Calories that count: Hyatt Regency Kolkata hosts South Indian food festival to aid Kerala flood victims
Hyatt Regency Kolkata is hosting a nine-day South Indian food festival, celebrating the culinary delicacies of the four states down South. But this time it is for a cause that will make you proud for adding those extra calories. The five star hotel has collaborated with Grand Hyatt Kochi to do its part in raising funds for the Kerala flood victims. A good part of the amount raised from this festival will go to Kerala relief Fund.
To give you an authentic taste of some of the finest, South India dishes, which are not usually available in any Kolkata food joints, chefs Balasubramanium and Chef Dinesh have flown down from Hyatt Regency Chennai and have curated a menu that is indeed unique and inviting.
“All the ingredients including some spices have been brought down, especially for this occasion to give Kolkatans a culinary experience that they will relish for a long time to come. There will be a cyclical menu for this nine-day festival, which will end with a lavish brunch on Sunday,” says Chef Balasubramanium.
The hospitality was indeed remarkable on part of the chef, who himself went to the kitchen to bring us the savouries. The fare started with chicken and egg kothu parantha and we have to admit that it was really very different from what we have so far chanced upon in some local diners. The spices were in perfect balance and the parantha was so soft and fluffy that it made you crave for more. There was a chicken dish from Chettinad, again a very unusual recipe. We could distinctly taste each spices, and all of us polished it off with the vegetarian biryani.
The meen polluichathu, a South Indian version Bengali paturi was just out of this world. The bekti marinated and steamed with the choicest of Southern spices including onion, tomato and tamarind, would blow your mind with the freshness of the dish once you unwrap the banana leaf.
But the best dish of the day probably was Mutton Sukka, a dish from Kerala, which can be had with Malabar paranthas, or appam. It tasted heavenly and the meat was succulent beyond all expectations.
“Usually we do not host South Indian fares during this time of the year, but the cause is so pressing that we felt it to be our social responsibility to stand behind those, who need our aid the most,” says one of the senior chefs of Hyatt Regency Kolkata, chef Abdul Wahab.
The vegetarians need not fret since the spread has a fair share of vegetarian items including beetroot thoran sautéed with coconut and Urulai roast, potatoes tempered with mustard seeds, aniseed, onion, garlic, curry leaves and green chillies. The Chettinad Kai curry, a mixed vegetable dish made with 22 home-ground Chettinad spices was appetising and one can have it with rice, chapatti or dosa.
The desserts were delectable, too. We had Paruppu Payasam, made of yellow moong daal and jaggery cooked in fresh coconut milk. It’s a popular sweet dish in Kerala and the jaggery in it kept reminding us of the very Bengali Nolen Gurer Payesh. For those who are fans of vermicelli, there was Semiya payasam, too.
If you ask for our verdict, we would advise that you better not miss it, because for a change, besides the good food, there is one good reason, too, to aid those, who really need your support right now.
Where: Waterside Cafe, Hyatt Regency Kolkata
When: Till September 16, lunch and dinner buffet
Price: Rs 1,499 plus taxes.