Bombay Brasserie – reopens after 15 years

If you were born and raised in Worli, you have surely heard of the iconic restaurant – Bombay Brasserie. It ruled the city with its authentic Indian fare for quite a few years until it shut down in 2002. Now, after 15 long years, it has comeback with a bang.

The first ever outlet was launched in 1989, after which they launched multiple branches in Bangalore, Chennai and Kolkata. Located at Worli, Bombay Brasserie is an all-day diner that can house about 130-150 people at its four different dining zones. The decor is quirky and cheerful, with an indoor and al fresco section. White background with color blocked furniture, wooden chairs, swing seats and a cozy vintage vibe – what’s not to love? The staff is courteous and well-informed and the service is great too.

Think experimental and fusion Indian speciality dishes from different states in the country…Yup! That’s their USP. Whether you’re looking for Naga Ghost Pepper Wings, Andhra-style Chicken or Kashmiri Kebab, rest assured you’ll find it here. Their eclectic menu promises to bring out the best Indian flavors by literally serving you the country on a platter. Pair this and more with their super selection of mocktails, desi cocktails, beers or a variety of Indian teas and you’re sure to have a memorable night.

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Bombay Brasserie Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

A Royal Indian Experience at JW Marriott Pune’s Shakahari

If you follow me on Instagram, you already know that I love to travel…even if it means going to Lonavla for a nice Sunday brunch and back. So when I received an invite from JW Marriott Pune for lunch on Saturday, I instantly said yes! Because for me, an ideal weekend is one where I can getaway from the chaos of the city. Since I knew I had something fun to do over the weekend, I couldn’t wait for the week to quickly pass by. Luckily it did. Before I knew it, it was D-day.

I woke up at 8am as our scheduled time of departure from Mumbai was 9am. Since my pick-up point was Worli, I quickly got ready and left. Nikhil, our kind and polite driver had reached Worli Seaface in his white Innova way before time and was patiently waiting for us to come. We (that includes three of us), started for Pune at about 9.15am and were all set to see what the rest of the day had in store for us. Our car had been stocked with cold bottles of aam panna, lassi and several juices for the journey. Thankfully, due to a slight drizzle in the city, it wasn’t very hot or sunny and as we got onto the expressway, it began to rain and started getting a wee bit breezy. Needless to say, our comfortable drive became even more enjoyable.

We reached Pune at about 12pm and were at the property 40 minutes later (thanks to Pune traffic). As we entered, we were warmly greeted by General Manager Vineet Mishra and his kind and loving team. There was something about the place – it felt like home in an instant. I guess that’s why its so popular and buzzing at all times. We looked around for a while and visited its various outlets, starting with the ones on ground level – Pune Baking Co. (the renowned bakery and patisserie), Lobby lounge (which had a special wine promotion for the weekend), Spice Kitchen (their all-day multi cuisine restaurant that was prepping for the on-going Goan festival) and the JW Marriott Food Truck (which unfortunately wasn’t operational that day). Soon after, we proceeded to the next level to see Alto Vino (the Italian restaurant, serving lip-smacking wood-fired pizzas among other things and a variety of wines), Bar 101 (the elite whiskey and cigar bar that houses over 100 different types of whiskey) and Shakahari (their vegetarian restaurant serving authentic Indian specials). Next, we proceeded to Mi-a-mi (the hotel’s rocking night club that was getting ready for Bollywood night) and Paasha (their fine-dining restaurant and bar with an indoor and al-fresco section from where you can enjoy panoramic views of the city). After the property tour, we headed to Shakahari as we had been invited to sample its lip-smacking menu based on authentic Indian cuisines inspired by some of India’s royal, princely states.

A warm welcome with flowers and rose water, an extravagant table set-up and a tikka clad Maharaj Jai Kishen greeted each one of us with his pleasing smile and folded hands. Looking at the hospitality, we knew we were in for a grand feast. The menu, featuring a variety of traditional Rajasthani and North Indian preparations, had been crafted to provide a #RoyalIndianExperience to each one of us.

