjoy an exalted position in many South Asian communities. With marijuana legalization leading to a rise in cannabis cuisine across the United States, it seems that—almost 200 years after William O’Shaughnessy compiled his rudimentary cannabis cookbook—the West may have finally caught up.
Gastro Obscura covers the world’s most wondrous food and drink.

Read More…

Jozi Urban Market opens at Golf Reef City

Jozi Urban Market opens at Golf Reef City May 10, 2019 by Jacob MAWELA Tweet “PLEASE GIVE me your feedback when you’re done,” ventured Allesha Chetty with a grin – a cross between knowing and teasing – as she watched me walking away from her stall, armed with a red-&-white striped box containing a slice of her signature chocolate Lindt cake, high up on the covered parking lot of the Gold Reef City Casino overlooking the M1 South motorway!
This scene unfolded on a balmy, Fall Sunday afternoon on the resort’s rooftop as I made my way to a dining area whilst the live soothing jazzy sounds of a recording artist going by the identity, Guru (real name Mpho Matlala) made moonwalk of my haste to indulge that born-with-and-will-die-by sweet tooth lure of mine!
Swell ambience that take is playing itself out at as far as welcomes go – for this is the south of the city of gold’s addition to the trend of “ how was your weekend?”
The inaugural Jozi Urban Market – is the brainchild of bubbly blonde go-getter event organizer, Tandi Potgieter.
Walking the market floor’s length and breadth, adorned in a green, flowing full-length dress, she commanded an air reminiscent of the 1950’s poster depicting a lady defiantly flexing a bicep whilst registering a deadpan facial expression declaring: We Can Do It! Only, Potgieter came across as the friendly and accommodative type, as she made sure that every stallholder’s comfortability level remained in the “business-is-good” region.
The new market’s take-off meets the objectives of an entity she happens to be a brand ambassador of named Southern Joburg Business and Tourism Forum – whose aim it is “to have people from the south staying in the south, and not have to travel too far out” from their neck of the hood.
Their partnership with the entertainment group which Potgieter referred to as ‘one of the Jewels of the South’ was motivated by the venue’s accessibility to visitors from places such as Soweto, the north and from wherever – thereby creating a multi-cultural rendezvous where they could enjoy a lovely atmosphere of good food, craft beers, drinks, unique stalls and something for everybody on a Sunday!
The casino’s management, she added, instantly bought into her proposal entailing the encouragement of people having to make a living – as well as the idea of giving another reason for the community to gather under their umbrella, and thus translating into an increase in visitors.
Simultaneously walking and working the parking space, the verdict became one of a balanced market offering a fair amount of wares ranging from leather handbags, home décor with functionality elements (such as the colourful enamel mugs depicting wildlife at the Lumela Afrika stall), curios (beaded necklaces and scarves), Millennials lifestyle wear, bottled olives, wine-tasting-and-sales station, craft beers on tap (flowing with ice-cold flavours such as pale ale, lager and raspberry Weiss), an oyster bar (offering a combo of oysters and a range of top-brand bubbly – in addition to tequila oyster shots), a bread stall (where you could purchase GMO-free artisan bread made from unbleached stone ground flour full of vitamins, enzymes, fibre & nutrients, from The Bread Guy), a cheesery (selling platters comprising of various cheeses, dried fruit and crackers), a gourmet coffee trailer, etc.
A substantial number of vendors dealing in multicultural cuisine, others’ presentations were unavoidably eye-catching, such as the eerily-named, Death Star Canteen – and whose stall décor of the menacing Darth Vader’s familiar mask didn’t appear to scare gourmands away! With straight-out-of-the-movie payoff lines, although a tad tweaked, such as, “ sabre the taste ” and “ may the sauce be with you” – those who dared to venture into the gastronomic dark side could be enticed in lamb sabre wraps setting one’s pocket back at R100 to Death Star Fried Ice Cream salivating for R40 a helping!
Touted as a social space considerate of the family environment touch, the market also has a Free Kids Zone with the requisite jumping castle from where issued forth incessant noise trademarked of carefreeness!
Adjacent was located a photo booth wall displaying the Jozi Urban Market signage – from which attendees could have their snaps recorded. Whilst all of this laid-back activity continued unfolding, groups of excitable kids followed a busker on stilts and elevated to the rooftop parking’s rafters. The poor costume-clad fellow had to repeatedly bend down to give out balloons every time he had completed constructing one for the mites!
Since the media invite didn’t only exact a toiling angle to my sojourn at the market, I then, like other jovial visitors, accorded myself a moment to step back and soak in the south of Joburg’s sun from a vantage point which had me pitying the vehicular traffic racing to-and-fro the freeway below – deeming that they knew not what they were missing skywards!
To the accompaniment of Guru’s Wurlitzer electronic piano’s riffs, every bite and chew (or is it melt) of the death-by-chocolate indulgence from Chetty’s Bibbidi Bobbidi stall was further and further propelling my tastebuds into the zenith of Nirvana!
Juxtaposed to the jazz dude, I admired how he cut a swanky figure, with a smoke pipe dangling from a corner of his mouth whilst he wreaked havoc on them ivories on a George Benson Love time Love standard his fingers had put their own appropriation to.
The pianist wasn’t the only act providing live music at the market though. A 10-piece marimba band a short while later had the visitors, as well as a sizable number of the casino’s staff, getting down to some real gumba beats!
At the dining area, an off-duty colleague only identified as Thuli sat alongside her son, Owami, nursing cocktails and taking-in the atmosphere around.
Describing herself as a regular market-goer -such as the Fourways one (with which she could draw an informed comparison) – she let spill of her objections of the debutante. According to her, since the new venture claimed to cater for southern Joburgers (whose demography comprise of Sowetans and Indians in the main), it had to reflect in the kind of cuisine on offer – as well as the pricing.
Mentioning provisions of offerings such as bunny chows and questioning the reason behind expecting visitors from this side of town to afford a slice of cake selling for R50 – the manageress sounded to have points Potgieter could well pause to ponder!
With Potgieter’s intention of growing the market from an initial 30 stallholders (who each have to part with R500 for every market day) to 120 – hopefully Thuli’s wishes will be granted in due course.
To be held on every first Sunday of the month from 10h00 to 15h00 on the 5 th floor covered car park rooftop of the Casino, entry is free with visitors only having to fork out R20 to enter the Casino’s ample and secure parking.
Image Jacob MAWELA (Gold Reef’s Comm Manager Danelle Coulson and event organiser Tandi Potgieter bade the green light to the commencement of the Jozi Urban Market at the Casino resort’s parking). Leave a Reply

