Review: Burma Burma – Thingyan Menu

Review: Burma Burma – Thingyan Menu

Burma Burma has launched a special menu from 5 to 17 June to celebrate Thingyan (Burmese New Year), and this menu follows through on the promise that Burma Burma has kept since it first opened its doors- to provide you with delicious, authentic vegetarian Burmese food that will not let even hardcore non-vegetarians miss meat.

As soon as we were seated, we were served some Bottle Gourd Crisps (that were sprinkled with some paprika) to munch on, and I guess it’s only Burma Burma that can make an ingredient like bottle gourd taste so good, that it becomes impossible to stop oneself from going back for more.bb1For drinks, we went with the Spiced Ginger which looked as good as it tasted, and was made with fresh ginger juliennes, green chilies, lime, mint, and soda, and the glass had a salt rim. The Eldragon was a light and refreshing drink made up of coconut water, dragon fruit, and elderflower syrup.

We started our meal with two fantastic soups- Phat Saw Hincho and Shwepayon Hincho. The Phat Saw Hincho was a Kachin style dried mustard soup with edamame beans, and had a deep, earthy flavor. The Shwepayon Hincho, a pumpkin and basil soup is a must-try dish. It had a light, fragrant broth and soft pieces of pumpkin it in, and was just slightly sweet and seasoned nicely. The touch of fried onions on the top really enhanced the flavor of the soup.bb2Next, we had a couple of salads- the Kyar Zen Thoke, which had thin glass noodles with tofu tossed in sweet and spicy dressing, and was really refreshing, and the Tohu Thoke, that had yellow shan tohu and raw papaya with sweet and tangy black jaggery and soy dressing. The dressing was super flavorsome, but we wish the flavors had penetrated the tohu a bit more, but the other elements on the dish- the sprouts, carrots, onions, cucumber, and peanuts all came together to make a well-balanced dish.

The Grilled Mock Meat Skewers were a nice dish as well- the mock meat, which was made with wheat and soya, was nicely marinated with garlic, red chili, lemongrass and crushed pepper, and had a nice texture to it. The sauce served on the side had garlic and soy and went well with the dish.bb3We loved the Avocado with Papadam, a specialty of Bagan that had crispy rice papads topped with a creamy avocado mayo, chili oil, paprika, garlic, and spring onions. This is another addictive dish that you can continue to munch on throughout the meal.

The Pyanboo Laphet Kyaw, which had crispy corn tossed in tea leaf powder that they get specially from Burma, should also be tried. The dish has a unique flavor from the tea leaf powder and a touch of spice from fresh red chilies, and makes for a pretty good appetizer.bb4For mains, we went with the Mock Duck and Baby Potato Curry that he had with the Shan Thamin Kyaw, or fried rice with fermented soybean powder. The curry had juicy pieces of mock meat in a robust gravy made with hand-ground curry paste and coconut milk. We also had the Nan Pyar Khowsuey, which had flat wheat noodles served along with tofu, sesame seeds, and pickled vegetables, and topped with a thick gravy made with roasted gram flour, garlic oil, paprika, and crisp onions. The khowsuey came with the regular accompaniments such as spring onions, lemon wedges, fried onions, fried garlic, peanuts and paprika that you could add as per taste.

We ended the meal with a delicious Matcha Ice Cream and a Mango Sanwin Makin, which had a moist semolina cake, topped with fresh mango slices, and coconut and mango mousse,that tasted simply heavenly.bb5Overall, the food was quite good, and the service was excellent as always. If you’re a Burma Burma regular, and want to try some new dishes, then do check out this special menu.

Location: DLF Cyber Hub, Gurgaon and Select Citywalk Mall, Saket, New Delhi
Phone No.: 0124 4372997/98/99 or 011 49145807/08

 

Review: NicoCaara

Review: NicoCaara

The Caara brand has always stood for “conscious food”- sourcing chemical-free ingredients locally from their own farms or supporting local artisanal suppliers. With their new outlet at Chanakya Mall, they have tied up with the brand Nicobar, and have taken inspiration from the Nicobar Islands to curate a small plates menu that is tropical, light, and seasonal. They also have a lot of gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan options available on their menu.