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‘We want to revive the culture of food in its most authentic Indian form. That is the philosophy at Shakahari – a royal dining experience. Keeping this focus, Maharaj Jai Kishen seamlessly blends tradition and flavor for each dish that is specially curated by him,’ said Mr. Vineet Mishra, the friendly and ever-smiling general manager of the hotel.

Bright and shiny silver Thalis with napkins perfectly folded and knotted gave us a true royal feel. As we took our seats, a server came to each one for a handwash. (In India, a traditional Thali is best enjoyed when eaten with the hands, without any cutlery).

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We were all set for our grand feast which began with some Fratelli wine, a variety of starters served with a bowl full of papad, various chutneys and pickles like plum, peanut, mint and mango as accompaniments. The starters consisted of:

– Dahi Wada
– Palak Patta Chaat
– Rajma Lasooni Salad
– Palak Chawli Tikki
– Beetroot Tikki
– Amritsari Paneer
– Besan Chilla

Out of all the above, the rajma lasooni salad with fragments of burnt garlic and beetroot tikki were my most favorite.

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After a break of about 15 minutes, we were then served our Rajasthani mains. I’m sure you already know that a traditional meal in Rajasthan is incomplete without its speciality dishes like

– Dal Batti Churma: lentil preparation made with wheat flour dough, served with dal, grounded flour dessert and dollops of ghee
– Ker Sanger ke Kofte: ker, bamnera bean dumping cooked in fresh tomato gravy
– Jodhpuri Gatta Curry: steamed gram flour dumpling, cooked in spicy, tangy, hung curd gravy
– Gatta ka Pulao: spiced gram flour dumpling, dum cooked with basmati rice
– Subz Panchmel: a melange of five vegetables, tossed in dry spices and flavored with asafoetida
– Phulka, Palak Poori & Ajwaini Poori

To be honest, I find Rajasthani food too heavy so I avoid eating too much. But here, it was served with so much love that I just couldn’t say no. I thoroughly enjoyed most of it, especially the gatta curry and ker sanger koftas but I wanted to leave space for the rest.

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Right after the Rajasthani meal, we were served some speciality North Indian preparations like

– Dum Paneer Kasoori: homemade cottage cheese, simmered in rich tomato gravy, flavored with fenugreek seeds
– Subz Makhmali Kofta: vegetable koftas filled with dried plums and almonds, simmered in a cardamom cashew gravy
– Pindi Choley: chickpeas, slow cooked and flavored with whole Indian spices, tempered with dried pomegranate seeds and smoked with desi ghee
– Dal Shakahari: black lentils, soaked overnight and rajma, tempered with cumin, fresh garlic and white butter
– Gucchi Pulao: long grain rice flavored with whole spices
– Stuffed kulcha, Roti, Naan, Laccha Paratha

The dum paneer kasoori and dal shakahari were amazing. So flavorful and delicious. The pindi choley reminded me of my recent trip to Amritsar. I wanted to go for a second helping but I had to leave some room for dessert. Considering the lavish variety our meal had to offer, I was eagerly waiting to see what the desserts would have in store.

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Once everyone was done with their meal, the friendly and hospitable staff of Shakahari, escorted us to the ‘Mishtan Bhandar’ – a room filled with sweet treats. Yes, you read that right. A ROOM full of sweet treats! Everything was so tempting that for a minute I almost forgot I had to take pictures and started helping myself. We could choose from a selection of freshly cut fruits like guava, apple, pineapple, dragon fruit among others or desserts like

– Mango Rabadi
– Malai Kulfi
– Vanilla Ice Cream
– Kesar Pista Kulfi
– Moong Dal Halwa
– Gulab Jamun
– Lychee Gulla
– Kaju Pista Roll
– Moti Chor Ladoos
– Kadambari
– Badambhog
– Ghewar

I literally wanted to try everything but unfortunately was already pretty full. So I tried a small piece of the ghewar and some mango rabadi – both, absolutely awesome. And finally finished off with some paan.

