Khordad Sal Mubarak!

The Feast

Still reeling over a celebratory Birthday weekend of Gods and Prophets.

While many of us celebrated Ganesh Chaturthi with scrumptious fare and delicacies, our Parsi brethren celebrated Khordad Sal; the birthday of their ancient spiritual leader- Zoroaster also known as Zarathustra. He is credited to being the founder of what we now know as Zoroastrianism.

Normally celebrated in pomp and glamor with ‘ghambars’ being held around, this year I had the pleasure of sampling a simple scrumtpious meal sent by @zuperbcateringandpopupgoa with a lovely historical lesson on culture, through food sampled.

On my plate Clockwise:
Kolni no Patiyo (Prawns) rich and aromatic with a sweet after taste went swimmingly well with hot steamed basmati rice. I portioned it half way through to change palate preference with Dhan Dar- Garlic dal and rice.

The crispy crunch of succulent pieces of Chicken Farcha partially dissected the flavours enough to give me a riot of taste tickling all the appropriate sensory organs.

Feeling peckish post, I dived straight for the Ravo drizzled with roasted cashew nuts. For the uninitiated, Ravo is made from fine semolina and is the Parsi version of Kheer and is synonymous with happy occasions. The community make it without fail on birthdays, navjotes, weddings and jashans.

Thank you for the celebratory inclusion Zubin Vazifdar Mani Vazifdar.

Once again Khordad Sal Mubarak to all my lovely friends.

#parsicuisine #traditions #learnsomethingnew #nolansatwit #foodjournal #foodwriter #samsungs9plus #mobilephotography

Something Tart-ish

Over the last few months of quarntine, I’ve been on the down low, stuffing myself with some amazing goodies from many start-ups chefs in the home space as well as food outfits around Goa (for now)

Lemon Meranguie Tart

Welcome to my #ATwitCanPick series.

The #ATwitCanPick Ground Rules:
1) All food has been ordered anonymously.
2) All meals have been paid for.
3) Most of the food photographed is on a smartphone
4) All reviews posted are of a personal opinion.

This weekend had me craving something ‘tart-ish’.The crust had the right amount of crunch,citing a fresh bake the minute ordered.

The lemon custard filling was draining down with every carved slice and the fluffy meringue topping was literally the icing on my weekend reminding me of my other favoutire pass time this monsoon- BBQ Marshmallows!!

Each Lemon Tart costs Rs.80/- (Farha also makes a Pie format if requested.) you can order yours by calling +91 90499 13151

#ATwitCanPick #lockdown2020 #homechefs #handpicked #hiddentreasures
#goa #nolansatwit

Eat & Drink the World Lonely Planet e-edition May 2020

Excerpt with Interview with LMPI (Goa’s Food Finds)

How did you come to be a Food Influencer?

Growing up in a family related to hospitality, deterred me from the food industry earlier. It was during my stint at Corporate where I started entertaining clients and prospects ever so often and the allure of a well plated dish captivated my senses. With my love for photography intact, I started documenting a few along the way and a decade later, I find myself placed here photographing my life and palate one destination and plate at a time.

What makes Goa so great for Food finds?
Goa has an innate charm of attracting people from all over the world. Some come here and never leave. With a heady mix of a multitude or cultural diversity food plays an important role in many expats and Indians spreading their roots across the Culinary canvas of the state. Influences are predominately intact with many Goan long lost traditions being revived and making their way into the culinary field by stalwarts who have been here since time immemorial. Being a tourist destination one has a myriad of cultural flavour that can be sampled here on holiday.

For the intrepid traveler- they can get a taste of everything global with a local influence. From the vibrant street food , read as ‘comfort food’ for the locals with their Ros Omelet and Cutlet Pao to Italian, Thai and Continental- Goa over the years has adapted to cater to world class cuisine being dished out on the fly.

This melange has a perfect symbiotic balance and this makes Goa unique in its catering to one and all, thus touting it as a Foodies paradise with sun, sand and the sea for company.

Could you recommend a few food finds from your Instagram (@nolansatwit) feed for us to sample next in Goa?

