Wednesday, 2 September 2009

A slice of Kerala

Treat yourself to dishes that’ll send you on a nostalgic trip, writes Sneha May Francis

here’s no place like home. And there’s no food like home food! And thanks to some restaurants we can treat ourselves to a taste of our mother’s cooking despite being so far away from her kitchen. And that’s why this eatery in Bur Dubai is our number one ‘home away from home’ stopover.
Aesthetically decorated, Kumarakom serves the best Malayali comfort food. Malayalam classics from the radio set the mood as we scan the menu, taking us back in time. The menu has all the favourite delicacies, so picking one dish turns out to be a big chore. After much debating, I settled for the vegetarian Kerala meals and Prawn masala, while the husband chose Appam and Chicken Stew.
Within minutes our table was loaded with aromatic dishes. The delectable Kerala meals spread consisted of an assortment of veggie delights – aviyal (a concoction of all vegetables in a thick curd-coconut mix), beans thoran (sautéd beans with grated coconut), banana chips, pickle, pappadam (crispy bread), sambar (lentil curry), rasam (peppered tamarind curry), and mooru curry (curd-based curry).
The servings were small, but were quickly replenished by the attentive waiters. So chances are that you could pile away without paying any attention to your tummy space! The Prawn masala was flavourful and fiery. Each bite reminded me of home, of my mom. I wouldn’t say it’s as good as her cooking, but it’s definitely the best I’ve tasted in a restaurant.
The appams (hoppers) were served hot off the pan, the edges nice and crispy, with the interiors soft and fluffy. And the lightly spiced Chicken stew proved the perfect accompaniment.
We tucked away to our fill. I guess it’s OK to indulge yourself once in a while!

What Kerala cuisine
Where Atrium Centre, Bank Street; 04 351 2122, 04 351 2124
Why For authentic Malayali food
Cost Bill for two Dh75. (On the occasion of Onam, you can pack and take home a delicious sadhya for Dh45. This offer is available only on September 2)

Published in e+, Gulf News, 27.08.09

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