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Old 24th May 2013, 12:03   #5641
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http://www.labonel.net/

Finally picked up some cupcakes from the new Gachibowli outlet.
Rs 650 for a box of 15 cupcakes.
There were an equal number of vanilla, chocolate and red velvet cupcakes.

These are small cupcakes with a nice topping of vanilla cream. They are expensive no doubt about that. But they are delicious.

Only cupcakes, brownies and cakes are available.
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Old 24th May 2013, 12:43   #5642
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By the way instant dislike of any food (especially bland and tasteless; like Arabian or Mediterranean non-veg delicacies or Jain veg delicacies) is a bad strategy. What these types of food offer is these preserve the inherent taste of the food items cooked without masking them with heavy masala which you might like instantly.
Perhaps, I put my thoughts ratherly bluntly. I must confess, i dont dislike any food in general. I love food

When it comes to choices, everyone has one. My choice is clear in what I like.

Below is sequential list of my favorite cuisines :-

1. North Indian Food
2. South Indian Food
3. Chinese Food
4. Thai Food

Everything else other than above, I would love to in general taste but, would not be craving after. Mediterranean food is one such cuisine which if given choice will eat and maybe even relish it. But, i will NEVER look forward to eating a plate of hummus, pita bread or ghoulash etc.

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If you try it second and third time you might appreciate what I am saying.
Have tried it more than three times and not just in India

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By the way we Indians also hold a firm belief that only people on earth who know how to cook delicious food are us without even tasting any other type of food (This applies especially to places where they use heavy masala like A.P and Kerala).
I love Indian cusine the best because we have been brought up on this food so its obvious this my most favorite food. And, it's indeed a fact that Indian cooking is one of the best ( except that its too heavy) and has the most variety in entire world

In indian cusines, I particularly dont like Gujarati, Kerala and Bengali food as my taste buds never liked their overall taste despite trying it many times. So I stay away from these local cuisines. One of my favorite cuisine is Maharastrian food which is exceptionally light and has amazing flavoured curries and chutneys which can boggle your mind with their simple taste, lightness and flavour

There are a few countries who come close to enormity of the cuisine like Middle East, Asian Countries and Italy. Most of the western countries just mix-match bread, meat and veggies into various concoctions to make it a meal ( I consider majority of their meals as just fast-food and not real cooking)
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Old 24th May 2013, 14:01   #5643
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What these types of food offer is these preserve the inherent taste of the food items cooked without masking them with heavy masala which you might like instantly.


By the way we Indians also hold a firm belief that only people on earth who know how to cook delicious food are us without even tasting any other type of food (This applies especially to places where they use heavy masala like A.P and Kerala).
Many Indians don't like the inherent taste of meat because meat is not their staple food hence they never tried to cook and eat it in simple manner. Traditionally(atleast in majority of Hindu house holds) it is cooked occasionally and is not a part of daily diet. Hence it is cooked in a way that befits occasional cooking. I wouldn't say spices mask the taste but in my opinion it enhances the taste.
There is nothing good or bad about it. Its the way it is. People in some part of world like the meat cooked(or semi cooked) without the spices, we don't. Also this must have something to do with the geography of the region. In the Arab region they never had enough vegetables or spices, hence their cuisine evolved that way. We have the spices so we use it. Those who couldn't cope up with the inherent taste of the meat in that region must have been long extinct.
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Old 24th May 2013, 15:32   #5644
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Perhaps, I put my thoughts ratherly bluntly. I must confess, i dont dislike any food in general. I love food...
Heh heh yes, to the point of notoreity

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... But, i will NEVER look forward to eating a plate of hummus, pita bread or ghoulash etc.
Pita with hummus, babaghanoush etc. don't constitute a meal, they are appetizers. We don't see the actual Arabian / Mediterranean entrees etc. in India. Most Arabian joints pass off the appetizers as the main stuff, and the others are just fast food joints serving falafel and kababs. Try the real main courses (like the tarzine stuff) and you will change your mind.

And goulash (gyulyas in Hungary) is something I can bet you will relish, if you try the original. It is a meal-by-itself thick soup, hot, spicy, delicious if made right.

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... I love Indian cusine ... Indian cooking is one of the best ... has the most variety in entire world ... I particularly dont like Gujarati, Kerala and Bengali food as my taste buds never liked their overall taste despite trying it many times. ...
Sorry, not picking your fault here but ...

