Posts Tagged ‘Momo’

Ode to Serendipity

May 15, 2016 Leave a comment

A wan sun meekly faded into an ashen sky leaving the restless sea heaving, licking the shore in frothy waves. The water pressed against my abdomen and squeezed the ribs, making breathing difficult. The tide was high; it ebbed and flowed over my shoulders and pulled away the sand under my feet. Thoughts drifted far and away, beyond the horizon in which tiny lights of rigs flickered along a dull grey line severing the sea from the sky. The undulating expanse, terrifyingly in its immensity, was somehow reassuring in its embrace. A sense of serenity washed over me blanketing disquieting thoughts of mortal evanescence in the course of time.

We stood on the shore on a carpet of seashells feeling the heavy rhythm of the sea as its spells of silence mingled with the flutter of warm breeze and desultory conversation. One by one the parked cars departed, head beams wavering over the dunes, and an inky black solitude spread around us. We were quiet, succumbing to the repose that enveloped us, not daring to corrupt it with our voices. And so we stood for a long, long time…

Later, as we inched through the snaking traffic of Ajman, along yellow lit streets lined with neon signs of dance bars and a milling crowd, the soothing spell of the sea still buoyed our spirits.

The Beach

Chance, blind chance, brought us to this garish Nepalese restaurant with a gaudy pink wall paper pattern, green carpeted staircase, bright fluorescent lights, cordial smiles and Momos on the menu – a bit shabby, but certainly spirited. Nubile Nepali girls gyrated on the LCD screen to tunes with a folkish touch, in an incongruent overlap of modernity over antiquity. Nepalese patrons of all ages and gender came and went, some were curious to see the lot of us, their glances told as much – not the usual clientele.

There were several unheard of dishes in the menu which piqued our interest. The familiar Momos unleashed a wave of nostalgia of days long gone – particularly of Calcutta where I had first encountered them and of Gurgaon where I chanced to have excellent Momos in a small counter outside Big Bazaar.

The Menu

The Momos were dry and not succulent or spicy enough for our taste. The Sandeko on the contrary set fire to our palettes and oozed though our eyes and nose. Bhatmas Sandeko was crispy and captivating with a touch of garlic – a novel experience. The soft succulence of Alu went so well with the mildly tangy flavour of chopped onions in Alu Sandeko. Mutton Sekuwa, dark, dry and bitingly salty lent a gritty, rustic flavour when chewed with Tawa Roti. We were happy to be here, and our conversation grew animated and a little boisterous. Visit to the restaurant was a wonderful finale to the pleasant and peaceful evening we had spent at the beach.

Chance had favoured us this evening, weaving a tapestry in bright flavours and cosy peace, moments that hopefully would not be lost in the cascade of fragmented experience…..

The beach near Hamriyah town is 30 min drive from Sharjah on the Ras Al Khaima road via Jurf.

Kathmandu Darbar Restaurant
Next to Choitrams in Ajman (some what near Lulu and KM Trading)
Tel: 06-7424330/ 06-7439811
Expenses for 4 people – AED 72 after having one plate of :
Alu Sandeko, Bhatmas Sandeko, Kothey Momo (Veg), Chilly Momo (Veg) , Mutton Sekuwa, Plain Lassi, Lemon Juice.
Definitely value for money.
Positives: Tasty food, Cordial Staff
Negatives: The table was no so clean, but then we were looking for a Thattukada experience and it was a perfect fit!!!
There were several other intriguing items in the menu we could not explore:
Masu Chiura, Choila, Mutton Bhuteko et al….
Some other time, Inshallah…

Speaking of Momos: We had encountered a bigger and bolder cousin of Momo in Georgia – Khinkali , the juicy, slurpy Georgian national dish.. A dumpling worth dying for…
The steak and kidney pie that I came across in Lancaster had some similarity to dumpling, but is an altogether different beast….

Categories: Totternama

Instant Gratification – Guaranteed!!

December 19, 2009 Leave a comment

Consider this hypothetical scenario:

You have been working all morning. You have forgotten to bring lunch. It is 1.00 PM. You are on planet Earth. You are in the Republic of India. You are in Gurgaon. You office is in DLF Cybercity. And there is this sudden irrepressible craving for biryani welling up from your abdominal abyss.

You bring up Google maps, type Hyderabadi Biryani and click locate. This is what you got.

Did you say ‘voila’? Probably, not. You realize, with a jolt, that Google cannot provide you all the answers. QED.