Read More…

Brave Adults on Brave Kids, chapter 1: Ashu

Serena Aznar Ballarin Brave Adults on Brave Kids, chapter 1: Ashu For the first chapter of “Brave Adults on Brave Kids”, we have a very special text and poem written by the wonderful Ashu Satvika Goyal, Nanhi Dunya ‘s group leader, whose group participated in Brave Kids Ukraine and Brave Kids Przemyśl 2018: My name is Ashu Satvika Goyal and I was the group leader of children who participated in brave kids 2018 from Nanhi Dunya (‘The International Movement of Children & their Friends’) India. Brave Kids gave a golden opportunity to Nanhi Dunya Rangshala to be a part of the Brave Kids Cultural Educational Program in Ukraine and Poland. It was a wonderful experience for me and for my group, as it was their first visit to a land, which was far from their home; where the language, lifestyle, food, religion and culture was very different. In this trip they learnt to communicate without knowing the language, experienced cuisine which was very different, learnt about different lifestyles of people, made lifelong friends and learnt to teach and acquire knowledge from other children. One of the most amazing things was that host families cared for the children as if they were their own. They were dropped for workshops on time, taken for shopping, attended concerts, went for parties and functions, cooked Indian food, sang, danced & were provided with the best environment to make them feel at home. Kids from host families gave their personal rooms to the Brave Kids. This was highly appreciated and it all led to the formation of one big family. When children leave their homes for the first time without their parents, the first thing that they look for is love and affection; otherwise they will get homesick. But my kids were absolutely happy with their host families. When they were leaving their host families for the second stage they were all in tears as it was so hard to say goodbye. It was a larger than life experience for my kids as they had been waiting for this opportunity form last two years. They did not believe that they are actually flying until the day I gave their tickets in their hands. My youngest kid Divya who was eight years young sat next to me when she took her first flight; she saw mountains and clouds and asked if God stayed there (which is what it’s been told to the children in Indian stories) to which I answered yes indeed. Innocent questions like these made me emotional in my journey. One day I promised my kids I would cook Indian food for them and they got so excited. I asked them to come over to my place in Ukraine but the host sister of Poornima told me that she doesn’t feel if Poornima is safe to be left like this (which was so funny, as she felt responsible for Poorima’s safety), though I told her that I need my kids for sometime as I want them to do practice for the performance. Her host sister was sitting outside the house for more than an hour with her boyfriend but didn’t agree to come in or go back to her place (she didn’t speak English so I think she didn’t understand my words but it was hilarious). While I was cooking food, my kids were dancing and peeking through the door to see if she was still there. Finally I cooked food and when the time came to make chapattis (Indian bread) I realized we didn’t have rolling pins so I used an empty glass bottle (which astonished my kids and they laughed head over toes) to give them a round shape. One day I planned a surprise for the children with my host Ihore (from Ukraine) and took all the children from Iran, Poland, India and local Ukrainian host families for horse riding. Most of them sat on a horse for the first time and it was absolutely beautiful to see their face expressions (happy, scared, surprised and magical). In Poland they also got a chance to do ceramic work where they made cups, which were brought to India as a souvenir. I also had an opportunity to do some ceramic work with other group leaders and for me it was like a meditation. We also got opportunity to be part of local radio and news channels. We met some amazing people who motivated us and love was showered upon us from everywhere. Artistic leaders Mary, Liako, Ewa & Lily in the first stage were adored by the kids and they also made my kids feel comfortable, happy and loved. For the second stage they had many wonderful artistic leaders and children with whom they shared their ideas and learnt about their cultures. The only struggle with my group was with food as they all are vegetarian and sometimes it’s hard to get vegetarian food, when children attend workshop for the entire day, they need some cooked food. There were some hard days but when they were with their host families in Poland they had their best time and faced no difficulty with food. Finally, I would like to say thank you for making us a part of Brave Kids. It means lot to us and I don’t think I have enough words to express my feelings of gratitude for the organizers. Last but not the least; I would like to thank Michael and Malika for helping us get our visa and being a great support system. I would like to mention my deepest gratitude to Grzegorz Bral for being so generous & finding Nanhi Dunya’s work special. He is the reason of us being part of Brave Kids, so thank you very much for this beautiful experience it has changed our life, the way we think & acknowledge the world, and has created immense amount of confidence in my children. So thank you once again. (I wrote a small poem; though I am not a poet I just wanted to share my feelings)
Brave kids is a magical experience for children,
It gives you hope and opportunity.
It creates beautiful memories,
It brings lots of positivity.
It creates friends forever,
It gives you confidence to live.
It is a bud which will grow as a flower,
It will be a magic to be seen.
It sow a seed of respecting the cultures,
And eliminate the differences of greed.
It makes you believe that YOU CAN,
Change the world with your abilities.
Brave gives so much to you,
To be together & be true.
Brave makes you feel worthy,
Of being the real you.