Neuri with dark chocolate gianduja
https://www.instagram.com/p/ByR18CSBkDA/?igshid=1bil14lq2ffa0

The Choo Chee Goong Laiseua
https://www.instagram.com/p/BqoaMQghiCM/?igshid=9cb5aaddgxjg

Shaptra
https://www.instagram.com/p/BU_nfP5AP6S/?igshid=wrusty3armui

Ros Omelet
https://www.instagram.com/p/BxWy37YBsON/?igshid=pluhf4chh9vm

Cheering to a Hurricane

Drinking wine 🍷….enjoying Goa in the monsoon 🏖…. chasing cyclones 🌊.The first part of our fun series with Nolan Mascarenhas has us talking about how to make the most of Goa Monsoons with his top food recommendation for vegetarians & some fabulous wine and a view to die for only at Antares!Also if you’re in Goa, you MUST pay a visit to Antares! 🙂 YouTube.https://youtu.be/OGdBKXAj5ds

Bullet for my Valentine 


This has nothing to do with the popular rock band or for that matter me taking a bullet for my Valentine in a metaphorical manner of speaking. Valentine’s Day is quite the bat signal in Gotham for the likes of a bachelor. A precarious time for singles out there. The perilous questions one has to dodge of getting ‘too serious’ or for that matter ‘having the talk’ of where relationships go in general.
 My advice to avoid this entire drama- fly far away, meet a lovely lady in Andhra Pradesh-visiting 6th century undiscovered caves and ask her if she’s busy for the evening. No she wasn’t Lady Lara Croft though that fantasy still remains in at the top of my travel list. Ladies love adventure. So when a wanderer on a ‘bullet’ (read Royal Enfield), comes along with a camera and a penchant to cook a meal, it’s a surety that one is not meant to be alone this day.

 The menu for dinner was working up the local flavors of the region to give her a taste of the state. Going ‘glocal’ for the global traveller. A gracious friend and foodie willingly allowed me to use his kitchen for this feat. Keeping in sync with the theme, I started out with a salad signifying the color ‘red’. Beetroot Thoran also known as ‘poriyal’ in the south of Andhra is an Ayurveda recipe with a 180 calorie count serving that requires 2 cups of grated beetroot, 4 tsp of grated coconut, 1 sprig curry leaves, 2 chopped green chilies, ¼ tsp mustard, ½ tsp cumin, 1 tsp urad dal, 1 tsp fresh grated ginger, 1 garlic clove crushed, 1/8 tsp turmeric and salt and oil as needed for additional taste. Heat a little oil in the pan, I normally use coconut for its health properties and add mustard and cumin and allow them to crackle. Add ginger,green chillies and curry leaves post and fry till the ginger gives you that flavorsome taste. Add the dals, red chillies and garlic cloves. Fry until the dal is golden brown. Add the grated beets and turmeric and sauté till lightly cooked. To speed up the process cover the pan. Add the grated coconut and fry for about 2-3 minutes and serve. It makes for a great salad option and can be had plain though locals prefer it with rice or chapatti.

 As a starter option, Miss Croft wanted to help and participate. Cooking together does add spice to any equation. All you men reading this, try it at home with your ‘better half’. It makes you a rather dishy offering to your respective partner. Obviously groceries were an issue with my friend not having had the time to shop. A cabbage at the far corner of the kitchen had me work up a Cabbage vada.

 Vada or vadai is a deep fried snack made from ground lentils that make for the perfect snack. Here’s what you need. ¾ cup chana dal, 2 /1/2 cups finely chopped cabbage, 1 tsp ginger paste, 1tsp garam masala, ¼ tsp red chili power, a handful of mint and coriander leaves, 2 green chilies chopped, 2 tsp rice flour (you can use more depending on the quantity you wish to make. This serves 10-12 vadas) and salt as needed.

Wash and soak the chana dal for 1.5 hours and drain completely. Cut the cabbage in quarters and dip them in hot water and leave for 5 minutes. Drain and rinse well and shred the cabbge into very small size bits. Mix with coriander leaves, salt, green chilies, the dal, curry leaves and pulse the remaining chana dal to a coarse mixture without adding any water. Add this to the cabbage mixture along with garam masala and red chili powder. Mix well and set aside for 10 minutes. Add 2 tsp of rice flour to the mix. Take a small portion of this mixture and check if it can be formed into a ball. It has to bind well or else add another tsp of flour and mix. Post which fry until golden brown and drain with kitchen tissues before serving for excess oil. In all honesty, the vadas did burn a little but even if I served her haggis at that time, she would have scored a 10 for effort.

I cheated on a fruit dessert with Figs. Also known as the forbidden fruit, it’s filled with antioxidants, flavonoids, fiber and potassium. Cleopatra couldn’t have enough of it, and the Greeks consider it sacred associated with love and fertility.

So men, the moral of the story lies in your ladle. Start cooking now.