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While chatting with Mr. Mishra, I was intrigued to know how long it took to formulate such a royal meal. ‘About 4 months and 60 tastings later we finalized on the menu,’ he said. Unlike most Thali places where you’re served in a rush, the meal at Shakahari is timed (approximately 60 minutes per sitting) so every guest can absorb the food and enjoy every bit of the experience. The menu keeps changing every now and then so there’s always something new to look forward to.

An hour-long chatting session and a few cups of green tea later, it was time to bid adieu. So we thanked the wonderful team for their impeccable service and hospitality and proceeded towards the car, which once again had been stacked with still, sparkling water and other beverages. Our drive back was just as enjoyable as before as we didn’t get any traffic and were home in less than 3 hours.

All-in-all, it was truly a fun getaway from the city – even though it was just for a few hours. Will most certainly be going back soon again…this time for more than just a meal!

Just Say Cheese

As a kid, I remember fussing over methi and palak rotis. Like come on! You’re meant to enjoy candies, chocolates, cheese and other fun stuff while growing up. Why methi and palak? But, my mother clearly thought differently. She had decided – no matter what happens, this fussing needed to stop. Cheese was probably one of the few things I would readily eat without any drama. The word itself would bring a smile to my face. So, she very smartly started grating blobs of it on my rotis and parathas and that’s how I learnt to eat them!

By now, I’m sure you’ve figured that I love cheese. To me, it is not just another dairy product, it is everything! You pair absolutely anything with the right kind of cheese and you’re good to go. It’s versatile and oh-so-yummy! But still many people find it intimidating. I wonder why? Maybe because of its countless types, hard to pronounce names, complex textures or due to lack of knowledge. Whatever the reason, I hope this and the coming posts will be helpful as I’m all set to share some easy-wheezy recipes and fun facts about my all-time favorite cheeses. Are you ready?

#FYI – Most cheeses are made from cow’s, goat’s or sheep’s milk and fall into one of the below mentioned categories:
– Fresh & creamy: Mild in taste, moist and soft with a creamy texture, great choice for salads
– Soft & semi-soft: Range from mild to pungent, can melt well, best choice for grilled sandwiches and fondues
– Hard & semi-hard: Salty, nutty flavors, can be aged for several months or even several years, texture can be semi-firm or firm
– Bloomy rind: These cheeses have a white rind on the outside but are super soft, creamy and yummy on the inside
– Blue cheese: Contains penicillium so the cheese will always be spotted or veined, has a distinct smell, strong, sharp and salty in flavour.

In this post, I’ll tell you about my favorite cheeses in the first category.

1) Feta:
A famous Greek cheese, traditionally made with sheep’s milk or a mixture of goat’s and sheep’s milk.
Flavour: salty, slightly sour
Texture & Color: crumbly and slightly grainy, white in color
Pairings: best enjoyed when crumbled upon salads or pies

2) Ricotta:
An Italian cheese made from sheep, cow, goat or Italian water buffalo milk.
Flavour: slightly sweet
Texture & Color: similar to cottage cheese but softer, smoother and lighter, white in color
Pairings: combines beautifully with sugar, cinnamon and chocolate so is mostly used in desserts. One can also make lovely, creamy dips with Ricotta or sprinkle some over pasta. In India, it is often used as a substitute for paneer (though both are not the same) while making ras malai.

3) Cream cheese:
Originated in Europe and is made from milk and cream, available in low fat or non-fat varieties
Flavour: mild, slightly tangy and sweet
Texture & Color: smooth, creamy, rich and indulgent, white in color
Pairings: easily spreadable when at room temperature and pairs well with crackers, bagels and sandwiches. Can also be mixed with other ingredients for dips and spreads.

4) Fresh Mozzarella:
An authentic Italian cheese that’s packed in water solutions to help last longer.
Flavour: mild and milky
Texture & Color: creamy and soft, pearl white in color
Pairings: This cheese is delicious just as is or with a pinch of salt, pepper, herbs and olive oil. You can also make yourself a version of Italy’s famous Insalata Caprese that includes fresh mozzarella, sliced tomato and basil.