Read More…

Mathura: Atul Kochhar to open new restaurant in former Westminster Fire Station

Atul Kochhar prepares a venison dish for the new menu at Kanishka 6/6 Scallops at Kanishka The interior design will be led by Rosendale Design, the company behind the likes of London restaurants The Ninth , Cabotte and The Game Bird . Westminster Fire Station’s redevelopment is a mixed-use residential project lead by property developer Alchemi Group. Kochhar was the first Indian chef in the world to receive a Michelin star, awarded in 2001 to his restaurant Tamarind of Mayfair. He also held a Michelin star at Mayfair restaurant Benares, until his 2018 departure following a row over his comments concerning Muslims in India. Mathura will open at 4 Greycoat Place, Westminster, SW1P 1BN in Autumn 2019 The best Indian restaurants in London 19 show all The best Indian restaurants in London 1/19 Hoppers There’s a reason this place still has hour-long waits on for tables on a daily basis, and its not slow service. This beautiful little restaurant offers delicious Sri Lankan street food at extremely affordable prices, with favourites including the mutton rolls and bone marrow varuval alongside the marinated tamarind and ginger chicken wings – all of which are available on the set menu for £30 per person. The star of the show at this Soho spot is the dish the restaurant is named for – the egg hopper – a fried bowl-shaped beauty made with fermented rice and coconut milk, with a perfectly contained yolk in the middle. Once again, the Sethi family (the group behind Bubbledogs, Gymkhana and Trishna) prove they’re an unstoppable force leading London’s Indian restaurant revolution. 2/19 Bombay Bustle Step inside Bombay Bustle and you’ll be transported to a colonial-era railway carriage – first class, naturally. Inspired by the Dabbawalas of Mumbai – men who traditionally travelled across the city by train to deliver home-cooked meals – Bombay Bustle captures the essence of a rich and vast culinary tradition. Follow the station-style signage to navigate between the bar and dining areas and take a seat in one of the coach-style booths. There you’ll tuck in to some of Mumbai’s most celebrated dishes: opt for the small plates and share as many as you can. Top picks include the rarah keema pao, a richly spiced lamb mince served with a buttered bun, and the masala akuri – spiced scrambled eggs gleaming atop a truffled naan. Save room for the tandoor dishes: the cardamom-spiced murgh malai chicken is a triumph. 3/19 Indian Accent Despite decidedly unassuming appearances – it really just looks like another faintly dull spot for bored Mayfair types – this is an extraordinary place, turning out gorgeous, intensely flavoured plates of food. The first signs of genius come early on, with the tiny bite of blue cheese-filled naan (we asked for a second plate), which are remarkably memorable and impossible to over recommend. The place is full of food that manages to be both earthy and elegant at the same time, at times dazzlingly inventive, other moments reliably comfortable. Portions are small, service is friendly if fussy, but by God the food is delicious. Even their puddings are exceptional and their brunch is likely the most interesting in London. Neither of these things is usual for an Indian restaurant – but then Indian Accent isn’t usual; it goes beyond than that. A delight. 4/19 Jamavar Mayfair’s Jamavar is another that proves that Indian fine dining in the capital is fiercely good. Much like its contemporaries, the venue has a colonial gentlemen’s club feel to it and offers delicately-spiced plates that pack a punch. Highlights include the juicy scallops Bhel with a tamarind and date chutney and the slow cooked Jamavar dal with black lentils. Familiar favourites can be found on the menu too, like the moreish old Delhi butter chicken. 5/19 Cinnamon Bazaar There’s a reason Vivek Singh is one of the capital’s most celebrated Indian chefs and the proof is in the pudding. Everything here from food to decor is built to resemble the vibrancy and energy of ancient and modern bazaars located along old trading routes. Something that follows through in the food, which fuses both east and west with dishes such as a lamb roganjosh shepherd’s pie and Vindaloo of ox cheek with masala mash. 6/19 Dishoom Dishoom is rightly regarded a staple of London life, even though just eight years have passed since its first Bombay Cafe opened in Covent Garden. The group’s monopoly of the casual, quality dining scene spans five London branches and another two in Edinburgh and Manchester. Be sure to try the mahi tikka (grilled, marinated fish) and okra fries as part of a sharing-plate meal. Meanwhile the chole poori (puffed, fried bread with chickpea curry) makes a cheap and hearty lunch for one. The real standouts are the black daal and the breakfast bacon naan, both of which have achieved legendary status and have the lamb chops too, which deserve to be similarly revered. Dishoom 7/19 Darjeeling Express This place has come a long way since serving Indian food to 12 supper club guests in Wood Green. Six years on, the location may have changed – they now boast a permanent site in Kingly Court – but the food is as good as ever. None of the team are trained chefs, instead all being amateurs-turned-professionals who learned to cook perfecting long-standing family recipes. This eccentricity might just be why it all works as well as it does. Chef patron Asma Khan’s ever-changing menu has a homely feel to it but no means is lacking in finesse: the Calcutta-Hyderabad-Rajput cooking is all boldly spiced, vigorously flavoured and served in generous portions. It is a bold, lively place where it’s fun to drink up and tuck in. There are stories here; fortunately, you can still book up to hear them. Hear them first hand before next year, when Khan becomes the first British chef to appear on Netflix’s Chef’s Table. Daniel Hambury/Stella Pictures 8/19 Quilon Another star of the capital’s Indian food scene. Chef Sriram Aylur shows consistency is forte as the food is vibrant and delicate with a home-style to it. Standout dishes include their signature fish curry with tender halibut and a creamy-with-a-kick coconut and chilli sauce, as well as the perfectly spiced Mangalorean chicken. 9/19 Cinnamon Kitchen Battersea The Cinnamon Club’s younger, laid back sister offers an alternative set up to its fine dining sibling. The restaurant is the baby of the family and much like its sister branches, chef Vivek Singh has worked wonders with its vibrant menus. The dinner offering is on the meatier side, with a hearty selection of grilled meats and dishes such as the clove-smoked lamb ramp and the fiery rump steak with masala chips. There’s also a plethora of breads to mop up any excess sauce, including four different types of naan; plain, garlic, peshwari and a chicken tikka and cheese. 10/19 Jikoni Granted, this spot isn’t just an Indian restaurant. It specialises in flavours from other parts of Asia too, offering twists on traditional poppadoms and bhajis, but largely boasts a variety of Indian-inspired triumphs. Small plates include the clove-smoked venison samosas with beetroot chutney and larger plates deliver too, like the mutton keema, which is sandwiched between two toasted brioches to form a wildly indulgent Sloppy Joe. Much like the food, the decor is comforting, with mismatched tablecloths and cushions, giving it a relaxed, homely feel. 11/19 Gunpowder Husband and wife team Harneet and Devina Baweja opened this spot back in November 2015 with the help of Mumbai-born head chef Nirmal Save, formerly of Tamarind and Zaika. Nearly three years on and there’s no stopping them: not only did the team launch a cookbook earlier this year but Gunpowder was recognised by Michelin with a Bib Gourmand in 2018, which it retained at the 2019 awards. The the menu offers rich, well-executed, belt-loosening plates that will leave you feeling wholly satisfied and wanting to do it over again. Standout dishes include the charred lamb chops and the chettinad pulled duck. 12/19 Benares “No Indian restaurant in London enjoys a more commanding location or expansive interior,” said the Michelin Guide’s 2019 inspectors, as the place held onto its star for the twelfth year in a row. Expansive, perhaps, but Bernares doesn’t look especially ravishing either inside or out. Still, its polished interior can house up to 300 guests and encompasses four private dining rooms, bar, a main dining room and a lounge, where guests are greeted by a pool of floating flowers. Food here is an inventive blend of quality British ingredients, traditional Indian recipes and contemporary techniques. 13/19 Trishna Unlike some of its competitors, which tend to have a more meaty focus, Trishna celebrates the coastal cuisine of southwest India. The food on the menu pays close attention to coconut and tamarind, and accordingly dishes are fragrant without being overpowering, though they’re brazen with the spice – expect to have your socks very soundly blown off. The tandoor offers a selection of seafood from charred scallops to salmon tikka. 