6010-3724505 admin@juzlab.net
0 Items
Cheaper or even free: That is how much two bananas could have cost Rahul Bose

Cheaper or even free: That is how much two bananas could have cost Rahul Bose

rahul bose, rahul bose bananas, gst on bananas, hotel bananas, jw marriott hotel

rahul bose, rahul bose bananas, gst on bananas, hotel bananas, jw marriott hotel

Rahul Bose’s banana bill:  People also posted their ‘Rahul Bose moment’ on social media, sharing pictures of bills from hotels where they were charged a bomb. (Designed by Rajan Sharma)

A pair of ripe bananas for Rs 442. While the price was exorbitant enough for Rahul Bose to take to Twitter and post the bill of a five-star hotel, we also went bananas and tried finding out the fruit’s cost — no, not at sabzi mandis, but from chefs. Bose, in a video of himself at JW Marriott in Chandigarh, wrote: “You have to see this to believe it. Who said fruit wasn’t harmful to your existence?”. He had signed off with hashtag- #GoingBananas

The cost of the humble bananas, presented as a “fruit platter”, has left a certain section of the hotel industry stunned as well. Chef Manish Mehrotra from Indian Accent, which has been awarded the Best Restaurant in India for five consecutive years and ranked 17 in The World’s 50 Best, said he would have preferred to give two ripe bananas for free at his restaurant. “Buying something from the market and offering it without putting any extra effort, doesn’t justify the extra charge,” the chef told indianexpress.com.

“I know Rahul; the hotel he stayed at didn’t do anything to embellish the bananas, like cutting it in an appealing manner or garnishing with nuts, so it doesn’t really make sense,” he remarked.

Amey Pravin Mhatre, chef at De Partie in Taj Wellington, a property of Taj Mahal Mumbai, informed that they charge Rs 300 for a large fruit platter. He, however, added that because they (JW Marriott) did not have any other category to peg the bill under, it read ‘fruit platter’, saying that, “they could have billed it under Chef’s Special and charged him Rs 100 or Rs 200 for a couple of bananas”.

Advertising

When asked what the Taj charges for two bananas, the chef said that they sell it on MRP at Taj Deli Mart where guests can buy fresh organic fruits, cereals, variety of basic items as well as some healthy raw items at market rates. “We don’t charge a fruit platter price for two bananas. All the hype that this incident created wasn’t required because if you stay in a five-star hotel, you do not just pay for the products but also for their excellent services and for an actor like Bose it shouldn’t be a big deal,” the chef opined.

People also posted their ‘Rahul Bose moment‘ on social media, sharing pictures of bills from luxurious hotels where they were charged an ‘extravagant’ amount. The banana, commonly known as the poor man’s fruit in India, is among the most affordable and a dozen come for around Rs 40, with a kilo costing around Rs 60-65. An easy source of potassium, the fruit is highly preferred by fitness enthusiasts.

While sources in the hotel industry justified to The Indian Express saying that a five-star hotel (where room rent is Rs 7,500 and above per night) can charge 18 per cent tax on sale of an item, GST experts said that as per law, fresh fruits are not taxable at all.

Meanwhile, according to excise officials, the case is prima facie a violation of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. Chandigarh Deputy Commissioner and Excise and Taxation Commissioner Mandip Singh Brar ordered an investigation to probe the levying of GST on two fresh bananas at JW Marriott hotel and a three-member team visited the hotel in Sector 35 and seized the relevant records.

Assistant Excise and Taxation Commissioner Rajeev Chaudhary told Chandigarh Newsline, “ETOs have seized all relevant records. The question here is that fresh fruits are tax-free items, whatever the case may be, and ‘fruit platter’ is a taxable item. But the actor has been given fresh fruits and tax has been charged on it so we are investigating all angles. We are even probing whether relevant tax is being deposited regularly with the excise and taxation department or not.”

Bao Meets Baingan

Bao Meets Baingan

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

The interiors of Diva Spiced

On a rainy afternoon, few things can offer the same comfort as a crisp samosa dunked in a bowl of hot, soothing kadhi. At Diva Spiced, Ritu Dalmia’s modern Asian restaurant, the Kadhi Samosa listed in the small plates section of the menu is one of the chef’s recommendations, and as we bit into ours, we could see why. The “homestyle” kadhi is as silky as one could hope for, gradually softening the samosa’s flaky crust, but what brings the dish alive, surprisingly, is the asafoetida (hing). That this should be so is a testimony to, firstly, the humble — usually optional — ingredient’s underrated role as a flavouring agent and, secondly, to the chef’s ability to properly recognise and use it.