We started off our meal with the FarmLove Garden Greens, Pears and Mint Salad that had their farm-grown mix of greens, fennel, pomegranate seeds, and fresh, crunchy pears, topped with creamy goats cheese, and tossed in a lovely honey and rice vinegar vinaigrette, and was beautifully decorated with edible flowers that added a pop of color.

The Chili Avocado Toast, one of their signature dishes, was just as good (if not better) as when we tasted it at Caara Café at Ogaan. Nicely toasted whole wheat bread was served with smashed avocado that was flavored with chili, tomato, coriander, lime and sesame seeds, and drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, perfectly balancing the creamy avocado with the acid from the lime.nc4The Coriander, Corn and Kale Pancake was a great dish, and a nice introduction to kale for whoever has not tried it before. The pancakes were light and fluffy, had a nice kale flavor and were studded with juicy corn. The tamarind, tomato, and mango chutney and the FarmLove micro herb salad served atop the pancakes really uplifted the flavors of the dish.

The Chicken and Shitake Orange Glaze Meatballs was a splendid dish made with juicy chicken meatballs that were flavored delicately but beautifully, and were coated with a lovely orange glaze and sprinkled with sesame seeds. The orange, carrot, and millet salad served alongside really complemented the chicken well. This is a must-have dish here!

The Seared Atlantic Salmon had perfectly cooked, flaky and meaty Salmon served in a clear rasam broth that had deep, rich flavors. The buckwheat and potato mash served with the dish was also seasoned with South Indian spices that complemented the broth well. The only issue with this dish was that the Salmon had on its own without the broth was a tad bland as the flavors had not penetrated inside.nc5We even tried a few of their drinks- the Iced Café Latte had a strong flavor and was just adequately sweetened, the Nicobar Elixia, a mix of pineapple, mango, orange, banana, coconut water, and chia seeds was a very refreshing drink, the Caara Green Mango Spritz, which is their take on the aam panna, was tangy and spicy, and had a lovely flavor of rock salt, and the Banana Smoothie, which had banana, honey, and roasted peanuts, topped with CAARA granola mix was a heavenly drink.nc3We ended this meal with two great desserts. The Chocolate and Coffee Pots are a must have for all the chocolate and coffee lovers, as both flavors were strong, but balanced. The dish consisted of a thick and creamy dark chocolate flavored with Mysore CAARA coffee. From the texture to the taste, everything on the dish was perfect. The Date and Raw Coconut Sticky Toffee Pudding had a lovely warm, soft and spongy pudding with a toffee caramel center, topped with cherries, chocolate shavings, and coconut shards.nc6Though the place is a bit on the pricey side, if you’re all for “conscious eating” while relishing some delicious and beautifully plated dishes, do check this place out.

Overall Rating: 4.25/5

Location: 215, 2nd Floor, Chanakya Mall, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi
Phone No.: +91 9773987430

Review: Pra Pra Prank

Review: Pra Pra Prank

Pra Pra Prank, the new brand by brothers Inderjeet and Jasmeet Banga, who rocked the restaurant scene a little while back with Prankster, has been the talk of the town since the day it launched. The concept of duality extends beyond its name- the restaurant brings together an interplay of two cuisines- modern Indian and modern Asian, it has at its helm two accomplished chefs Harangad Singh and Kaustubh Haldipur who have created magic with their unique menu, and the restaurant space which has a feel of a café, with a bar hidden behind the glass door decorated beautifully with miniature alcohol bottles.pra1They also have on board an exceptionally talented mixologist Shefali Singh, who dazzled us with some unique concoctions that she conjured up, each tastier and more interesting than the one before. We started with the Early Morning Gin Sour, that had Earl Grey infused gin, orange marmalade, lavender, and egg white- ingredients that represent breakfast, hence the name “early morning”, and each flavor was pronounced without overpowering the rest. Fragrance No.9, influenced by the famous perfume Chanel No. 9, had a heady mix of gin, elder flower, rose and egg white, and had a lovely floral scent. The Red Hot Chili Pepper had a spicy, delicious infusion of sesame seeds and red bell peppers with vodka, and had a nice kick to it. All the cocktails were presented beautifully and explained to us by Shefali. We also had a couple of mocktails- Fresh Beetroot Mary, an interesting take on bloody mary, but this one was made with fresh beetroot juice, and an Orange and Basil Spritzer, which had a touch of cucumber juice in to make it even more refreshing.pra2On the food front, Chef Kaustubh presented us first with a Salads of Fruits and Greens in Thai Dressing, which is just perfect for summers as it is supremely refreshing. Made with a mix of romaine lettuce, iceberg, baby spinach, and betel leaf, tossed with crunchy and juicy fruits like Asian pears, green apple, and dragon fruit, the salad was dressed in a flavorful Thai dressing that had a mix of garlic, dry red chili, galangal, and kaffir lime, and was topped with fried onions and peanuts for crunch. The different flavors and textures came together beautifully in the salad.

