Mumbai Food: How to eat healthy in 2019
Think pizza with kale sauce, and watermelon juice with amaranthus. If you're keen to kick-off the New Year with wholesome, tasty food, this Bandra space will keep you smiling
So, the last fortnight has been harsh on your system. You went overboard tucking into Christmas goodies, and don’t remember how many drinks you downed on New Year’s Eve. The resolution list is still fresh on your mind, and you are perhaps wondering how to begin ticking it off.
For this, the wall frames at Protein House on Hill Road are a good place to start: "Train your mind to crave healthy food; Junk food satisfied you for a minute, health food satisfied you for life" - motivation comes in many frame sizes, we’d say.
Harissa chicken skewers
This is our second visit here, and we’ve invited Devansh Jhaveri, who goes by the name Mafia Chef and is known for his specialty sauces including mango bhut jolokia, to share a meal with us. And also because he has lost 45 kg in 16 months with a keto diet. "Keto is a high-fat (clean fats only) medium-protein and very low-carb way of eating. It’s a lifestyle and not a diet," he says, looking at the menu. "For a vegetarian on a keto diet, there’s more than paneer!"
Peanut butter pancake
The 20-seater is empty when we walk in, and our server recommends basil pinacolada (Rs 249), which comes in a smoothie consistency, a perfect balance of fragrant basil and fresh pineapple blended in almond milk. From the protein concoctions section, we order watermelon beetroot lemon amaranthus (Rs 229), which is in dire need of some lemon. "The ingredients are high-quality," Jhaveri points out.
Multigrain veg omelette with cumin curd
After what seems like a long wait, our first dish to arrive is harissa chicken skewers (Rs 269). While we have to draw the server’s attention for cutlery, we give them a brownie point for offering steak knife, which makes it easier to cut into the meat. The curd dip is well seasoned with herbs but has no salt. The chicken is well marinated and juicy enough.
For appetisers, we order multigrain veg omelette with cumin curd (Rs 209). This, we feel, could well be our magnet to draw us back again. Finely diced veggies, fluffy texture of mixed flour pancakes and masaledar seasoning of garam masala make for a delish combination.
Jerk chicken leg
If the new year resolution mentions that you stay off pizza, the kale pizza (Rs 279) is a fine loophole. Made with ragi and spread with a kale sauce, the dish comes topped with slivers of almond that add a healthy touch. All the food here, we realise, is under-seasoned, but we kind of get used to it. A good way to start cutting salt in the diet. We remember, last time, the pizza had not fared well as a take-away, but fresh out of the oven, it is another story. "You don’t miss the pesto and it is surprising how kale sauce is used creatively," remarks Jhaveri.
Watermelon beetroot lemon amaranthus; (right) basil pinacolada
Our main course of jerk chicken leg (Rs 329), on the other hand, is over-seasoned, and can be reduced to at least 30 per cent. But the jus is delicious, and the demi glace brown rice pilaf is well executed.
For dessert, we opt for a peanut butter pancake (Rs 229), which comes with a dollop of in-house peanut butter. "The restaurant can surely command better price, as their portion sizes are so generous. But, after we pay the bill," Jhaveri quips.
TIME 10 am to 11.30 pm
AT Shams Palace Society, Shop 3, 98, Hill Road, opposite Kobe Sizzler, Bandra West.
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