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Sample these crunchy international delights

Let your fill of fried foods this season not be limited to pakodas and fries. There’s much to bite into if you set your eyes on international cuisines. We pick out the fried and tested

How does it happen that a bite of the crispy fried pakoda and a cup of hot tea can take the romance of the rains to newer heights? Well, what matters is, that it does. And while pakodas and its sidekick, the humble cup of chai, have always been trusted aides when it comes to the rains, cuisines world over, too, has opened up a host of options for people who want to indulge in some other fried foods. We checked out some restaurants in the city to see what options they have to offer to the customer when the streets are all wet outside.

Mumbai monsoon special: Reign in the rains


All the way from Burma
Chef Ansab Khan from Burma Burma tells us that they have a number of Burmese starters that are fried in rice flour. “The rice flour gives it a light consistency,” he says. Served with tangy dips, starters such as spring onion crisps and bottle gourd fritters are an ideal way to munch your way through a rainy day.



Spring onion crisps
Ingredients
>> 1 bunch spring onions, green part only, cut into 3 cm length
>> 1 tomato, sliced
>> 1 tsp hot paprika powder
>> 1 tsp salt
>> 2 cm ginger, peeled, pounded
>> 2 garlic cloves, peeled, pounded
>> 5 tbsp rice flour
>> ½ tsp baking powder
>> 500 ml peanut oil, for frying

For tamarind dipping sauce
>> ½ cup tamarind water
>> 1 tsp sugar
>> ½ tsp pounded ginger
>> ½ tsp pounded garlic
>> ½ tsp dried chilli flakes

Method
>> For the tamarind dipping sauce, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
>> Place the spring onion, tomato, shallot, paprika, salt, ginger and garlic in a bowl
>> Add the flour and baking powder and mix to combine. Gradually add water until the mixture starts to stick together.
>> Heat peanut oil in a wok over high heat. Form the mixture into balls and fry until golden brown and crisp.
>> Serve on a bed of banana leaf with the tangy tamarind dip.

The English season
Fish and chips have long been a favourite of the Brits. And for good reason. It’s comfort food that satisfies your appetite. And at The White Owl, small pieces of basa or rawas are fried in beer batter and served with home fries. “Served with tartar sauce, it’s the perfect dish to have on a rainy day,” says Executive chef
Kshama Prabhu.



Beer-battered fish ‘n’ chips
Ingredients
>> A fillet rawas or basa, cut into thin slices

For batter
>> 1 cup maida
>> Salt, to taste
>> Cracked pepper, to taste
>> 1 tsp seasoning powder
>> 1 cup beer
>> 1 tsp chopped parsley
>> ½ cup Dukes soda water

Method
>> Mix all ingredients for batter together and make sure there are no lumps
>> Dip in the batter and deep fry in hot oil till golden brown
>> For the fish season it with salt pepper and little lemon juice
>> Serve with hand cut chips and tartare sauce and lemon wedges

Trivia

America, ahoy!
Chili’s Grill & Bar’s Culinary contact, Abhijeet Gomare, tells us that the American restaurant serves a number of fried dishes. “We offer Fried Paneer Quesadilla Bites, Chicken wings and Country Fried Chicken. The Country Fried Chicken with mashed potatoes, garlic bread, corn on the cob and country gravy is a meal in itself,” he says. The Country- fried Calamari, with cubes of calamari crumbed and fried and served with a tangy dip.

Chili’s Bar & Grill, 13, Ventura Building, Central Avenue, Hiranandani Gardens, Powai. Call: 67419002

More to Brazil
Yes, we know you’re excited about all things Brazil at the moment. This should interest you in the country’s favourite fried dish, too — Acarajé. It is a Brazilian specialty and a popular street food. Brazilians prefer their acarajé seasoned with dried shrimp.

After frying, cooks split them open and fill them with spicy Brazilian favourites such as a condiment called caruru and a dish called vatapa — making them something like tacos. Acarajé is a rather labourious dish and is made with black eyed peas. Acarajé are brown and crispy on the outside and white on the inside, with a texture much like falafel. They have a mild flavour that goes well with different fillings.

Sicily crackle
Arancini (called arancine in Sicilian), are fried rice balls coated with breadcrumbs. They are believed to have originated in Sicily in the 10th century. Arancini are usually filled with meat sauce, tomato sauce, mo>> >> arella, and/or peas.

However, every restaurant experiments with local fillings in their arancini. Arancini con ragù, which consists of meat in a tomato sauce, rice, and mozzarella, is the most common.

Try Arancini Di Rosso at
Py Bar & Bistro, 201 Akruti Sky Park building, Bhulabhai Desai road, Breach Candy.
Call 23520005

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