Food: Home truths about Kathiawadi cuisine
Relish fresh, rustic flavours of Kathiawar at an ongoing food festival in Mumbai
Every region of every Indian state boasts of culinary treasures that weave its history and culture. One such cuisine hails from Kathiawar in southern Gujarat. Kathiawadi food is varied, and popular in a few pockets of Mumbai. This month SoBo restaurant Soam has organised a Kathiawadi food festival to give city foodies the opportunity to savour and understand the fine characteristics of this regional cuisine.
Sev-Tameta Nu Shaak
"Many areas that fall under the Kathiawar region are low vegetation zones; people who reside here are very hardworking. Both factors reflect in the cuisine — the food is freshly cooked, which means there is little pre-preparation such as roasting, soaking, crushing for quick cooking," informs Pinky Chandan-Dixit, co-owner of the eatery. Dixit has co curated the menu with food blogger Rushina M Ghildiyal.
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Another factor that differentiates its food from the rest of Gujarat is the lack of sweetness in the vegetable preparations. The Kadhi too isn't sweet. Sweet, however is served on the side as jaggery and ghee.
Farsan forms an important part of Kathiawadi cooking. "A popular dish is the Sev Tamatar Curry. It has a simple jeera haldi tadka, with sev for farsan," says Dixit. The farsan fixation is seen in sweet, too with boondi. The biggest difference Dixit tells us is that while most Gujaratis use spices such as hing, chilli, turmeric and dhaniya (coriander powder) for everyday preparations, Kathiawadis add onion and garlic.
Soam being a vegetarian restaurant will not include meat preparations that comes from the sizeable Muslim population form the region, predominantly, the Memons. "Our acquaintances from the region make Undhiyu with meat too," adds Chandan-Dixit.
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About the special menu
On offer will be traditional recipes such as Val and Kand curry, Lilwa with Bajra Dhokli, Lasani Chana Batata, Bajra Churma (winter preparation), Dakor na Gota and more. Dessert will be served with a twist too in the form of Motichur Golgappe —puris dipped in saffron syrup, filled with rabdi and boondi.
Till: November 30, 12 noon to 11 pm
At: Soam, ground floor, Sadguru Sadan, opposite Babulnath Temple, Chowpatty.