It is the little things like this that made our lunch at the Diva Spiced interesting. The restaurant, which used to be located in Meherchand Market, opened this week at a new location in Greater Kailash 1’s N Block Market. It’s a bright, cosy space, ideal for lunch. The focus remains on pan-Asian food, although the attempt seems to be to better integrate east and southeast Asian ingredients and techniques with regional Indian food. So the Prawn and Kasundi Dimsum was effectively a Bengali-style prawn inside a dimsum wrapper; it may have been served with an assortment of sauces (the lemon-coriander sauce was especially good), but the pungency of the mustard paste was enough to carry the dish. The Panko crusted Eggplant Bao was another instant hit: the play of textures — with the soft, chewy bao, the crunchy eggplant and the creamy aioli — was perfect. We just wish there had been more than two baos on the plate. The Crispy Duck with caramelised Hazelnut and Chilli Orange dressing also made excellent use of contrasting textures; we wish more places would make use of duck skin, fried till crisp, as a highlight element on the plate.

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

Khao Suey

For the main course, we ordered the Calcutta Malai Curry with asparagus, lotus stem, rice and pachdi and Goan Kafreal Marinated Chicken, sesame carrots and pickled beetroot. The chicken was cooked to perfection, but it didn’t really make the palate sing. That it was not served with rice or any other carbohydrate made the dish monotonous in terms of both taste and texture. With the Malai Curry there were no complaints; there was some initial trepidation about whether, when combined with the pineapple pachadi (served like a chutney on the side), it may become a little too sweet, but those fears were soon calmed down. The curry was indeed on the sweeter side — as it is meant to be, thanks to the use of coconut milk — but the pineapple pachadi added the requisite touch of piquancy and sourness, lifting the whole dish. With the crisp slices of lotus stem and rice, it became one of those dishes that truly feels like a meal. The asparagus added colour and fibre to the plate, but the dish would have been just as good without it.

The dessert, however, left us with mixed feelings. The Coconut and Lemongrass Panacotta wobbled tantalizingly, like a good pana cotta does, and should ideally have been smooth throughout. With every bite, however, we tasted what felt like desiccated coconut — an experience that rather marred our enjoyment of what was otherwise a lovely dessert.

Meal for two (without drinks): Rs 4,000

Address: Diva Spiced, N-6, First Floor, Greater Kailash – 1

In a new location and with a revamped menu, Diva Spiced mostly delivers on its promise of Asian food with a twist

In a new location and with a revamped menu, Diva Spiced mostly delivers on its promise of Asian food with a twist

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

The interiors of Diva Spiced

On a rainy afternoon, few things can offer the same comfort as a crisp samosa dunked in a bowl of hot, soothing kadhi. At Diva Spiced, Ritu Dalmia’s modern Asian restaurant, the Kadhi Samosa listed in the small plates section of the menu is one of the chef’s recommendations, and as we bit into ours, we could see why. The “homestyle” kadhi is as silky as one could hope for, gradually softening the samosa’s flaky crust, but what brings the dish alive, surprisingly, is the asafoetida (hing). That this should be so is a testimony to, firstly, the humble — usually optional — ingredient’s underrated role as a flavouring agent and, secondly, to the chef’s ability to properly recognise and use it.

It is the little things like this that made our lunch at the Diva Spiced interesting. The restaurant, which used to be located in Meherchand Market, opened this week at a new location in Greater Kailash 1’s N Block Market. It’s a bright, cosy space, ideal for lunch. The focus remains on pan-Asian food, although the attempt seems to be to better integrate east and southeast Asian ingredients and techniques with regional Indian food. So the Prawn and Kasundi Dimsum was effectively a Bengali-style prawn inside a dimsum wrapper; it may have been served with an assortment of sauces (the lemon-coriander sauce was especially good), but the pungency of the mustard paste was enough to carry the dish. The Panko crusted Eggplant Bao was another instant hit: the play of textures — with the soft, chewy bao, the crunchy eggplant and the creamy aioli — was perfect. We just wish there had been more than two baos on the plate. The Crispy Duck with caramelised Hazelnut and Chilli Orange dressing also made excellent use of contrasting textures; we wish more places would make use of duck skin, fried till crisp, as a highlight element on the plate.

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

ritu dalmia, diva spiced, diva spiced delhi, diva spiced restaurant, diva spiced gk, asian restaurant, meherchand market, food review, indian express news

Khao Suey

For the main course, we ordered the Calcutta Malai Curry with asparagus, lotus stem, rice and pachdi and Goan Kafreal Marinated Chicken, sesame carrots and pickled beetroot. The chicken was cooked to perfection, but it didn’t really make the palate sing. That it was not served with rice or any other carbohydrate made the dish monotonous in terms of both taste and texture. With the Malai Curry there were no complaints; there was some initial trepidation about whether, when combined with the pineapple pachadi (served like a chutney on the side), it may become a little too sweet, but those fears were soon calmed down. The curry was indeed on the sweeter side — as it is meant to be, thanks to the use of coconut milk — but the pineapple pachadi added the requisite touch of piquancy and sourness, lifting the whole dish. With the crisp slices of lotus stem and rice, it became one of those dishes that truly feels like a meal. The asparagus added colour and fibre to the plate, but the dish would have been just as good without it.

The dessert, however, left us with mixed feelings. The Coconut and Lemongrass Panacotta wobbled tantalizingly, like a good pana cotta does, and should ideally have been smooth throughout. With every bite, however, we tasted what felt like desiccated coconut — an experience that rather marred our enjoyment of what was otherwise a lovely dessert.