Recipes:
1) Watermelon & Feta Salad:

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Ingredients:
1 packet roquette (to be cleaned and soaked in cold water)
1/2 iceberg lettuce (to be cleaned and soaked in cold water)
1/2 water melon (remove seeds and cut into chunks)
1/2 cup feta cheese
3 slices bread
5-8 toasted pine nuts
5-8 caramelized almonds/walnuts

Dressing:
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp rock salt
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp pepper

Method:
– Remove the water from salad leaves and keep aside
– Cut the bread slices into croutons, toast in the oven and keep aside
– To caramelize almonds/walnuts, heat 3 tbsp sugar in a flat pan and add a spoonful of water. Once sugar changes to a light brown color, add the almonds and mix until the sugar darkens a bit. Switch off the gas and drop them quickly on a foil paper
– To make the dressing, mix all the ingredients, shake well and keep aside
– In a bowl, mix together salad leaves and water melon chunks, then pour the dressing and crumble feta cheese. Serve.

2) Herbed Ricotta Dip:

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Image sourced from Pinterest

Ingredients:
1 cup fresh, creamy ricotta
3 cloves garlic (peeled & crushed)
1 tbsp snipped chives
1 tbsp mint powder
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt (to taste)
Pepper (to taste, preferably freshly ground black pepper)
Oregano (to taste)

Method:
– Mix all the ingredients together.
– Adjust seasonings as per taste
– Refrigerate for 2-3 hours
– Serve with sliced ciabatta or lavash.

3) Garlic & Herbed Cream Cheese Bagel:

Ingredients:
3 cloves garlic (peeled & crushed)
1/2 packet Philadelphia cream cheese
1 tbsp snipped chives
Salt (to taste)
Pepper (to taste)
Thyme (to taste)
Oregano (to taste)

Method:
– Mix all the above ingredients in the bowl
– Adjust seasoning as per taste. Can also add some lime juice, if required
– Spread on bagel and enjoy.

4) Insalata Caprese:

Ingredients:
2 large ripe tomatoes
1 packet fresh mozzarella
1 cup fresh basil (washed well & dried)
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Seasalt (fine, to taste)
Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)

Method:
– Thinly slice tomatoes & mozzarella, same size
– Place on a flat plate with fresh and dry basil leaves
– Sprinkle with oregano, sea salt and pepper
– Drizzle olive oil and serve.

*All the above mentioned cheeses are available at Godrej Nature’s Basket & Foodhall in Mumbai.
*Part 2 coming soon.

8 Protein-Packed Foods That Are Bare Necessities To Build A Better Physique – MensXP

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Working out definitely plays a vital role in cutting off that extra flab but a good, nutrient-infused, protein-rich diet is just as important. Why proteins? Because they are the building blocks of your muscles. A complete protein source is the one that has all nine essential amino acids that the body cannot produce on its own – phenylalanine, threonine, histidine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine, valine, methionine and tryptophan. Without proteins, the human body cannot function normally. Proteins also take more time to digest than carbohydrates, and hence, make you feel fuller and binge a whole lot lesser. The following 8 protein-packed foods not only help in weight loss but also keep you active. Keeping in mind the requirements of your body, pick from our list below.

1) Milk

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Milk contains all the essential amino acids, which means it is a complete protein and can be used by the body for growth and repair. In reality, it includes two types of protein: casein and whey, both are known to be high-quality, muscle-building proteins. Casein accounts for 80 per cent of the total protein content, while whey makes up the remaining 20 per cent.

2) Cheese

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According to specialists, cheese is the chief dairy source of proteins. Made from pressed milk curds, there are over 300 different varieties available in the world. And guess what? Each cheese contains different amounts of proteins and nutrients. A cheese with low moisture content usually tends to contain more proteins than others. It also contains a host of nutrients like calcium, zinc, Vitamin A and B12. Research says Parmesan, low-fat mozzarella and cottage cheese have the highest protein content of all cheeses.