14/19 Gymkhana Gone are the days when Indian restaurants were stereotyped as budget-friendly, BYOB haunts. The capital’s Indian fine dining scene is booming and Mayfair’s Gymkhana is a testament to that. It’s hardly a surprise too, considering the Trishna and Hoppers team are behind it. The venue pays homage to colonial India’s gymkhana clubs – spaces where members of high society would socialise, dine, drink and play sport. Menus here capture the intensity and depth of flavour that north Indian cuisine has to offer, with dishes such as the guinea fowl Tikka and wild muntjac biryani. Bold flavours are the name of the game here, but classics like the chicken butter masala are still on the menu and do not disappoint. No wonder this place has kept its Michelin star four years in a row. 15/19 Kricket It’s always nice to see a pop-up given a permanent site. It’s even nicer to see a former pop-up given a permanent site and then get the recognition it deserves. From humble beginnings of a shipping container in Brixton to retaining its Bib Gourmand twice in a row, Kricket has come a long way and picked up plenty of fans in the process. Its menu is often updated but it remains all about small, seasonal sharing plates and India-inspired cocktails. That said, there are some regulars – the bhel puri and samphire pakora are going nowhere, neither is the keralan fried chicken, all with good reason. The bar serves a rotation of six cocktails, all of which feature delicate, oriental spices; anything with spiced jaggery syrup or darjeeling Bourbon is going to be a hit. 16/19 Brigadiers Inspired by the army mess bars of India, this up-market Indian barbecue joint draws a crowd with its range of entertainment, beers on tap, sports screenings and, most importantly, its small plates. Once you’ve finished playing pool in its art-deco “social hub”, or downed your last pint in the Tap Room tavern, sit down in Brigadiers’ dining room to pour over its extensive menu – their are 16 sides alone. Grill-lovers should try the sikandari kid goat shoulder and the BBQ chicken wings, while those looking for something lighter will enjoy the delicately spiced Indo Chinese chicken lettuce cups. There are plenty of well-crafted vegetarian options, too, such as the gently charred wood fired mushroom methi malai naan and the smoked aubergine missi rotis. If a restaurant can attract crowds to Bank on a weekend, it must be doing something right. Matt Writtle 17/19 Masala Zone Sisters Camellia and Namita Panjabi have decades of research behind them, which rubs off on their authentic food. The menus boast a selection of Indian all-stars from grills, tandoors and curries to vibrant street food. The paneer tikka made with fresh fenugreek leaves and yellow chilli proves that veggie curries can be just as flavoursome and rich as their meaty counterparts. Likewise, the familiar korma gets an upgrade, with saffron infused into it. The thalis, however, are the stars of the show here — various small dishes are served on a circular tray, creating a colourful platter of vegetables, dal, chapati, rice, salad and pickles. With seven different branches across the capital, each site has its own identity and brings something different to the table. The Covent Garden restaurant has puppets hanging from the ceiling while the Bayswater branch has eye-catching graphics plastered over the central dining room pillars. 18/19 Indian Zing This longstanding favourite in Hammersmith offers modern, dynamic Indian food. It’s another fine-dining spot that’s popular with locals and celebs alike (even the late Michael Winner was a fan). A real knowledge of India’s regional cooking shines through at this place, thanks to Mumbai-born chef-patron Manoj Vasaikar. The chicken shatkora lives up to the restaurant’s name with herbs and spices balanced by a punch of zesty citrus, and the lamb dhansak, a speciality of the Mumbai Parsi community, combines traditional flavours with seasonal produce. This restaurant packs out on a regular basis, but the service always remains calm and attentive — the sign of a true gem. 19/19 Chakra This little known Kensington spot is all too often overlooked in lists like these. It’s a fabulous neighbourhood place and appropriately upmarket for Kensington, tucked away opposite the excellent Elephant & Castle. They’ve recently refurbished but the real draw is the terrace space; sit out and tuck into their delicious little bites. It’s the sort of place to order a few glasses of wine while tucking into the likes of truffle Kulcha (addictive bites of wild mushroom & black truffle naan) or monk fish marinated beautifully with kasundi mustard paste. The Lucknowi lamb kebab is a must too. Service is the quiet, friendly type. David Clack 1/19 Hoppers There’s a reason this place still has hour-long waits on for tables on a daily basis, and its not slow service. This beautiful little restaurant offers delicious Sri Lankan street food at extremely affordable prices, with favourites including the mutton rolls and bone marrow varuval alongside the marinated tamarind and ginger chicken wings – all of which are available on the set menu for £30 per person. The star of the show at this Soho spot is the dish the restaurant is named for – the egg hopper – a fried bowl-shaped beauty made with fermented rice and coconut milk, with a perfectly contained yolk in the middle. Once again, the Sethi family (the group behind Bubbledogs, Gymkhana and Trishna) prove they’re an unstoppable force leading London’s Indian restaurant revolution. 2/19 Bombay Bustle Step inside Bombay Bustle and you’ll be transported to a colonial-era railway carriage – first class, naturally. Inspired by the Dabbawalas of Mumbai – men who traditionally travelled across the city by train to deliver home-cooked meals – Bombay Bustle captures the essence of a rich and vast culinary tradition. Follow the station-style signage to navigate between the bar and dining areas and take a seat in one of the coach-style booths. There you’ll tuck in to some of Mumbai’s most celebrated dishes: opt for the small plates and share as many as you can. Top picks include the rarah keema pao, a richly spiced lamb mince served with a buttered bun, and the masala akuri – spiced scrambled eggs gleaming atop a truffled naan. Save room for the tandoor dishes: the cardamom-spiced murgh malai chicken is a triumph. 3/19 Indian Accent Despite decidedly unassuming appearances – it really just looks like another faintly dull spot for bored Mayfair types – this is an extraordinary place, turning out gorgeous, intensely flavoured plates of food. The first signs of genius come early on, with the tiny bite of blue cheese-filled naan (we asked for a second plate), which are remarkably memorable and impossible to over recommend. The place is full of food that manages to be both earthy and elegant at the same time, at times dazzlingly inventive, other moments reliably comfortable. Portions are small, service is friendly if fussy, but by God the food is delicious. Even their puddings are exceptional and their brunch is likely the most interesting in London. Neither of these things is usual for an Indian restaurant – but then Indian Accent isn’t usual; it goes beyond than that. A delight. 4/19 Jamavar Mayfair’s Jamavar is another that proves that Indian fine dining in the capital is fiercely good. Much like its contemporaries, the venue has a colonial gentlemen’s club feel to it and offers delicately-spiced plates that pack a punch. Highlights include the juicy scallops Bhel with a tamarind and date chutney and the slow cooked Jamavar dal with black lentils. Familiar favourites can be found on the menu too, like the moreish old Delhi butter chicken. 