Secret Garden Café, Edward Road

Secret Garden Pasta

Making pasta at Secret Garden Café

Secret. Garden. Café. Three of my favorite words, all in a row.

Tucked away on Edward Road (betcha dunno where that is) off Queens Road (a clue, but eight out of 10 of you still won’t find it), this garden – okay, rooftop – café is so secret that only a select few know it exists. Which is a pity, really, since they serve some very good food indeed.

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Gina Braganza: Farewell

The Queen of Good Times :)

The Queen of Good Times 🙂

By the time I first met them, I’d heard so much about Gina and Carlton Braganza that I felt I already knew them. I’d visited Opus, their rocking little Goa-themed restaurant on Palace Road Cross a couple of times. My take at that time: decent food, inadequate service, bad sound system, great vibe.

In my role as editorial and copy consultant for the newly launched Food Lovers magazine, I contributed a column called “Inside Story”, in which we dined at the homes of various Bangaloreans to explore their attitudes to food and hospitality. The Inside Story written for the magazine’s second issue took place at the Braganza home.
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Goodbye Haroon!

Haroon Sait passed away last week. If you’ve ever had anything to do with food scene in Bangalore, you know who I’m talking about, and why it matters to me. If not – this is the man who established The Only Place in the 1960s, and gave this city steak, burgers, pasta, and pie when they were unheard of here. It was, truly, The Only Place you could get ’em. Keep reading…

Like Water For Chocolate

Like Wtaer for Chocolate by Laura Esquival

Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel

This is one of my all-time favorite books. Originally written in Spanish as Como Agua Para Chocolate, it is a love story, recipe book, and ethnic soap opera all rolled into one.

The book tells the story of Tita, the youngest of the three de la Garza sisters, who is forbidden from marrying, since family tradition dictates that she must care for her mother – the domineering Mama Elena – to the end of her days (sound familiar?) Keep reading…

Truffles: Move Over Piedmont, Here Comes Balehonnur

As Susan Boyle recently showed the world, appearances can be deceptive. Take the truffle, for example. It’s never going to win a culinary beauty contest – heck, it’s not even going to qualify for the first round. Yet this butt-ugly mofo manages to find its way into the kitchens of the rich, the famous, the culinary Rembrandts, the nouveaux riche, the wannabes and even the don’t-wannabes. People pay hundreds of dollars for a single top-quality truffle: an astronomical sum for a gastronomical luxury (okay, that was uncool, but I couldn’t resist).

Made in India...

Made in India...

To learn that these stinky, blob-like mycorrhizae (look it up, baby!) have been growing right under our noses, uncelebrated, right next door in Chikmaglur, came as a bit of a shock. When chef extraordinaire Abhijit Saha invited me to his swish new restaurant Caperberry to check out ‘The Great Indian Truffle’, I was there before you could say “tuberous fungifus”.

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Food Art by Carl Warner

This one is thanks to my best friend Melanie Coelho, who brought these amazing works of art to my notice. If you’re someone who thinks kids ought not to play with their food, take a look at these, and rethink your stance. Every element in each of these five images is crafted from food. Do click on the pics for a closer view.

Broccoli and bread

Broccoli and bread

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