Vegetarian Food Review – Rajasthani Food Festival Beckons at Westin Velachery, Chennai

AohcR93Otm5_jqTWcnsxcRJmNKwRK64SKEGIy1TnXtO0Westin, Velachery, Chennai is running a Rajasthani Food Festival and we were invited to taste the food and share our experience here.  Rajasthani Food Festival did not ring much bells in our foodie palate as we always associated it with dry desert region. Curious to know what is in store, we went for the buffet and were stunned at the lavish spread. We were left wondering if we would be in a position to taste (at the least) all of them.  Buffet was categorized as starters, main course, salad counter, chat counter and dessert counter.

Quite familiar with Gujarati cuisine, much of which has impact on Rajasthani food, we expected the spread to be majority vegetarian and we were proved wrong.  We leave that section to be covered by the ones who tasted it and continue on our vegetarian journey.

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We thank Westin for their hospitality in running us through the menu and knowledge sharing that enlightened us on the specialty of Rajasthani Cuisine.   Being a kingdom and ruled by Rajputs, Rajasthani food is rich by nature and depends a lot on dairy, quite evident by Desi Ghee use and liberal dose of dry fruits and saffron. It is fine to forget those extra calories to try out food as authentic and traditional as this churned out by Guest Chef Sataveer who has come in for this festival to satiate us with real Rajasthani food experience.

We thoroughly enjoyed the awesome Makhaniya lassi with consistency much lighter than the Punjabi one but richer with a dose of saffron.

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We began our starters  with Channe aur moong ki seekh and Khasta kachori.  Channe aur moong ki seekh was more like dal vada but the flavors were pretty unique. Khasta kachori was a winner with a pani puri look and well defined flavors. Accompanied by Mint chutney/peanut chutney/garlic chutney/pineapple chutney prepared by the chef, this was a gastronomic delight.

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One thing that was quite evident about our experience here is the importance of local spices on the preparation and its taste.  Rajasthani, Gujarati, Marathi, Bengali everything can taste the same if we use the spices available in Chennai. What drives the difference is the flavor of the spices in the area where the food comes from and Westin has just nailed it. The food tasted different sans that standard gravy we come across irrespective of the cuisine and made it a culinary journey of another sort.

Our main course included Palak paneer kofta, Bhindi jaipuri, Makai aur hara pyaz ki subzi,Nanne pyaz ki kadi, Jaipuri mewa pulao and Roti.

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Our highlights were

Nanne pyaz ki kadi – Signature dish with slightly burnt small onions with well balanced gravy (similar to mor kuzhambu)

Jaipuri mewa pulao  – perfectly cooked short grain basmati cooked in Dum with raisins, apricot and saffron. First time, had my hands on a veg pulao I could eat without any accompaniment.

We found the Palak Paneer Kofta and Makai aur hara pyaz ki subzi a bit imbalanced with salt on the higher side.

Among the desserts, we loved the Chena Malpua (exotic dessert made with pure ghee J ) with rabdi and Boondi kheer.

The review is on the items we tasted from the buffet and we had skipped many and here is the detailed list of items on the buffet menu – (Vegetarian only )

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WELCOME DRINK

Nimbu shikanji

Makhaniya lassi

SALAD COUNTER

Kukuda salad

Kachumber

Moong sprout salad

Dilkush salad

Shakar kand ki chaat

Pani Poori

Hari mirch ki achar/aam ki achar/nimbu ki achar

Dal baati /papad ki churi/bikaneri bhujia

Mint chutney/peanut chutney/garlic chutney/pineapple chutney

SOUP

Moong dal ki shorba

STARTERS VEGETARIAN

Channe aur moong ki seekh

Khasta kachori

MAIN COURSE VEGETARIAN

Baked vegetable ratatouille

Scallop potatoes

Palak paneer kofta

Bhindi jaipuri

Lehsuni papad ki subzi

Makai aur hara pyaz ki subzi

Bharwan Gatte

Nanne pyaz ki kadi

Kurumilagu cauliflower

Sichuan vegetables

Burnt garlic fried rice

Jaipuri mewa pulao

Steam rice

LIVE STATION

CHAAT COUNTER

(Papdi chaat, bhel poori, dahi poori, dahi papdi, kachori chaat)

Besan chillas with coriander chutney and ketchup

DESSERT

Chena malpua

Besan ki ladoo

Alwar ka Kalakand

Akrot ki Mithai

Interested to try out this special menu from Rajasthan, head to Westin. Here are the details –

Where: Seasonal Tastes, The Westin Chennai Velachery

When: 18th January – 31st January, 2016

Dinner: 7:00 – 11:00 pm

Price:  INR 1550 plus taxes per person.

For reservations, contact:

Address: 154 Velachery Main Road Chennai,Tamil Nadu 600042 India

Contact: Shrikanth 8939892022

 

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Posted on January 23, 2016, in Food, Restaurants and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. That was a delightful spread…always a lover of authentic Gujju and Rajastani stuff being a veggie by birth and choice!!!:)

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