1. That is how the brain is wired all over the world. Germans, Japanese and Americans in general hate to try anything that is spicy, yet there are people there whose Scoville rating tolerance can put AP guys to shame (think Bhoot Jholokia chillies)

2. All that is required to appreciate (eating often is a different matter) is an open mind. The geumophobic majority have actually a closed mind

3. Most Indians have a capsaicin-dependancy. Even with an open mind, I get craving for chillies anywhere I go. Sometimes Tabasco sauce helps, sometimes it doesn't. And, I realize when I have been hit by that psychosomatic dependency I am not able to appreciate the local cuisine

4. Indian food habits are woven around carbohydrates (good for an agrarian society) - rice, roti, ragi mudde, whatever. Everything else is to make the carbs interesting, and that is where the hot stuff wins. All other cuisines (barring Mexican, I think) it is the other way around - carbs are a small part of the meal, proteins and fats form the bulk (good for hunters-gatherers in cold climate)

5. In Indian cuisine, we are usually brought up to appreciate complexity. Like modern art - a melange of colors thrown at the canvas, with some form given by some lines and circles. Colors blend into each other but with blurred boundaries, the same way as a dozen masalas do. Japanese cuisine, for example, relies on simplicity. That is more like appreciating a good water color painting - where a single color appears in a hundred contiguous shades (this was told to me by a Hungarian friend who has lived in Japan for 40 years now). Simple compositions and a handful of colors, yet an enormous palette of possibilities. Again, just needs an open mind to accept that cuisine philosophy

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... There are a few countries who come close to enormity of the cuisine like Middle East, Asian Countries and Italy. ...
You forgot to mention Mexico, Spain, France, Japan, China, ...

The 'enormity' of Indian cuisine is actually in vegetarian dishes, not non-veg (where there is only regional variation). Think of the combinations of vegetables, spices and type of cooking - it is truly mind-boggling.

Last edited by DerAlte : 24th May 2013 at 15:54.
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Old 24th May 2013, 15:53   #5645
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DA Saab, I totally concur with your views which are always pretty detailed and well thought out.

I have actually tried out goulash and didnt quite like it. That was the reason for mentioning that dish. There is a huge hue and cry about Bratwurst, I tried that too but, it didnt tickle my bone.

Similarly, I have tried Mongolian, Vietnemese, Mexican/Spanish, French etc. I must say its not bad at all. But, being ingrained from childhood into Indian cuisine its tough to ardently love or crave for aforementioned international cuisines. I love mexican food especially the burritos and enchiladas. Have no use for nachos and sour cream sauce etc. Maybe because it's carb based and close to Indian taste.

I follow the Man vs. Food Show and many other shows and I know some of the westerners use huge amounts of chilli too so its not like only Indians are used to the chilli factor.

A couple of reasons that maybe i dont relish other cuisines as Hunterz rightly mentioned is

1. We are used to having masalas enhance/mask the actual raw taste of meat which the western/arab/asian countries love.

2. Iam not a hard core meat eater and infact quoted by many that Iam a vegeterian non-veg eater probably makes it difficult to enjoy the world cuisines

To summarize, Iam particular and to an extent finicky about my choice of food and enjoy and relish only what I like (now that makes me a closed minded person, doesn't it?)

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Old 24th May 2013, 15:57   #5646
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Yes, because its Emu. I have a bit of less tolerance to supposedly exotic meats

Yesterday, myself and Gadgetfreak went for lunch to "Hadippa"
Mobike,

You missed egg curry which according to me was star item. I also tasted their Gulam jamun as I cannot resist hot gulab jamun, It was soft and nice.

Last edited by mobike008 : 24th May 2013 at 16:49. Reason: Pls dont quote entire post
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Old 24th May 2013, 17:40   #5647
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... I have actually tried out goulash and didnt quite like it. ...
Pity. Next time you go out of India, try it if you find a Hungarian or East European restaurant (there are many)

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... Bratwurst ... Acquired taste, only if you like German sausages. It is a snack, not representative of cuisine!

Similarly, I have tried Mongolian You will run away from the real one!, Vietnemese, Mexican/Spanish Not the same! , French etc. ... I love mexican food especially the burritos and enchiladas. ... You are basing your likes and dislikes on snack food? That is like saying all Thai food is fried grasshoppers!

... westerners use huge amounts of chilli ... No, they really don't. Buffalo wings is the only one with possibility of heat. Chilli (mildly hot paprika) is not the same as Chilly or Chillies the way we eat!

...1. We are used to having masalas enhance/mask the actual raw taste of meat which the western/arab/asian countries love. It started with masking the 'aroma' of putrefaction (understandable in temperate / hot climate, but that logic is not true any more). The actual taste / smell of fresh meat / fish is not revolting. But then today most people will be happy eating the gravy with the rice/roti even if the pieces are removed

2. Iam not a hard core meat eater ... probably makes it difficult to enjoy the world cuisines Bad excuse
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... finicky about my choice of food and enjoy and relish only what I like (now that makes me a closed minded person, doesn't it?)
A majority of the people are like that, baba, so nothing wrong with it. The 'want to do it but can't do it' is the problem!
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Old 24th May 2013, 19:19   #5648
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Only reason to go there is for their excellent ambience and great view of Hyderabad through the glass windows
Hi Avi,

hmm...that is bad of PH! Falling down on the quality of food

The view is awesome, especially during dusk time with a glass of lime cordial and some nice kababs etc.