3) Chicken

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When it comes to high-quality protein, chicken is often recommended by nutritionists and counsellors. It is a complete source of protein and contains a relatively low amount of fat (compared to red meat). What’s better? If you’re good at kitchen experiments, you can actually make a scrumptious post-workout meal, a cosy dinner for the family or a date-night dish with chicken.

4)  Fish

Protein packed foods for a good physique© Thinkstock Photos/Getty Images

A kind of food with exceptional nutritional value, just like meat, fish is also a complete protein. Apart from that, it provides a variety of vitamins and minerals like Vitamin A and D, phosphorus, magnesium and iron, and is a great source of calcium too. It is soft, easily digestible and low in fat.

5) Beans

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Part of the legume family, beans are great sources of fibre and proteins that provide minerals like iron, folic acid, potassium, magnesium and Vitamin B-6. They lower the risks of cholesterol, cardio vascular diseases and blood sugar. Though there are various kinds of beans available in the market, soybean offers the highest amount of proteins as it is the only bean that contains all the essential AAs required by the body.

6) Peas

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Packed with plant-based proteins, fibre and micronutrients, peas possess anti-inflammatory properties that prevent Alzheimer’s, osteoporosis, arthritis and bronchitis. Small in size, they mix well with nearly anything and are important for the immune system.

7)  Eggs

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Another perfect example of a complete protein, eggs are the cheapest, easiest and most convenient source possessing all the amino acids needed by the body. Though most of the protein is found in the white, the yolk is rich in calcium and Vitamin B12, involved in processes like fat breakdown, muscle reduction and healthy digestion.

8) Almonds

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As an excellent source of proteins, fibre and heart-healthy fats, almonds should be a part of your regular diet. Unlike other complete proteins, almonds do not contain all essential amino acids and should be consumed with other high-protein foods in order to meet your protein needs.

FYI, a handful of 10-12 almonds a day is all you need.

You can also read it on http://www.mensxp.com/health/healthy-habits/30943-8-protein-packed-foods-that-are-bare-necessities-to-build-a-better-physique.html

Experience A New High at Indigo Deli with Chef Amit Bajaj – Polka Cafe

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Move over molecular gastronomy as Indigo Deli is all set to roll out yet another innovative concept curated by Executive Chef Amit Bajaj and his brilliant team. Think Rum infused soup, Triple sec pumpkin pecan pie, Sangria braised short ribs, Sambuca grilled squid and lots more! Yes, you’re in for an intoxicating night as they are launching a brand new menu – the theme of which is alcohol-infusions. Boozy dishes made using local ingredients and different spirits, promise a new high in food with this 2-in-1 Chef’s Table.

We had a quick chat with the master chef himself on the city’s food scene, food trends and ofcourse, his new menu. Find out what he has to say.

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1) Alcohol – infused menu: now that’s an innovative concept! What is the inspiration behind it?
My team. The thought was sown by them – I just infused it with some alcohol and more.

2) The menu is quite extensive and I’m sure it must have been quite challenging to bring it all together? How did you go about with the pairing (e.g. which spirit to use with which dish?) How long did it take you to finalize the menu?
The pairing was quite a challenge for us. We wanted it to be appealing to all our diners and so we compiled it over a few trails and tastings. After almost 3 weeks of experimentation, we arrived at the final menu.

3) What were the challenges you faced and how did you overcome them?
The challenges were more in terms of acceptance of the combinations. To overcome this, we did a few trials and made sure that the flavors compliment each other and not confuse anyone.

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Triple sec pumpkin pecan pie, blue cheese foam

4) Indigo Deli has made its way into people’s hearts with its lip-smacking desserts and food. But this new menu is something completely different from the regular one. How do you think people will react to this new concept?
I am quite certain these desserts will be lip smacking as well. I agree, they are different, but then again I’m sure they will get acceptance from our guests. I’ve just gone back to old school basics.