5/19 Cinnamon Bazaar There’s a reason Vivek Singh is one of the capital’s most celebrated Indian chefs and the proof is in the pudding. Everything here from food to decor is built to resemble the vibrancy and energy of ancient and modern bazaars located along old trading routes. Something that follows through in the food, which fuses both east and west with dishes such as a lamb roganjosh shepherd’s pie and Vindaloo of ox cheek with masala mash. 6/19 Dishoom Dishoom is rightly regarded a staple of London life, even though just eight years have passed since its first Bombay Cafe opened in Covent Garden. The group’s monopoly of the casual, quality dining scene spans five London branches and another two in Edinburgh and Manchester. Be sure to try the mahi tikka (grilled, marinated fish) and okra fries as part of a sharing-plate meal. Meanwhile the chole poori (puffed, fried bread with chickpea curry) makes a cheap and hearty lunch for one. The real standouts are the black daal and the breakfast bacon naan, both of which have achieved legendary status and have the lamb chops too, which deserve to be similarly revered. Dishoom 7/19 Darjeeling Express This place has come a long way since serving Indian food to 12 supper club guests in Wood Green. Six years on, the location may have changed – they now boast a permanent site in Kingly Court – but the food is as good as ever. None of the team are trained chefs, instead all being amateurs-turned-professionals who learned to cook perfecting long-standing family recipes. This eccentricity might just be why it all works as well as it does. Chef patron Asma Khan’s ever-changing menu has a homely feel to it but no means is lacking in finesse: the Calcutta-Hyderabad-Rajput cooking is all boldly spiced, vigorously flavoured and served in generous portions. It is a bold, lively place where it’s fun to drink up and tuck in. There are stories here; fortunately, you can still book up to hear them. Hear them first hand before next year, when Khan becomes the first British chef to appear on Netflix’s Chef’s Table. Daniel Hambury/Stella Pictures 8/19 Quilon Another star of the capital’s Indian food scene. Chef Sriram Aylur shows consistency is forte as the food is vibrant and delicate with a home-style to it. Standout dishes include their signature fish curry with tender halibut and a creamy-with-a-kick coconut and chilli sauce, as well as the perfectly spiced Mangalorean chicken. 9/19 Cinnamon Kitchen Battersea The Cinnamon Club’s younger, laid back sister offers an alternative set up to its fine dining sibling. The restaurant is the baby of the family and much like its sister branches, chef Vivek Singh has worked wonders with its vibrant menus. The dinner offering is on the meatier side, with a hearty selection of grilled meats and dishes such as the clove-smoked lamb ramp and the fiery rump steak with masala chips. There’s also a plethora of breads to mop up any excess sauce, including four different types of naan; plain, garlic, peshwari and a chicken tikka and cheese. 10/19 Jikoni Granted, this spot isn’t just an Indian restaurant. It specialises in flavours from other parts of Asia too, offering twists on traditional poppadoms and bhajis, but largely boasts a variety of Indian-inspired triumphs. Small plates include the clove-smoked venison samosas with beetroot chutney and larger plates deliver too, like the mutton keema, which is sandwiched between two toasted brioches to form a wildly indulgent Sloppy Joe. Much like the food, the decor is comforting, with mismatched tablecloths and cushions, giving it a relaxed, homely feel. 11/19 Gunpowder Husband and wife team Harneet and Devina Baweja opened this spot back in November 2015 with the help of Mumbai-born head chef Nirmal Save, formerly of Tamarind and Zaika. Nearly three years on and there’s no stopping them: not only did the team launch a cookbook earlier this year but Gunpowder was recognised by Michelin with a Bib Gourmand in 2018, which it retained at the 2019 awards. The the menu offers rich, well-executed, belt-loosening plates that will leave you feeling wholly satisfied and wanting to do it over again. Standout dishes include the charred lamb chops and the chettinad pulled duck. 12/19 Benares “No Indian restaurant in London enjoys a more commanding location or expansive interior,” said the Michelin Guide’s 2019 inspectors, as the place held onto its star for the twelfth year in a row. Expansive, perhaps, but Bernares doesn’t look especially ravishing either inside or out. Still, its polished interior can house up to 300 guests and encompasses four private dining rooms, bar, a main dining room and a lounge, where guests are greeted by a pool of floating flowers. Food here is an inventive blend of quality British ingredients, traditional Indian recipes and contemporary techniques. 13/19 Trishna Unlike some of its competitors, which tend to have a more meaty focus, Trishna celebrates the coastal cuisine of southwest India. The food on the menu pays close attention to coconut and tamarind, and accordingly dishes are fragrant without being overpowering, though they’re brazen with the spice – expect to have your socks very soundly blown off. The tandoor offers a selection of seafood from charred scallops to salmon tikka. 14/19 Gymkhana Gone are the days when Indian restaurants were stereotyped as budget-friendly, BYOB haunts. The capital’s Indian fine dining scene is booming and Mayfair’s Gymkhana is a testament to that. It’s hardly a surprise too, considering the Trishna and Hoppers team are behind it. The venue pays homage to colonial India’s gymkhana clubs – spaces where members of high society would socialise, dine, drink and play sport. Menus here capture the intensity and depth of flavour that north Indian cuisine has to offer, with dishes such as the guinea fowl Tikka and wild muntjac biryani. Bold flavours are the name of the game here, but classics like the chicken butter masala are still on the menu and do not disappoint. No wonder this place has kept its Michelin star four years in a row. 15/19 Kricket It’s always nice to see a pop-up given a permanent site. It’s even nicer to see a former pop-up given a permanent site and then get the recognition it deserves. From humble beginnings of a shipping container in Brixton to retaining its Bib Gourmand twice in a row, Kricket has come a long way and picked up plenty of fans in the process. Its menu is often updated but it remains all about small, seasonal sharing plates and India-inspired cocktails. That said, there are some regulars – the bhel puri and samphire pakora are going nowhere, neither is the keralan fried chicken, all with good reason. The bar serves a rotation of six cocktails, all of which feature delicate, oriental spices; anything with spiced jaggery syrup or darjeeling Bourbon is going to be a hit. 16/19 Brigadiers Inspired by the army mess bars of India, this up-market Indian barbecue joint draws a crowd with its range of entertainment, beers on tap, sports screenings and, most importantly, its small plates. Once you’ve finished playing pool in its art-deco “social hub”, or downed your last pint in the Tap Room tavern, sit down in Brigadiers’ dining room to pour over its extensive menu – their are 16 sides alone. Grill-lovers should try the sikandari kid goat shoulder and the BBQ chicken wings, while those looking for something lighter will enjoy the delicately spiced Indo Chinese chicken lettuce cups. There are plenty of well-crafted vegetarian options, too, such as the gently charred wood fired mushroom methi malai naan and the smoked aubergine missi rotis. If a restaurant can attract crowds to Bank on a weekend, it must be doing something right. Matt Writtle 17/19 Masala Zone Sisters Camellia and Namita Panjabi have decades of research behind them, which rubs off on their authentic food. The menus boast a selection of Indian all-stars from grills, tandoors and curries to vibrant street food. The paneer tikka made with fresh fenugreek leaves and yellow chilli proves that veggie curries can be just as flavoursome and rich as their meaty counterparts. Likewise, the familiar korma gets an upgrade, with saffron infused into it. The thalis, however, are the stars of the show here — various small dishes are served on a circular tray, creating a colourful platter of vegetables, dal, chapati, rice, salad and pickles. With seven different branches across the capital, each site has its own identity and brings something different to the table. The Covent Garden restaurant has puppets hanging from the ceiling while the Bayswater branch has eye-catching graphics plastered over the central dining room pillars. 18/19 Indian Zing This longstanding favourite in Hammersmith offers modern, dynamic Indian food. It’s another fine-dining spot that’s popular with locals and celebs alike (even the late Michael Winner was a fan). A real knowledge of India’s regional cooking shines through at this place, thanks to Mumbai-born chef-patron Manoj Vasaikar. The chicken shatkora lives up to the restaurant’s name with herbs and spices balanced by a punch of zesty citrus, and the lamb dhansak, a speciality of the Mumbai Parsi community, combines traditional flavours with seasonal produce. This restaurant packs out on a regular basis, but the service always remains calm and attentive — the sign of a true gem. 19/19 Chakra This little known Kensington spot is all too often overlooked in lists like these. It’s a fabulous neighbourhood place and appropriately upmarket for Kensington, tucked away opposite the excellent Elephant & Castle. They’ve recently refurbished but the real draw is the terrace space; sit out and tuck into their delicious little bites. It’s the sort of place to order a few glasses of wine while tucking into the likes of truffle Kulcha (addictive bites of wild mushroom & black truffle naan) or monk fish marinated beautifully with kasundi mustard paste. The Lucknowi lamb kebab is a must too. Service is the quiet, friendly type. David Clack