Have fun, looking forward to meeting you all this december.
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Old 25th May 2013, 06:59   #5649
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Four Seasons is a mixed platter restuarant.

Iam not a fan of arabic food for that particular reason. Bland and tasteless
Except when you are eating "Irani Tandoori Chicken" from Sarvi or "Murgh Malai Kabab" from Deccan Takeaway.
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Originally Posted by mroptimist View Post
By the way instant dislike of any food (especially bland and tasteless; like Arabian or Mediterranean non-veg delicacies or Jain veg delicacies) is a bad strategy.

By the way we Indians also hold a firm belief that only people on earth who know how to cook delicious food are us without even tasting any other type of food (This applies especially to places where they use heavy masala like A.P and Kerala).
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1. That is how the brain is wired all over the world. Germans, Japanese and Americans in general hate to try anything that is spicy, yet there are people there whose Scoville rating tolerance can put AP guys to shame (think Bhoot Jholokia chillies)

3. Most Indians have a capsaicin-dependancy. And, I realize when I have been hit by that psychosomatic dependency I am not able to appreciate the local cuisine
Err, Bhoot Jolokia is native to Assam and North-East, not AP.
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1. We are used to having masalas enhance/mask the actual raw taste of meat which the western/arab/asian countries love.
Chillies are "NOT" native to India.

Chillies were introduced to Indians in 1498, just 515 Years, Zero Months & 5 Days back.

Read this blog by Ms. Deepa Krishnan on chillies : http://delhimagic.blogspot.in/2007/08/chilli-story.htm
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Old 25th May 2013, 17:34   #5650
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Well Nanking on Park Lane, it used to be for Chinese!
But then they fell down, quite literally..., was happy to find a Nanking outlet in Banjara Hills area, but after 2 / 3 visits to it, realized that guess its lost the touch.
After some online search, tried Kim Fung on Tarnaka, well the food was good, better than Nanking of Banjara, though definitely none for me come close to the original Park Lane one.
But it (Kim Fung) definitely should termed as a takeaway with place to sit while you wait.
the seating space is very basic, rather garageish, with just about 4 odd tables, a singular AC, which also does not work when there is no power!

Well, moment one mentions food scene of hyd, everybody goes gaga over the hyderabadi biryani, but well having been brought up on mughlai biryanis of Awadh, i did not really find the hyderabadi biryani, to be celebrated like so.
Its good no doubt, but I must say here, I really do not like the one dished out in Paradise, though again I find people swearing by it! Okay the quantity is good but thats just about it. Its more like a chicken pulao with half a boiled egg in between!
The one from hotel Alfa (opposite Secunderabad Railway Stn) is better than the Paradise one.
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Old 25th May 2013, 18:07   #5651
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Chillies are "NOT" native to India.

Chillies were introduced to Indians in 1498, just 515 Years, Zero Months & 5 Days back.

Read this blog by Ms. Deepa Krishnan on chillies : http://delhimagic.blogspot.in/2007/08/chilli-story.htm
An interesting discussion you are having here. If you go into the history of many of the common staple food in India, you will find that they were brought in by invaders or traders few hundred years ago.

Some of you might know that potato was indigenous of South America, and Spaniards brought it to Europe in 16th century. It reached India only early seventeenth century when Portuguese started cultivating in small strips in the western coast. The Mumbaikars still call potato Batata from the Portuguese name. Britishers were really responsible for spreading it across the country during the 19th century and varieties suitable for Indian conditions were developed only by 1935 just around 80 years ago.


Ok coming back to the main topic of the thread..

Visited Shanghai Chef, Gachibowli with my wife yesterday for dinner.

This was our bill.

Drunken Prawn Soup Rs. 120.00
Dragon Chicken Rs. 195.00
Mineral Water Rs. 35.00
Udang Sambal Rs. 250.00
Spicy Crab Meat Rice Rs. 225.00

Total including 5% VAT and 5% SRC Rs 908.00

We liked everything but nothing was extraordinary, Dragon Chicken is a starter has a sweet sour taste.

A Guide: Eating out in Hyderabad/Secunderabad/Cyberabad-img_20130524_213010.jpg
Udang Sambal is a Malaysian dish has a strong flavour of Coconut milk and butter. It is quite unlike the typical tastes of Andhra so if you are conservative on your food, do not order this.