Next, we moved to two soups- the Yuzu and Coriander Root Soup with Vegetables had a lovely flavor from the fresh coriander roots, and the acidity from the yuzu juice was well-balanced. The Nepalese Chicken Broth, one of their signature items, had a sesame flavored chicken broth served with dumplings and noodles. The broth got its deep flavor from slow-cooking chicken bones and the noodles were thin and perfectly cooked.pra3The Veg Rainbow Roll was perhaps the best veg sushi we’ve had- made with beetroot-flavored sticky rice, filled with crunchy vegetables, and coated with smoked bell peppers, with a topping of pepper sauce and onion tomato salsa to impart it flavor without having to use any additional wasabi or soy sauce on the side.

They even do a swell job with their dim sum. We tried the Mushroom and Cheese Dim Sum, which had finely diced shitake, shimeji, and trumpet mushrooms with purple cabbage, folded with cheddar cheese, filled in a thin skin colored with beetroot juice. The dim sum itself was flavorful, but the truffle cream served alongside really took it up another notch. The Chicken Coriander Leaf Dumpling was no less, having a filling of coriander flavored finely diced chicken wrapped in a coriander flavored skin. This one was served with a lovely fresh and zingy chimichurri dip.pra4Their hip hoppers, which are essentially fresh appams served with different dishes are a real treat. We had the Hip Hopper with Green Potato and Hip Hopper with TBF Lamb. The appams were thin and crisp on the outside and spongy inside. The potatoes in the veg one were cooked in a green curry made of spinach, coriander, and green peas, which was very unusual and tasty, and the tbf (tender but fried) lamb had robust flavors without being overly spicy, and the topping of fresh coconut shavings balanced out the spices.pra5For main course, we went with the New Age Khow Suey and the Japanese Curry Infused Nihari with Asian Bun. The khow suey was plated beautifully with soba noodles and steamed vegetables in the center of the bowl, with the coconut broth on the side for us to pour. It came with accompaniments like lemon, fried onions, garlic chips with lemon salt, and spring onions, which we added to the broth, which had a mild and balanced flavor. The cool element on the plate was the peanut butter biscuit which was served with the khow suey, in place of the regular toasted peanuts.

The Japanese Curry infused Nihari with Asian Bun was a cracker dish, made with slow-braised lamb shanks in a thick, robust-flavored Japanese curry infused with Indian spices. The blend of Japanese and Indian flavors worked so well to give the gravy a nice umami taste, making this a must-have dish! The Asian bun served alongside was buttery and flaky, and is best-had if left to soak up the gravy.

We rounded off this meal with two really nice desserts- the Canoli was crunchy and light, and generously filled with pastry cream mixed with chocolate chips and a touch of cinnamon. The creamy filling was counterbalanced with some tart raspberry coulis, fresh fruits, and raspberry financiers. From the plating of the dish to the different flavors and textures on the plate- everything was simply amazing.pra6Next, we had the Mango Chiffon Cake, which had a light and fluffy chiffon cake which was toasted to get a nice thin crust on the outside. The cake was topped with a mix of mango and coconut and some freshly diced mangoes. The vanilla bean ice-cream served alongside was really tasty as well.

The service throughout the meal was exceptional- warm plates, being changed after every course, each dish being explained properly- the works. And Mr. Rohit Lohani took good care of us and explained the concept of the place to us, gave us suggestions on the dishes to try, and took our feedback after the meal.

Overall, to taste dishes which are different, yet familiar, in a cool, chic setting with great service, do check out Pra Pra Prank!