Read More…

NPR Review: ‘Pride, Prejudice And Other Flavors’ : NPR

Pride, Prejudice, and Other Flavors by Sonali Dev
Paperback, 6 pages |
purchase close overlay Buy Featured Book Title Pride, Prejudice, and Other Flavors Author Sonali Dev Your purchase helps support NPR programming. How?
Amazon Independent Booksellers Bollywood meets Jane Austen — in San Francisco! — in Sonali Dev’s Pride, Prejudice and Other Flavors . Neurosurgeon Trisha Raje’s family is Indian American royalty: Not only is her father is an actual prince in India, but her mother is a former Bollywood star and her brother’s running for governor of California.
Trisha’s estranged from her family, but she’s trying to reconnect — and at one of her brother’s fundraisers, she runs into (almost literally) chef DJ Caine, who’s there to cater the event. It’s a fiery meeting, full of anger fueled by misplaced pride, so you can imagine Trisha’s shock when she realizes that DJ is also the protective older brother of one of her patients.
Born in London to Anglo-Indian and Rwandan parents, DJ turned to cooking to cope with the poverty and racism of his childhood. Trisha’s not-so-white privilege gets his defenses up, and their ongoing battle of wills forces them to examine their own positions in society and their biases against each other.
Their story is reminiscent of Austen’s classic novel — both pride and prejudice abound — but calling it a retelling of Pride and Prejudice would do it an injustice. Dev’s sharp voice cuts through the tension to take a sensitive look at class strife and parlay it into a bigger examination of race and privilege from a diverse perspective.
Book Reviews ‘Unmarriageable’ Sets ‘Pride And Prejudice’ In Pakistan Author Interviews What If ‘Pride And Prejudice’ Were Set In Cincinnati? By juxtaposing a first-generation wealthy Indian American against a struggling multiracial Brit, Dev widens our perception of privilege, and shows Trisha coming to terms with her own. It’s important to note the power dynamic between Trisha and DJ: He works for her family, and she holds his sister’s life in her hands. As readers, we can’t help but empathize with DJ’s circumstances — but Trisha’s drive to protect her family and career from a manipulative ex-friend, and the way she goes above and beyond to save DJ’s sister illuminates the true core of her character.
Though the buildup to Trisha and DJ’s happily-ever-after is paved with contentious encounters, the journey feels emotionally fulfilling — it almost seems like Dev’s main concern is tracking her characters’ personal growth, rather than the romance itself. And she uses their slow-burn bond to launch necessary conversations around race and class.
‘Pride’ feels more like a love story about family, redemption, and acceptance than a traditional romance — with food as a running motif.
In fact, Pride feels more like a love story about family, redemption, and acceptance than a traditional romance — with food as a running motif. Trisha’s improved relationship with her family allows her to open herself up to DJ, and Dev depicts this transformation through DJ’s skills in the kitchen. By fusing different cuisines and pairing complementary spices, DJ — and in turn Dev — shows us that people can come together just as well as DJ’s luscious Arabica bean gelato with dark caramel sauce.
Vivid and deliciously enticing, Dev’s storytelling is layered with emotional depth as she draws us into Trisha and DJ’s story and endears us to the rest of the Rajes — even Trisha’s seemingly awful father. Much like DJ’s dishes, Pride, Prejudice, and Other Flavors is a flavorful harmony of cross-cultural unions, familial love, and an entertaining ensemble of characters that will leave readers with a serious craving for more.
Kamrun Nesa is a freelance writer based in New York. Her work has been featured in Bustle, HelloGiggles, PopSugar, BookBub, RT Book Reviews , and Alloy .