5) Do you think alcohol – infused foods will soon be trending in the city?
It is an interesting concept and even though we do use alcohol in our regular menu, this menu composition has taken it to a whole new level. Trends are set by trendsetters and Indigo Delicatessen has always strived to be a game-changer, so you never know, this could be trending soon!

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Sangria braised short ribs, smoked cauliflower puree

6) What’s your take on the current food scene in Mumbai? 
The current food scene in Mumbai – is the best the country has to offer. Earlier there was a debate between New Delhi and Mumbai for the prime position, however, with the number of fantastic spaces opening in Mumbai over the last year – It wins hand’s down.

7) What, according to you, are the hottest food trends as of today? Which one would you like to see in the city? Any existing trend that you think is here to stay?
The hottest food trend as of today is food cooked with regional influences, organic produce, local ingredients etc. The local flavors and techniques are the big ‘in thing’ these days.

I would like the city to inculcate a value for local ingredients, seasonal vegetables and fruits. It has all become very commercial now. Genetically modified food is available all over and needs to be replaced with fresher, homegrown produce.

Yes according to me regional cuisine centric cooking will be around for a long time. It is here to stay, as people relate very closely to it and accept it for its true value.

8) What should one keep in mind while experimenting with a new concept? Any tips?
I guess experimentation has no boundaries. One needs to be open to everything and just delve into the very depth of it and do it with conviction.

So brace yourself to get tipsy with mains like Red wine mushroom ragout, Charosa Reserve Tempranillo lamb shanks among others and by chance if you’re still sober…. there’s dessert – Irish Whiskey Mascarpone parfait, frozen Chantilly espuma, Baba Au Rhum. Need we say more?

Details:
Venue – Indigo Deli, Palladium
Date – 3rd August 2016
Time – 8:00 PM (Dinner)
Pricing – INR 2000 without wine pairing and INR 3000 with wine pairing

Also on Polka Cafe – http://www.polkacafe.com/interview-with-amit-bajaj-3040.html

Foodie Reviews: 2 Brand New Places To Check Out This Weekend!

Mumbai, a paradise for food lovers offers something for every palate. But if you’re a foodie like me, selecting a restaurant is even more difficult than choosing a career….especially since there are so many new places opening up week after week. Sigh! So I decided to make life easier for you by sharing my experience at two lovely places, opening this weekend. While one is perfectly located at the bustling High Street Phoenix, the other is set right in the heart of Linking Road, Bandra. Both are great options to consider this weekend so if you land up going to either/both, let me know what you think 🙂

1) Jamie’s Pizzeria by Jamie Oliver:
We all know who Jamie Oliver is, don’t we? One of the world’s best-loved celebrity chefs who has not only made cooking fun for people like me but has also inspired thousands to understand and enjoy better food with his popular shows and YouTube channel. His belief in good food is what his restaurants, Jamie’s Pizzeria and Jamie’s Italian are built on. Since the former has finally come to Mumbai (after opening two branches in NCR), I’m pretty sure everyone is excited to know what’s in store.

Unlike Jamie’s Italian, the pizzeria has a more laid back atmosphere where anyone can come, grab a bite, have a drink, and just relax. Rustic, simple dishes are made from the best seasonal ingredients and are fresh and flavorful. Their dough is also prepared in the store every day and is complemented with the best toppings. The menu is a blend of traditional best‐selling Italian and contemporary dishes with a Jamie Oliver twist. However, don’t miss out on their ‘Today’s Special’ – a dish/dessert prepared with seasonal ingredients that changes everyday.