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Location: Shop No. 24, Ground Floor, DLF Cyber Hub, Gurgaon
Phone No.: +91 9599965282

Review: Bombaykery, Safdarjung Enclave

Review: Bombaykery, Safdarjung Enclave

My favorite bakery in town has opened up yet another outlet- and this time it’s right next door, so I simply had to make a trip down there. They have tied up with Big Fat Pizza and Kaffa Cerrado to open a shared space which is a really cool idea. Their display shelf was as lavish as always with tempting goodies ranging from cupcakes, macarons, cakes, cookies, biscotti, tarts, cheesecakes, to the savory pao bombs, quiches, pattice, and croissants.

I got myself a box of 9 mini desserts packed with all my favorite items- Nutella Mini Cupcake, Chocolate and Salted Caramel Tart, Lemon Tart, Salted Caramel Choux, Dark Chocolate Fudge, Milk Chocolate Fudge, Classic Cheesecake, Blueberry Cheesecake, Lavender and Passion Fruit Macarons. The Nutella cupcake had a lovely, velvety nutella icing on top with a soft and spongy cake; the tarts both had thin, crisp and buttery tarts which were baked to perfection and filled generously. The lemon one is perfect for those who like tangy-sweet deserts, as it gets the tanginess of the lemon just perfect, and the other tart had a layer of gooey salted caramel topped with a layer of dark chocolate ganache- so could anything sound more perfect than that? The salted caramel choux had a feather light dough filled to the brim with the most delicious salted caramel pastry cream, and the fudges were both dense and decadent and had the perfect consistency. The cheesecakes had a nice biscuit-base with creamy yet light cheesecake; the passion fruit macaron had a near-perfect macaron shell, but the lavender one was a bit hard. The flavors of both macarons, though, were on point.

bom6

bom7I have been a fan of their cheese sticks and almond biscotti, so got a jar of each packed. The cheese sticks have a nice slight spicy kick to them and are just baked to perfection, and coated with black and white sesame seeds to add flavor and texture. The biscotti is just adequately sweet, really thin and crisp, and tastes amazing. Their granola is another nice option, to just munch on, or add to yogurt for a nice healthy breakfast.

They have also introduced to their menu some new pastries, out of which I tied Satin and Frasier and was really impressed with both. They looked like pieces of art and tasted simply divine. Satin had creamy and rich Belgian white chocolate mousse and Valrhona dulcey cream coating a layer of soft almond sponge that was topped with a delicately flavored passion fruit and coconut caramel, and these elements were atop a lime and milk chocolate-flavored crunchy base that added texture to the dessert. The dessert was then decorated by coating it with chocolate spray and then topping it with finely diced strawberries, gold leaf, and shards of white chocolate. The passion fruit and lime flavors nicely counterbalanced the sweetness from the white chocolate to make for a great medley of flavors. The Frasier was no less- from the cute little heart-shaped outer chocolate layering that had a lovely sheen to it, to the mélange of flavors inside it. The dessert had a light and airy vanilla mousse that enveloped strawberry and raspberry jelly and a pistachio sponge, all atop a crunchy base. The bright and fruity flavors of the jelly, with the earthy flavor of the sponge worked beautifully well together. Both these desserts are must-haves!bom5Overall, Bombaykery is a place that never ceases to impress me, and is highly recommended!

Overall Rating: 4.75/5

Location: B6/5, Ground Floor, Local Shopping Complex, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi
Phone No.: +91 9599450631

Review: Salad Days

Review: Salad Days

Salad Days has a diverse range of salads on their menu- from fruit based salads, to legume-based, vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. Each salad comes with a dressing that is designed to complement and enhance the flavors of the salad, and there are details regarding the calories associated with each dish.salad days1I recently ordered a few items from their menu, and the food was delivered right on time, and the items were packaged neatly with each box was nicely labeled. Not just that, each dressing had a label connoting which salad it was meant for.

The Exotic Fruit Bowl had a mix of fresh, juicy fruits such as kiwi, Californian grapes, Egyptian orange, Washington apples, pineapples, pomegranate, cherries, sun melon cubes & fresh mint leaves and was topped with candied walnuts for crunch. The dressing was made with fresh lime & honey and it really uplifted the flavors of the fruits.