Read More…

‘Pride, Prejudice, And Other Flavors’ Is More Than Just Reheated Austen

‘Pride, Prejudice, And Other Flavors’ Is More Than Just Reheated Austen By Kamrun Nesa • 35 minutes ago
Bollywood meets Jane Austen — in San Francisco! — in Sonali Dev’s Pride, Prejudice and Other Flavors . Neurosurgeon Trisha Raje’s family is Indian American royalty: Not only is her father is an actual prince in India, but her mother is a former Bollywood star and her brother’s running for governor of California.
Trisha’s estranged from her family, but she’s trying to reconnect — and at one of her brother’s fundraisers, she runs into (almost literally) chef DJ Caine, who’s there to cater the event. It’s a fiery meeting, full of anger fueled by misplaced pride, so you can imagine Trisha’s shock when she realizes that DJ is also the protective older brother of one of her patients.
Born in London to Anglo-Indian and Rwandan parents, DJ turned to cooking to cope with the poverty and racism of his childhood. Trisha’s not-so-white privilege gets his defenses up, and their ongoing battle of wills forces them to examine their own positions in society and their biases against each other.
Their story is reminiscent of Austen’s classic novel — both pride and prejudice abound –but calling it a retelling of Pride and Prejudice would do it an injustice. Dev’s sharp voice cuts through the tension to take a sensitive look at class strife and parlay it into a bigger examination of race and privilege from a diverse perspective.
By juxtaposing a first-generation wealthy Indian American against a struggling multiracial Brit, Dev widens our perception of privilege, and shows Trisha coming to terms with her own. It’s important to note the power dynamic between Trisha and DJ: He works for her family, and she holds his sister’s life in her hands. As readers, we can’t help but empathize with DJ’s circumstances — but Trisha’s drive to protect her family and career from a manipulative ex-friend, and the way she goes above and beyond to save DJ’s sister illuminates the true core of her character.
Though the buildup to Trisha and DJ’s happily-ever-after is paved with contentious encounters, the journey feels emotionally fulfilling — it almost seems like Dev’s main concern is tracking her characters’ personal growth, rather than the romance itself. And she uses their slow-burn bond to launch necessary conversations around race and class. ‘Pride’ feels more like a love story about family, redemption, and acceptance than a traditional romance — with food as a running motif. –
In fact, Pride feels more like a love story about family, redemption, and acceptance than a traditional romance — with food as a running motif. Trisha’s improved relationship with her family allows her to open herself up to DJ, and Dev depicts this transformation through DJ’s skills in the kitchen. By fusing different cuisines and pairing complementary spices, DJ — and in turn Dev — shows us that people can come together just as well as DJ’s luscious Arabica bean gelato with dark caramel sauce.
Vivid and deliciously enticing, Dev’s storytelling is layered with emotional depth as she draws us into Trisha and DJ’s story and endears us to the rest of the Rajes — even Trisha’s seemingly awful father. Much like DJ’s dishes, Pride, Prejudice, and Other Flavors is a flavorful harmony of cross-cultural unions, familial love, and an entertaining ensemble of characters that will leave readers with a serious craving for more.
Kamrun Nesa is a freelance writer based in New York. Her work has been featured in Bustle, HelloGiggles, PopSugar, BookBub, RT Book Reviews , and Alloy . Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. © 2019 WCMU Public Radio

Read More…

[RAMADAN] Hilton Singapore’s Pop Up Iftar Buffet – A Feast With a View!

06/05/2019 [RAMADAN] Hilton Singapore’s Pop Up Iftar Buffet – A Feast With a View!
Everyone loves buffets! During Ramadan, the pop-up Iftar Buffet at Hilton Singapore has been a favourite choice with many for obvious reasons. Great news! They’re back again this year for a 3rd edition and it’s better than ever!
Rejoice with family and friends at Hilton Singapore’s pop-up Iftar Buffet which is specially certified Halal by MUIS just for Ramadan. This experience comes literally once a year so don’t miss out!
Hilton Singapore’s pop-up Iftar Buffet boasts no less than 90 delicious delights to feast upon. This even includes 4 LIVE Stations! They’ve got everything including fresh Seafood & Oysters, a wide range of Salads, Carving Specials (like Whole Roasted Australian Beef Sirloin and Roasted Whole Lamb Ouzi), a plethora of Desserts and a whole host of other Buka Puasa Specials!
The delicious food is not the only thing to be enjoyed – soak in the spectacular sunset views as you dine from the rooftop level 24 of Hilton Singapore! We really mean it when we say you’ll be dining at the top 😛
The pop-up Iftar Buffet will feature a whole host of both International and Local cuisines including Indian, Moroccan, Chinese, Japanese and, of course, plenty of traditional seasonal favourites too.
Start off with the freshest selection of seafood like Canadian Oysters, Tiger Prawns and Mussels among others. Japanese favourites like Sushi and Sashimi are also available along with other Moroccan and Indian delights.
Special LIVE Stations promise to serve up tasty delicacies as well. Grab a serving (or two!) of Singapore Laksa along with some Singapore Rojak. I’m sure all my fellow meat-lovers will rejoice at the Whole Roasted Australian Beef Sirloin and Roasted Whole Lamb Ouzi! Given the 5-star treatment from the kitchen all the way to your plate 😀
And we haven’t even started on the other main dishes to be enjoyed. Must-have special dishes include the rich Bubur Lambuk (Rice Porridge with Meat), Ayam Goreng Berempah and the Beef Tail Soup. PRO TIP: Be sure to grab some extra stick of the delicious and VERY POPULAR Chicken & Mutton Satay!
Once you get to dessert, you’ll again be spoiled for choice. There are so many great choices but we recommend the legendary Hilton Cheesecake and also some Apam Balik as must-try desserts! Round off everything with the Ice Kacang & Cendol LIVE Station for that sweet ending to your feast 🙂
The Hilton Singapore Ramadhan Buffet is on from 9th May 2019 till 2nd June 2019 (6.30pm to 10.30pm) and is verified as Halal by Majlis Ugama Islam Singapura for the Ramadan period. Prices are listed below and you can either call +65 6737 2233 or email sinhi.f& [email protected] to make reservations. Be sure to book early to avoid disappointment!
Feast on the delicious food and also feast your eyes at the same time with the amazing views at the Hilton Singapore Pop Up Iftar Buffet! Selamat berbuka!
SPECIAL PROMO FOR THE HALAL FOOD BLOG READERS! Quote “THFBHILTONSPECIAL” when you reserve to enjoy a special offer! 1 dines FREE with every 3 full paying adults! Valid for Iftar during 1st week of Ramadan (9th-15th May). Limited to 2 free diners per table. Limited seats allocated for the offer per day.
PRICING DETAILS:
Weekday (Sundays – Thursdays): $72++ per person Weekend (Fridays – Saturdays): $80++ per person
Child: Weekday (Sundays– Thursdays): $36++ per child Weekend (Fridays – Saturdays): $40++ per child Children aged 5 to 12 years old / Children below the age of 5 dine for free
Group Bookings: Save 20% off with a minimum of six diners (maximum 15 diners). An advance reservation of minimum 2 days is required. Hilton Singapore Pop Up Iftar Buffet 9th May 2019 – 2nd June 2019 | 6:30pm to 10:30pm Hilton Singapore

Read More…

Le Creuset’s Latest ‘Freestyle collection’

