Dine like the royals

Alisha Shinde
Tuesday, 12 March 2019

The ongoing food festival Royals of Rajasthan at Marriott Suites Pune takes you to this colourful state and offers you a delectable culinary experience

Rajasthan is one colourful state and when we say colour, we also include its cuisine. Renowned for its magnificent palaces and rich culture and heritage, Rajasthani food too reflects the legacy of erstwhile royalty. And who wouldn’t like a slice of royalty? Royals of Rajasthan, the ongoing food festival at Marriott Suites Pune, brings to you all the delectable dishes so that you can take a royal culinary tour of the place.  

Think Rajasthan and one simply cannot miss out on their chutneys. The hotel’s in-house Rajasthani chef, Bhuralal Prajapati, who has curated the menu, says that Rajasthanis, in particular, like indulging in a variety of chutneys which are freshly made with ingredients to go as a perfect accompaniment or even as a legit dish eaten with roti. “As a community, we are obsessed with the colour ‘red’ because of the native chilli that is available in the region. It not only gives the food a perfect red colour but also boosts the flavour of the dish and leaves you asking for more,” he says.  

While most of us can’t think beyond Dal Baati Churma and Lal Maas when we talk about Rajasthani cuisine, let us tell you that Rajasthanis take their ‘chaat’ very seriously. The crispy Papdi Chaat that we had at the festival came with onions, imli chutney, spiced mashed potato, black chickpeas and a liberal topping of sev, and it was a drool-worthy dish. Kachori Chaat, which had a bit of curd to tone down the spiciness from the garlic and chilli chutney, was equally tempting. 

The starters too were delectable and we relished them with an array of chutneys that Prajapati has specially curated — Raw Tomato Chutney, Tomato Chutney, Mint and Chilli Chutney, Yellow Pepper Chutney and Garlic Chutney, to name a few. Each of them goes well with any dish because the flavours are not overwhelming.  

After having Dal Baati Churma at many places in the past, we can say that the one served here will stay in your mind. The Dal Baati Churma had the perfect balance of flavours and the lingering taste of desi ghee made it insanely good. So don’t miss out on this! 

Moving on to the main course, what caught our eye other than the Lal Maas was Bhuna Kukkad and Dal Panchmel. The chicken dish — Bhuna Kukkad, which looked an iconic red, was coated with red spices that gave the meat a ‘smoking hot’ flavour. The curry tasted good with the Jodhpuri Pulav which was packed with dry fruits, and fruits like grapes and pomegranate that eased out the spiciness of the dish. 

Dal Panchmel, which is a combination of five types of lentils cooked in Rajasthani style, is a wholesome dish. To enjoy the goodness of chana, masoor, moong, urad and toor dals, you must try this. Turmeric and other Rajasthani spices made Dal Panchmel a lip-smacking dish, but what added the punch was the red chilli tadka.

Any Rajasthani meal is incomplete without Gatte Ki Subzi. So we couldn’t give it a miss. The one served at the festival had cooked and spiced gram flour dumplings dunked in the spicy curd gravy. Rajasthanis like their dishes hot and spicy and Royals of Rajasthan makes sure you too enjoy their spices.   

After all that spice, you need some sweetness. How about some hot Jalebis right off the kadhai? The crispy Jalebis that we had weren’t too sweet and had a hint of ghee. The best part was the Rabadi topping on the Jalebi. The dry fruits in the rabadi certainly made it a food of the royals. 

The Malpuas, which were slightly crispy and slightly sweet, were ambrosial.  

However, we couldn’t complete our Rajastthani culinary journey without trying the iconic sweet — Ghevar. Though our tummies were full, we  are glad that we did not miss having this dish. The netty dessert was soft, fresh and soaked in sugar syrup and topped with dry fruits and saffron — a dish fit for the royals. 

ST READER SERVICE
Royals of Rajasthan is under way at Sen5es, Marriott Suites Pune, Koregaon Park, till March 16 from 7-11 pm

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