How will you cope up with this existential dilemma? What will you do next?
Here is what you can do. Grab you wallet and walk over to Dhakshini in DLF Cybergreen food court. And what would you find there? An ocean of bowed heads wolfing Hyderabadi Biryani, yes you heard it right, ecstasy and deep spiritual contentment etched vividly over their faces. So you walk over to the counter, pay a hundred bucks, collect the steel thali with its round plantain leaf and a large bowl of biryani with an aromatic chicken leg delicately poised on top, a half moon of an egg beside it and two small bowls – chicken curry and raita on the side, make way through the human wall and pounce on an empty chair. The universe awaits in hushed silence as you transfer biryani to the plate and with infinite delicacy, scoops a large spoonful into your salivating mouth. 3 seconds elapse. Big Bang! Birth of cosmos, an explosive decompression of space, time and gravitation sends you reeling across the floor. You recover and the same eternal bliss you noticed on others, permeate you. As you fork the last grain of rice off the plate, you thank providence for granting life next door to this biryani paradise.

Let me assure you, I’m not kidding. But again, it was just a hypothetical scenario and you know where they eventually lead to – gastronomic hyperboles!!!

Had enough of hypothetical scenarios? I am dying to give you another… Maybe another time…

But I cannot leave you without a mention of the ultimate momo experience in Gurgaon. This one is ‘Cheap and Best’. And you would go back for more, I assure you. I have been doing it for the past five years… Check out chicken and veg momos at ‘Cj’s MOMO’ outside Big Bazaar food court at Sahara Mall. It is a momo benchmark. The dark red chilly dip sends tear drops splattering to the floor and your hand-to-mouth co-ordination falters as each momo sets your head spinning… More like a hallucinatory experience… Go for it…

(A Unit of Andhra Bhavan)
KF-10 & 11, 1st Floor,
Foodcourt, Tower-C,
DLF Cybergreen,
R-Block, DLF City,
Gurgaon – 122002
Tel: 0124-3224441
For Delivery Call: 9311953179
Dhakshini also serves other exotic dishes such as Chicken Dosa, Keema Dosa and Egg Dosa.


Big Bazaar, 2nd Floor,
Sahara Mall,
Mehrauli-Gurgaon Road, Gurgaon
Tel: 9811301499/ 9810869608 – Call only after 12.00 Noon


Categories: Gastronomique

Serendipitious delights

October 27, 2009 3 comments

Sometimes the best things in life are discovered entirely by chance. Like yesterday night when we came across this tiny shack near the rear exit of Anzal Plaza in Sector-22, Gurgaon. All of us were in a mood for a quick bite and that was probably why “Vada Pav” caught my eye so quickly. “Vada Pav“, a native of Maharashtra is a rare sight in Gurgaon. So, it was pure ecstasy to find it tucked away in this remote corner of the universe.

We were delirious with anticipation as we approached and immediately spotted the Vada‘s from far away. We rubbed our eyes and pinched each other to make sure this was no mirage. The Vada’s were definitely there for the taking, but Pav, nope, Pav was exhausted. We were heart broken but decided to try the Vada anyway. Soon, steel plates with Vada’s swimming in coconut chutney and red chilly paste were passed around. My god, amazing Vada‘s, authentic Mumbai flavour mouth watering Vada. We nearly exhausted the restaurant’s Vada inventory. My friend in the meantime couldn’t resist a chicken soup which he later claimed to have tasted a bit like Sambar! There were many more alluring items on the menu like chicken lolly pops, varieties of soups and momos. The food was warm and hygienic. The setting was informal; sweet chill of incipient winter was in the air, and steaming Vada‘s melted in our mouth.

The owner was thin, dark and pleasant faced. He was a Shetty from Mangalore. He asked if we were Malayalee’s and as we nodded in a semi trance induced by Vada, he told his story. He had come to Gurgaon, 11 years ago and had never returned to his native town. He could understand Malayalam, but could hardly speak the language, though he had many friends from Kerala. The shack primarily catered to students from nearby colleges and he was doing brisk business. We could see that. Even at this late hour there were a group of students chatting away at a corner over tea and momos. He had plans to expand the set up to cope up with the demand. He was particularly attentive to us. Compared to his, our lives were easy. Yet, he was optimistic and cheerful at the end of the day. Probably he has to wake up at 4 AM and start over.

Our nocturnal adventure was coming to an end. This was another instance of chance triumphing over well laid plans, reinforcing my belief in serendipity. I vowed to be more open to chance and its unexpected delights as we drove away.

Where to find Ashva’s Fast Food

It’s on the lane next to Anzal’s Plaza in Sector – 22, Gurgaon. Shetty can be reached at 9718559669.

Categories: Gastronomique