A Guide: Eating out in Hyderabad/Secunderabad/Cyberabad-img_20130524_212958.jpg
Spicy Crab Meat Rice was spicy. The overuse of chilli powder suppressed the natural taste of crab meat.

Service was very good, the waiter took pains to explain each and every dish and made sure we really want them . It was very far less crowded for a Friday evening.
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Old 26th May 2013, 09:17   #5652
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Except when you are eating "Irani Tandoori Chicken" from Sarvi or "Murgh Malai Kabab" from Deccan Takeaway.

Err, Bhoot Jolokia is native to Assam and North-East, not AP.
Bajaj Saab, Iam huge fan of Irani Tandoori Chicken, Murg Malai Kebab and Reshmi Chicken ( Bland taste) as these seems to be an exception to my taste buds. Enjoy each and every of these dishes

Btw, What DA saab meant was AP guys can be put to shame if "Bhoot Jhalokia" is compared with it. I think he is aware its a north-eastern chilli

Even our hero (Rocky) from HOMP couldnt eat a single small Bhoot Jhalokia in one of the episode

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Visited Shanghai Chef, Gachibowli with my wife yesterday for dinner. We liked everything but nothing was extraordinary, Dragon Chicken is a starter has a sweet sour taste.
You have put it accurately. Shanghai Chef is neither bad nor good. But, I would rate them tilting towards good and never been disapointed with their food.

Wanton is slightly better but, not extraordinary either.

Yesterday, Me,Bajaj Saab and A4anurag went to KDM for lunch.

It was so crowded, I thought we will be seated for dinner...LOL

But, Bajaj Saab has some contacts there and we were promptly seated and enjoyed an amazing Thali with Mutton Fry and Omlette. God Bless the owner for introducing such simple yet sinful food

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Old 26th May 2013, 16:53   #5653
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A few elderly relatives from Assam are visiting today and they only appreciate familiar grub - Bong or Assamese.

Took them out for lunch to my favourite Bengali restaurant "10 Dalhousie" in Madhapur and ordered the following:

Special Kosha Mangsho (mutton curry)
Bangladeshi chicken curry (spicy n lip smacking)
Moong daal with fish head (we almost wiped the serving dish clean)
Rui jhol (rohu fish curry)
Shukto - avial like mixed vegetable curry with a bitter touch brought by methi (yummy as expected)
Kolkatta style mutton biryani (more on this ahead)
Mishti doi (sweet curd)

Total damage 1850 for seven pax.
As expected the food at this restaurant is very good. It has never disappointed me till date, the best touch being the reasonable prices.

About the Bong Biryani:

No, its not as bad as people here say it is (usually without ever having tasted it).
BUT....a person who is used to the spicy biryani in Hyderabad will not enjoy it as much.
It is lightly flavoured with a rose-kewra touch like a Lucknowi pulav. And the infamous huge chunks of potato in it (which we hyderabadies may call a blasphemy) actually add a nice touch to it.

If you are in a group you may order a single serving and share it to experience what its all about.

Last edited by CtrlAltDel : 26th May 2013 at 17:07.
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Old 26th May 2013, 20:43   #5654
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... Shukto - avial like mixed vegetable curry with a bitter touch brought by methi ...
Durr! It has bitter gourd in it. The methi in the paanch-phodon doesn't impart any bitterness!

The usual ingredients are raw banana, bitter gourd, broad beans, potato (or sweet potato), radish, brinjal, red pumpkin and drumsticks. The gravy is with a paste of poppy seeds (khus khus) and ginger. A spot of milk while cooking, and a dash of ghee at the end and ... yumm, I can finish a meal with only this and rice.

This is perhaps the only dish where they don't put turmeric, for some reason - the gravy should be ideally white. The difference from avial is the absence of coconut (grated / milk) and different spices.
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Old 26th May 2013, 21:16   #5655
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Durr! It has bitter gourd in it. The methi in the paanch-phodon doesn't impart any bitterness!

The usual ingredients are raw banana, bitter gourd, broad beans, potato (or sweet potato), radish, brinjal, red pumpkin and drumsticks. The gravy is with a paste of poppy seeds (khus khus) and ginger. A spot of milk while cooking, and a dash of ghee at the end and ... yumm, I can finish a meal with only this and rice.

This is perhaps the only dish where they don't put turmeric, for some reason - the gravy should be ideally white. The difference from avial is the absence of coconut (grated / milk) and different spices.
Isn't the shukto constituency variable? I.e., you can put different vegetables. My aunt used to cook jhinge shukto, with only potato and jhinge, whatever it is called in English.
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