What I tried:
– Fritto Misto
– Chicken & mushroom lasagne
– Chilli Freak Pizza
– The Tuscan Pizza
– Homemade ginger beer
– Raspberry sorbet
– Proper Tiramisu with orange zest
– Affogato

What impressed me:
– As you enter, you can’t miss the panoramic cityscape featuring Mumbai’s iconic tourist spots like the Bandra-Worli sea-link, Gateway of India and The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel. Not just that, it also includes the city’s famous dabbawallas, cutting chai stalls, modes of transport (kaali – peeli, local train & rickshaw), among other things. The creative art work highlighting a day in the life of Mumbai surely gives the space a true essence of the city.
– It’s pocket-friendly…Surprisingly! Everything on the menu is below Rs. 600 which is really awesome, considering how crazy expensive dining out is these days.
– Coming to the food, the Fritto Misto consisting of melt-in-the-mouth fish, prawns and squid, served with a chunky Italian tartare sauce with pickled olives is battered and fried to perfection.
– The Chilli Freak Pizza made with their secret chilli sauce, jalapenos, vegetarian Parmesan, fresh chilli and mint is their signature pizza introduced specially for Indian outlets. Unbearably spicy with an equally hot after-taste; worth trying only if you’re a spice lover. Trust me when I say this, your mouth will be on fire for atleast 3-4 mins, if not more.
– The Tuscan is a nice, feel-good pizza with dry-cured pork ham, crushed tomatoes, mature Cheddar, mozzarella and rocket – amazing textures and flavors. How can anything with ham not taste good! Creamy mozzarella perfectly balances the sharp hints of matured cheddar along with the saltiness of the dry-cured ham leaving you with a burst of beautiful flavors in your mouth.
– Homemade ginger beer is cool, refreshing and light. #FYI – Ginger Beer is a naturally sweetened and carbonated non-alcoholic beverage produced by the natural fermentation of ginger spice, yeast and sugar.
– Desserts are simple yet flavorful. The sorbet is fresh and fruity while the tiramisu has an interesting tinge of orange which actually makes it quite different from the regular version. The Affogato – vanilla ice cream ‘drowned’ (as they describe it on the menu) in hot espresso ticks all the right notes. Hot espresso adds a beautiful punch while simultaneously complimenting the sweetness of the ice cream.

Overall, had an enjoyable experience. The only thing missing was Jamie Oliver himself 🙂

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2) Poetry by Love & Cheesecake:

If you’re walking at the bustling by lanes of Bandra, don’t miss out on this cutesy, all-day cafe from the founders of popular dessert brand, Love & Cheesecake.

Nestled in the heart of the suburbs, Poetry by Love & Cheesecake offers an extensive breakfast, dining and dessert menu that can be enjoyed in the comfort of a cosy and relaxed ambiance. The interiors are simple yet elegant and the space is warm and welcoming. Whether you’re seated at the top section or down, they provide good service and their servers are extremely kind and helpful too. Chef Amit Sharma and his team promise to offer delicate yet wholesome food made with the freshest ingredients and packed with flavors.

What I tried:
– Dark Knight
– Chopped Black Kale
– Ceaser Salad with Grilled Chicken
– Poached Eggs & Avocado on a Croissant
– Warm Roasted Vegetables
– BBQ Smothered Chicken
– The Diplomat Mousse
– Devil’s Desire
Crème Brûlée

What impressed me:
– The Dark Knight smoothie made with cacao, walnut, oats, yogurt, honey and banana though heavy is a flavorful early-morning pick-me-up
– Chopped Black Kale made with kale, almond slivers, aged gouda cheese, grated Parmesan and anchovy dressing is a perfect mid-day salad. The distinctive flavor of aged gouda blends in beautifully with the crunchiness of the kale and the anchovy dressing subtly lifts up all the flavors.
– Silky-smooth, pillowy soft poached egg, zingy avocado salsa and flaky croissant…Need I say more? This one is a sure shot winner!
– Eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, mushrooms and Mozarella delicately placed on warm Focaccia with a delicious pesto spread make this a hearty sandwich that can be enjoyed at any time.
– BBQ Smothered Chicken with home made creamy bbq sauce, grilled chicken and Cheddar makes this panini a wholesome meal by itself.
Crème brûlée is perfectly done: creamy, crunchy, not too sweet – all in one bite. From the other two desserts, I can’t decide if I like the smooth textured Diplomat Mousse (caramel mousse and toffee) more or the dark and dense Devil’s Desire (dark chocolate and brownie) served on a stick. All three desserts have different textures and flavors that make them stand out on their own.