Meal for two (without drinks): Rs 4,000

Address: Diva Spiced, N-6, First Floor, Greater Kailash – 1

Gordon Ramsay’s new show brings the best of cultures and cuisines

Gordon Ramsay’s new show brings the best of cultures and cuisines

Gordon Ramsay, celebrity chef, Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted, National Geographic, indianexpress.com, indianexpressnews,

Gordon Ramsay, celebrity chef, Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted, National Geographic, indianexpress.com, indianexpressnews,

Food and adventure programming is familiar ground for Gordon Ramsay. (Source: File Photo)

Gordon Ramsay will be diving into oceans, hiking through forests and scaling mountains in his pursuit of culinary inspiration in Peru, Laos, Morocco, Hawaii, Alaska and New Zealand. Food and adventure programming is familiar ground for the British chef as the restaurateur’s 2010 UK series Gordon’s Great Escapes saw the venerable chef explore the food culture of India and Southeast Asia.

National Geographic’s new series Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted, premiering July 29 at 10 pm, will follow Ramsay interacting with indigenous people around the globe to learn about their cultures, dishes and flavours unique to each location.

Every dish he tastes will inspire a new recipe from scratch, created to represent the heart of that culture. Each episode will conclude with Ramsay challenging himself with a local food legend by his side — putting his newfound skills to the test. For Ramsay, food is the gateway to culture, and every adventure is a portal into the soul of the people and place.

“It has been an amazing journey travelling off the beaten path with National Geographic and connecting with locals to learn and share incredible stories of unique traditions, delicacies and the extreme lengths it takes to harvest native ingredients,” said Ramsay. “I have learned way more filming this series than I have in the last 10 years.”

Advertising

The adventures — culinary and otherwise — that Ramsay will undertake in the premiere season include trekking through a dense jungle in Laos to sample weaver ant eggs and diving through dangerous waters on the hunt for snails and giant water bugs; hunting for eels with his bare hands using traditional Maori techniques with a local fisherman by his side in New Zealand; working with local foragers to harvest Maui’s deadliest catch with homemade tools and spearfishing with legendary free diver Kimi Werner in Hawaii; climbing a sheer rock face during a snowstorm with a local forager to harvest native herbs in Alaska; rappelling down a raging waterfall to meet with local mushroom hunters in Morocco and hanging off a cliff in pursuit of cactus worms — a delicacy in Peru.

The series, produced by Studio Ramsay, will also air globally in 172 countries and 43 languages. Additional episodes of the series have already been ordered ahead of the premiere, with production set to resume later this year.

Just Enough Cooks

Just Enough Cooks

Low Bamboo Chicken at Together at 12th

Last year, seven chefs from around the world got together to collaborate on a meal for 300 people. The venue was Hotel de Kaserne in Den Bosch in the Netherlands, and the chefs were all former interns of the pathbreaking, ingredient-forward restaurant Noma, in the Danish capital, Copenhagen. “We are all friends who are now scattered around the world, developing our skills in other restaurants. But our styles are a little bit similar, thanks to having interned at Noma, where we learnt about how much research goes into making food and developed a curiosity about little-known ingredients, or ingredients that are otherwise ignored,” says chef Vanshika Bhatia, who worked in Noma — a two-Michelin-star restaurant considered among the best in the world — in 2013. She now co-owns Together at 12th at Le Meridien, Gurgaon, with bar consultant Nitin Tewari.

Bhatia and Tewari are playing host to the second round of this collaboration — christened Chefs World Tour — at Together at 12th. The seven chefs who are coming together for the event are Bhatia, Julian Fort from District Winery in Washington DC, USA; Rahul Sharma from Masque in Mumbai, India; Tom Brokmeijer from ’t Nonnetje in Harderwijk, the Netherlands; Sahil Sethi from Rooh in Chicago, USA; Marten Verelst from Pollevie in Den Bosch, the Netherlands and Severi Laitane who, after working in restaurants around the world, now works as a wilderness guide in his home country Finland. “We thought that since not everyone can travel to Noma, maybe we can bring some of that experience here. We are not trying to replicate that experience, but we have the same approach to food, which is driven by research and an understanding of local ingredients,” says Bhatia.

Vanshika Bhatia

Each of the chefs will be preparing at least one course of the nine-course menu, which will be served for both lunch and dinner today, and only for dinner tomorrow. In the first edition of Chefs World Tour in Den Bosch last year, the rule was established that the chefs will be preparing a dish inspired by their home country and will use at least one local ingredient. Bhatia, for instance, made a Goan fish preparation using the locally available red mullet, and purple pulao made with purple cabbage. This year, the brief given to the chefs is to prepare a course from their country, but with Indian ingredients. “We’ve already started discussing where we will do this next year,” says Bhatia. Tewari adds, “Usually, chefs visit a hotel or restaurant and do their own food, but here we’re encouraging a collaborative effort.”

Pin It on Pinterest