The Indian Earth Bowl was a hearty and delicious bowl, which at just 249 Kcal, made for a full meal. It had ragi and wheat flakes, fox nuts, mixed lettuce, char grilled corn and potatoes, mushroom, colored bell peppers, broccoli & red onions, served with a spicy sweet mango dressing and multi grain bread rolls. The ingredients blended well together and the dressing had the right balance of sweet and spicy flavors.salad days2The Roasted Chicken Salad at 196 Kcal, is a delicious meal made up of tender, pan grilled chicken with crisp lettuce greens, bell peppers, black olives and red onions. The salad was again served with a multi grain bread roll and a honey Dijon and roasted peppers dressing which had a nice kick to it.salad days3The Chicken Teriyaki Salad had Teriyaki-style chicken that was coated with sesame seeds, assorted lettuce, assorted bell peppers, broccoli, spring onion, white radish & cherry tomato. Also, the additional touch of thinly sliced nori sheets just made the salad pop, and the ginger teriyaki dressing was super flavorsome.salad days4We also tried the Wild Berry Smoothie that had blueberries, strawberries, chia seeds and bananas, blended with strawberry yogurt, and tasted really nice without any artificial sweeteners.

Overall, Salad Days provides a nice range of delicious, healthy salads and smoothies, with good portions that are totally value-for-money!

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Location: 628, Udyog Vihar Phase 5, Gurgaon
Phone No.: 096438 00902

Review: Big Fat Pizza

Review: Big Fat Pizza

Big Fat Pizza offers up some amazing pizzas, and they have a really cool space in Safdarjung Enclave which has indoor and outdoor seating, and is shared among them, Kaffa Cerrado, and Bombaykery.bfp1We started off with the Truffle Fries, as suggested by James, and it turned out to be a fantastic suggestion. These fries were among the best we’ve ever had with the perfect texture- crispy on the outside, and soft on the inside without being oily. The fries were sprinkled with finely chopped parsley and grated parmesan, which enhanced its flavors, and the finishing touch was the truffle oil, which gave them a nice earthy taste. The sriracha mayo dip served alongside was nice as well.bfp2Next, we had their famous Chicago-style deep dish pizza and went with the Deep Margherita variant. Though it wasn’t as “deep” as we expected or as this style of pizza is originally supposed to be, it still tasted great. The marinara sauce, which really is the soul of a deep dish pizza was absolutely killer- rich and robust, with the tanginess of the tomatoes coming forth. The crust was nicely baked, and the pizza was topped with mozzarella,, a little bit of pesto, and some basil leaves.bfp3We also tried their Neapolitan crust pizza, which, in terms of the crust was quite close to the original, but not really there. We went with the Pepper Jam flavor, and the toppings were delicious. The marinara shone through here as well, and we loved the interplay of sweet and spicy flavors from the jalapenos and the onion jam and red peppers.bfp4Overall, though the place is a bit on the pricey side, but the food is really good and should certainly be tried.

Overall Rating: 4/5

Location: B6/5, Ground Floor, Local Shopping Complex, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi
Phone No.: 011 30806293

Review: HOG – Just Fork It

Review: HOG – Just Fork It

HOG, a late night delivery outlet that started with Shahpur Jat as the place for its first base kitchen, has now expanded and opened another one in Safdarjung Enclave. And with this expansion, they have added some really delicious new dishes to their menu, while retaining all their best-selling dishes from the previous menu. They operate from 7p.m. to 4a.m., and though there was a slight delay in delivering our order, the food reached us warm and packed well.

The Inside Out Burger had a juicy and well-seasoned chicken patty which was stuffed with gooey, melted cheese, along with their signature sauce, lettuce leaves, onions and tomatoes, in a soft bun. The burger tasted nice but the french fries that came alongside had become cold and soggy.

The Greenness Gracious Pizza had a crisp, thin base and was covered with a flavorful, fresh pesto sauce, and topped with loads of mozzarella cheese, cherry tomatoes, and basil leaves.hog1The Nutella Pancake was soft and fluffy and was coated generously inside with a thick layer of Nutella, and served with dark chocolate sauce. The best part was that the sweetness was not overwhelming.hog2HOG is a good place to order from to satiate those late night cravings.

Overall Rating: 4/5

Location: Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi
Phone No.: +91 96501 89848