Thursday, 18 November 2010

Curry for the Commander-in-Chief


When Alphonse’s picture appears on The Daily Constitutional (he’s our head waiter), Ann's wonderful words are never very far behind…



One of the requirements for being a head of state is being able to tackle state dinners. And for the Obamas on their recent visit to India, it was a very grand state dinner. Here’s the menu – with my approximate translations:


Fish tikka achari fish marinaded with spices and yoghurt, then grilled

Shahi jeera pulao rice pilau with black cumin seeds

Chicken shami kebab chicken cooked with lentils, then chopped finely with spices, formed into small cakes and fried

Pista murg chicken with pistachios

Balak papri chat spinach leaves dipped in chickpea flour batter, fried, and topped with fried crushed Indian bread

Sunehri kalai lamb lamb – if you know how it’s cooked, let me know!

Mahrani hara pyaz mushrooms with spring onions and herbs

Kyoti dal chickpea and black lentil dhal

Bharwan parwal stuffed gourd

Pineapple halva grated pineapple cooked with sugar and dried milk

Herbal teas, breads from rotis to naan, and churipayas (translation of this one welcomed too).

No alcohol is served at Indian state banquets – to the disappointment of Indian wine producers.

Of course the British have long been familiar with Indian food, and the first Indian restaurant in London opened in George St. W 1 in 1809. Not a success, the owner retreated to Brighton and started a massage and shampooing business.

For more foodie titbits, join my walk on Saturday November 20, 10 am at Monument tube, Fish St. Hill exit.

P.S… There’s a new London Walks Foodie website & dedicated Foodie Blog on the way! As soon as your table is ready, we’ll tell you right here and on Facebook and Twitter.


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