Overall, had a great experience and will surely go back to sample the other items on their extensive menu.

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Address:
Jamie’s Pizzeria by Jamie Oliver:
High Street Phoenix, Opposite PVR, Lower Parel, Mumbai.

Poetry by Love & Cheesecake:
Shop No. 6, Pali Darshan, Junction of 16th & 33rd Road, Opposite Mini Punjab, Bandra, Mumbai.

*Meals were paid for by Jamie’s Pizzeria by Jamie Oliver & Poetry by Love & Cheesecake

7 Foods That Are Absolutely Necessary For A Healthy Lifestyle – MensXP

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We have all been victim to the ‘Foods You Must Not Eat’ list, haven’t we? For several years, we’ve heard people tell us not to eat this and not to cook that – the list is endless. We decided to make life easier by compiling a list of 7 power-packed super foods that must be a part of your lifestyle.

1) Nuts

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A constant on the health list, nuts are a great source of heart-healthy unsaturated fats. Walnuts, almonds, pistachios, peanuts – they are all great healthy snacking options that satisfy hunger pangs and are easy to pop even when on the go.

Tip: Eat about 8-10 nuts in a day or sprinkle some on top of salads, eggs, yogurt and smoothies.

2) Vegetable Juice

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Most of us find it difficult to eat green vegetables on a daily basis. Hence, having a glass of freshly made vegetable juice is the best way to cleanse your system. It helps in infusing vitamins, minerals and enzymes and is an instant energy booster. Furthermore, it also helps in weight loss.

Tip: Experiment with different variations by blending any three vegetables of your choice at a time. It takes about 10 minutes to prepare and must be consumed immediately. For ex, Spinach, Pumpkin and Carrot.

3) Yogurt

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A bowl of yogurt a day keeps all health problems away. It is the best source of calcium and is also rich in potassium, zinc, vitamin B12 and protein. Light and refreshing, it acts like a cooling agent for the system.

Tip: Enjoy a bowl of plain yogurt or a glass of thirst-quenching masala chaas. Yogurt topped with berries, nuts, granola, flaxseeds, and honey makes for a delicious breakfast option as well.

4) Eggs

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Eggs are one of the nutrient-densest foods. Eggs help boost health and prevent diseases. From avoiding heart illnesses to being good sources of antioxidants that protect the eyes – eggs have innumerable health benefits. They are excellent sources of vitamins and are also rich in iodine and phosphorus – essential for healthy bones and teeth. Not just that, they’re also easy to prepare and extremely delicious!

Tip: One can safely eat about two eggs a day. Whether boiled, half fried or scrambled, they can be eaten in any way – varieties are endless.

5) Pulses

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If you are vegetarian, pulses are your best bet to consume proteins. They are the main building blocks of the body and are incredibly important in every diet. Ever wondered why athletes and bodybuilders consume extra proteins? It helps them bulk up! Muscle and organ builders, proteins contribute to weight loss by reducing appetite and thus reducing calorie intake.

Tip: The best sources of proteins are meats, fish, eggs, dairy products, legumes and nuts.

6) Flaxseeds

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Known to keep conditions ranging from acne to anemia at bay, a tablespoon of flaxseeds is best enjoyed when ground well. Most fitness enthusiasts are aware of the benefits of proteins and fibre – both are equally important in bodybuilding. Since flaxseeds provide both, it should be consumed daily. It also provides Omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins and micronutrients and reduces the risk of cancer.

Tip: Sprinkle them over eggs, bhel, pancakes and yogurt or simply make a masala mix and use them in your regular food.

7) Prunes

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Prunes or dried plums contain vitamins and minerals including iron and potassium that help relieve constipation and prevent obesity. They are regular components of a weight-loss diet and can be eaten at any time of the day.

Tip: Eat them as is or add sliced prunes to oats and salads.

You can also read it on http://www.mensxp.com/health/healthy-habits/30737-7-foods-that-are-absolutely-necessary-for-a-healthy-lifestyle.html