With everything from pineapple paani puri to Patiala murgh, Zone by The Park hosts a Punjabi food fest
If you are someone who loves North Indian cuisine and also has a taste for all things Punjabi then Zone by the Park is the place for you. The hotel, which holds a food festival every month celebrating different cuisines of India, is hosting a Punjabi food fest that goes on till December 1. Every evening, the team whips up everything from piping hot paranthas to chilled lassi and the foodies in the city can’t seem to get enough of it.
When we sit down for dinner in an already packed restaurant, we notice that the live counters attract the maximum crowd. “We have live counters serving various flavours of paani puri like orange, pineapple, raw mango and also our signature rabri jalebi paani puri. But for those who love to keep it classic we also have the sweet and spicy variants,” says Sajeesh Balan, executive chef. Each mouthful of the classic gol gappa has a hint of tangy, sour and spicy flavours to it, with the mita paani (sweetened tamarind water) helping to take the edge off.
We quickly move on to kebabs that are slow cooked on the tandoor and served hot with mint chutney. The chicken and fish are marinated in spices and mustard oil and allowed to simmer slowly in the tandoor oven. The cubes of chicken have a distinct flavour from the ginger, garlic and turmeric rub, while the heat from the chillies is easily balanced by the hung curd used in marination. The kebab counter also has options like spice-rubbed paneer, potatoes and capsicum for vegetarians.
In bread we trust
Following it up, we try the breads like Amritsari roti, mirch pyaz ka kulcha, missi roti and kesar laccha paratha, which are also prepared and served hot from the live counters. The Patiala murgh, a stuffed
roti dish made with chicken filling wrapped in egg was easily our favourite. The stuffing has a heady aroma and taste from the garam masala. The egg wrap gives the rotis a soft and fluffy texture.
The accompaniments for the breads like chicken saag masala, paneer saagwala and sarson ka saag all involve mustard leaves which is a staple in Punjabi kitchens. While the use of whole spices like cinnamon and cloves deliver the aromatics, the flavours do not completely add up. If you are someone who prefers rice over breads, the food fest also has a small selection of biryanis and pulaos. We, however, recommend the signature tandoor breads over the biryani.
Nuts over sugar
We wrap up the dinner with some desserts like malpua, besan laddu and warm badam milk that offer distinct flavours of the North. The malpua, small fluffy pancakes soaked in sweet syrup, are the star of the counter as it has the right amount of sweet and is topped with crunchy pistachios. Apart from this,
the dessert table also has the usual fix of cakes, puddings and mousses.
Rs 950 ++. From 7.30 pm onwards.