Le Creuset’s Latest ‘Freestyle collection’
~
The new collection from Le Creuset: A fusion of shapes inspired by cuisines and flavours from all over the world – launching Spring 2019~
New Delhi
Food gives us the joy to explore cultures, to mix and match flavors, and to explore variations of our favorite cuisines. More than half of millennial restaurant goers look for globally inspired cuisine and a large portion of the population puts international cuisine as their top culinary choice. Whether it’s inheriting food traditions or learning new ones from other cultures, one thing’s for sure, food builds communities and we want to feel connected.
The French premium brand, Le Creuset, launches their new ‘Freestyle campaign’ with two extraordinary themes this Spring Season; Patchwork Cuisine, a mix and match fusion of food styles and flavours and Summer Road Trip, inspired by popular street food and outdoor entertainment. Le Creuset’s exciting new products encourage you to become more curious about different food and flavor pairings.
Le Creuset wants to inspire home cooks to find their freestyle and get creative with their culinary thinking, with its range of iconic Cast Iron products including the new Rectangular and Deep Square Grills for BBQ taste. These are perfect for creating your choice of delicious sweet or savory one-pot dishes. As part of the Freestyle campaign, Le Creuset has created a series of fusion recipes bringing together different inspirations and new flavour combinations. From Caribbean Fajitas to Malaysian ‘Sunday Lunch’ Pot Roast Chicken and Vietnamese Nachos – there is a unique flavour combo in every recipe. For the Indian palate, there are various dishes with a unique twist like the Chicken Tikka, Coconut Fish Curry with Purple Sprouting Brocolli and Dal Stuffed Sweet Potatoes.
So, time to throw out the rulebook and mix and match hues, which expresses your individualism. The Freestyle colour palette includes the colour classics, Volcanic Orange and Marseille Blue & Rosemary. The chosen shades are available across Cast Iron, Stoneware and Kitchen Accessories. The collection also showcases the diversity and unrivalled cooking performance of the 3-ply Stainless Steel and Toughened Non-Stick ranges.
About Le Creuset: Established in 1925, Le Creuset stands tall in the league of cookware brands worldwide. Its premium quality and world-class innovations have allowed to it to carve a niche for itself in the industry. Its exquisite range covers stoneware, textiles and kitchen essentials, all of which are made available by Le Creuset in vibrant colours. Among the highlights are the enamelled cast iron cookware, multi-ply stainless steel, toughened non-stick, and bakeware, along with its outstanding range of wine accessories. With leading chefs as loyal customers, the brand has proved the serviceability of its durable and versatile range of products, over and over again.
For further information about Le Creuset Cookware, care and use instructions, recipe ideas visit https://www.le-creuset.in/

Read More…

SFG Club Introduces VR Foosball to London’s Roof East

House of Foos Roof East SFG Club VR Foosball
It’s almost summertime and the weather is starting to warm up here in the UK, so what better time to enjoy a few drinks with mates on a rooftop bar. London’s Roof East has opened for another year and thanks to SFG Club , there’s going to be plenty of food and entertainment available; including a brand new virtual reality (VR) foosball experience.
Londoners will be able to head down to Roof East to see the new House of Foos, a covered part of the rooftop complex which features a four-player VR foosball experience. The controls will be familiar but the content will take foosball gameplay to a new immersive level. It’s strictly 4-player, so visitors will need some friends or coerce some willing strangers to play. Each session is 10 minutes for two games and costs £5 GBP per person.
After working up a hunger and thurst visitors can then enjoy the new Roof Eats concept, food stalls serving street food from around the world. Stalls include Eat Chay, indulgent vegan food with flavour inspirations from traditional Vietnamese and Korean cuisines; Kolkati, serving North Indian inspired ‘Kati Rolls’– a flaky egg-fried paratha wraps, filled with masala chicken or paneer and The Burger Project, a burger bar run by Jimmy Garcia. Of course, Roof East will also feature 3 bars, with a selection of new cocktails such as the rum and raspberry ‘Knickerbocker Royale’ to blue tequila ‘Electric Boogaloo’.
There’s also plenty more to do, 6 gaming lanes offer curling, bowling or shuffle and five free games offer visitors Cornhole, Jenga, Table Tennis, Foosball (normal) and Table-top Curling. Baseball fans can jump into the Sluggers batting cages or for a less energetic sport there’s country garden themed Birdies crazy golf. Or for those that really need to de-stress Flow East Yoga will be on hand to offer Vinyasa Flow Yoga classes, suitable for all levels.
Roof East is open Tuesday – Sunday, weekdays 5pm – 11pm and weekends 12pm – 11pm. There isn’t an entrance fee so it’s free to enjoy the view. Adult tickets for games start from £8 and can be booked on the website . May also sees the return of the Rooftop Film Club featuring a programme of new releases, cult classics and other cinematic spectacles. For any further updates, keep reading VRFocus . Share Peter Graham
Senior Staff Writer at VRFocus who enjoys bringing the latest news to our keen readers all over the world. Obsessive gamer since the days of the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, when Peter does step outside he’s off to practice Bruce Lee’s Jeet Kune Do, or see the latest local live bands.
E-mail: pgraham@vrfocus.com

Read More…

Richard Radcliff Trice – Sweet Home Alabama, Where the Skies Are So Blue

I had a buddy at college who came from Birmingham, Alabama who would churn out the sweet sounds of Lynyrd Skynyrd almost every afternoon, paying homage to his home town. I didn’t know it then, but just 15 years later I would be moving to the home state of my buddy Richard Radcliff Trice and calling it my new home. Much is said about Alabama and I had heard many ideas and stereotypes about the place before arriving here, most of which are completely wrong, here is what it is really like to live here.
Weather
The weather isn’t for everyone and there are really just 3 seasons here which are incredibly hot, hot with humidity, and freezing cold, there really isn’t much in-between. Personally I am more than happy with the weather conditions here and coming from Texas there are a lot of similarities.
The People
People down in the south of the US have a reputation for being kind and welcoming but this has not always been my experience per se. My opinion of the people here in Alabama is that there are some who will make you feel like million bucks and there are others looking to trample on whoever they have to to get where they’re going, just like all over the world.
Food
If you love BBQ then this is the perfect state for you and you won’t have to travel far before getting a whiff of some BBQ smoker out the back of a restaurant or in someone’s garden. In Birmingham there is some great Mexican and Japanese cuisine but the state doesn’t offer too much by way of Italian, Greek, French or Indian food.
Sports
Everyone in the state adores sports and they get right behind their local teams here across the state. Football is very much the biggest sport in the state, with baseball trailing closely behind, soccer is generally considered as being for kids and basketball occasionally gets a look in, although it really is football and baseball which take the crown as most popular sports.
Living
The cost of living in this state is very low in comparison to others across the nation and that includes metropolitan areas. Even in Birmingham it can be very easy to find a property in the $175,000 range.
What to Do
Alabama has perfect proximity to the mountains and the beach which means that there is plenty of nature to go and discover. Throughout the state you’ll find hiking and biking trails, jogging routes, ski resorts and lots of fishing sites. Alabama gets a huge amount of great live music too, often spilling over from nearby Nashville and the zoo here is one of the best which the southern states have to offer.
Alabama definitely lived up to the hype which I had heard before moving here and I would certainly recommend it is a place to live or simply to visit for a week or two.

Read More…