Sunday, 19 February 2012

San’s Sizzlers


I visited San’s Sizzlers, a favourite of my family, after almost 4 years. My sister had been visiting India and we had to go to her favourite places. Though I do not like sizzlers much, I didn’t regret later having had them at San’s.


The warmth of the green and beige interiors greet you when you enter the joint. Small wooden tables and chairs are set up cosily inside. We were lucky to have got a place because we reached early. Even though it was a weekday, the place filled up quickly with chirpy NRIs soon.


We order for a Stir Fry Vegetable Sizzler and Chicken Sizzler and some mocktails to go along. I look at the stained glass ceiling while waiting for the order to arrive. The interiors are the same as they were before; no changes have been made. You might even find some furnishings being worn out.


We do not have to wait much and our order arrives soon. All 4 of us attack the 2 dishes almost together. I, obviously, go in for the chicken one and get lost in eating. The spices are just right and vegetables are lesser. We finish the chicken and crave for a little more but we move on to dessert, which invariable has to be Sizzling Brownie with Chocolate Sauce. Despite being a non-bakery or coffe joint, San’s Sizzlers boasts of this excellent dish. It can very well compete with brownie of any popular coffee joint chain. Surprisingly, Sizzling Browinie is all that is available for dessert here. Guess, they have made it clear that this is what their speciality is. Apart from sizzlers, of course.

3        1

The food was light and the chocolate was divine. The ambience was sunny and crowd was good. The owner is friendly and warm and the company was enjoyable. What else can a normal human being ask for?

San’s Sizzlers is a place I would like to hit periodically – say, once in 3 months. Move aside, Yoko, San’s Sizzlers is here to stay.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Momo Station - Review

DSC00908Momo Station is perhaps one of the best things that happened to me in Surat. In terms of food, that is. This colourful joint, located on the third floor of Iscon Mall, is a quiet little place and is usually empty and peaceful and hence, I like it there. Another big plus point is that non vegetarian food is available here.

They have a small menu of 3 vegetarian and 3 non vegetarian momos, some soups, some side items and soft drinks. I ignore the rest and focus only on momos. 
I don’t know when I got to love momos. My first memory of momos is having them sitting down on the grass on one of the slopes in Himachal Pradesh during a school trip (some time in 1999). This was introduced to me by one of our teachers who were an Assamese. She went drooling over the spicy momos, made by a hawker, that were gleaming in the winter sun. I had looked curiously at the mushy, off white coloured dumplings. 
When I came across Momo station on one of the many visits to the mall, I squealed with delight. And hence after, I have been a regular customer there. Momo Station has never failed to delight me. I order any of the 3 momo styles offered – Spicy Chicken Momo / Masala Momo / (don’t remember the 3rd one) (either fried or steamed) and prefer having the whole basket (6 momos) to myself. A soft drink goes well with it. 
I and a dear friend, who had never been to MS before, went there some weeks back and she ordered for Thupka (spicy, tangy noodle soup) and I fell in love with it. 
I have tried a vegetarian momo once, which has minced cabbage, cauliflower, etc filling and didn’t quite like it. It had no charm.
Whenever I am undecided about where I should go for food, Momo Station is usually the place I end up going to. Since it is usually scantily crowded, I can sit there peacefully, with no urgency to empty the table for waiting customers. A single basket of momos costs Rs. 65 – Rs. 80, which means a wholesome, healthy, delicious meal in less than Rs. 100! 
Try Momo station if you are looking for something different and unusual than your daily diet and want to tease your spicy taste buds a bit!

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Good Ol’ Eggs & Bread

Skipping dinner at the common room today was just an excuse to use up the few days old multi-grain bread lying in the fridge. I have been avoiding my dearest eggs for a few weeks because of my skin allergy but my fetish for eggs took the better of me and I decided to have them anyway. Decided to try out something other than the usual bread and egg fry, which is my all time favourite Sunday breakfast.
Gee. I even feel embarrassed telling what ‘new item’ I tried. French toast! (For all those who don’t know, I can’t cook. But I love eating and have a strong sense of tastes, love trying out new stuff and visualize myself being a master chef is my own grand kitchen some day!).
I recollect having French toast at home during my childhood. Mom has been making sweet and savoury French toasts. Yummy! (Mommy, I miss your cooking 17473). I looked up microwave French toast recipes. Found good ones here:
Surprised. French toast is supposed to be bland? I mean, savoury is out of question. Its either bland with cinnamon flavour or sweet. What about Mom’s fantastic savoury French toast with coriander topping? Mom, your French toast still rocks.
Anyway, decided to try out something on my own. While listening to Bombay Funk on, IDSC00854 beat 2 tiny eggs and little milk (maybe just a tablespoon). Spread 3 slices of bread in a microwavable plate and poured the beaten eggs all over them. Sprinkled pepper powder, chilli flakes (Courtesy: Domino’s Pizza) and good old oregano. Microwaved it for a few minutes and voila! My French toast was ready! Ahem, I didn’t put salt and didn’t turn the bread over while microwaving, but still. Had a good time having it with Sweet-Chilli sauce!
DSC00859How can eggs and bread be complete without coffee, my favourite? Ah. Coffee was needed for my aching legs (am I becoming older at a higher speed all of a sudden? I have aching legs since 3-4 days. I am not 30 yet. Not even married yet). Made my favourite cinnamon coffee (some coffee from Singapore) and relaxed on my bed by the window. 
Now, that’s a perfect way to wind up a hectic day!

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Surat Central Food Court–Mela

I have been shopping a lot lately. I know, I know, I am a shopaholic and can’t help but shop, but this lot fas for my sister. Anyway, I happened to get a Rs. 50 off coupon of the newly opened food court on the top floor of Surat Central. I just need an opportunity to eat out (especially if the joint is located in a mall!) and decided to use the coupon. 

I food court, named Mela, has started barely 20 days ago. Maybe thats why they are handing out the coupons – so that people know about it. 

IMG00015-20110706-2059Mela, written in Gujarati 

There was just another family present when we reached there. They have taken up a huge space for this – with some 100 colourful tables to accommodate the several hungry, enthusiastic Suratis, I suppose. I loved the colourful, village school type furniture and the walls. 

IMG00007-20110706-2027I know. Bad photo quality. Taken from 2 mp camera on my Blackberry 

The colourful furniture

My favourite piece of furniture!

There are 5 restaurants functional right now – Journey to Jalandhar, the Punjabi cuisine restaurant. Misumisu, the Chinese place. Sanskar, the Gujarati place (I love it already), Cheerz with Cheese, the fast food place, Vadilal Happinezz, ice creams and Cafe Bollywood, the Indian fast food. So, I can sum up that the variety is good. There is a lot to choose from, depending on your mood and appetite. 

The prices are reasonable. We took a Chilly Corn and Cheese sandwich from Cheerz and Cheeze and it costed us Rs. 50. Since we had to spend Rs. 150 to use the coupon, we went in for noodles and a gravy dish at Misumisu. I must say that they are not fully functional and all the counters may not have all the items on the menu available. I am sure they will start everything once th crowd starts pouring in, which would be soon, I am sure, since Suratis get attracted towards food like butterflies come pulled towards flowers. 

The various wall designs 


The glass work on pillars. We give the Gujarati artwork everywhere. A proud Gujarati! 

I ambience was lovely – huge space, colourful furniture and cool writings on the walls. They have tried to make it look like a sort of a village place. The ceiling is beautiful, with bandhini drapings and lanterns. Sad, couldn’t click those. 

I wonder what will happen once the place gets packed with Suratis possessing mammoth diets. 

Since the place is very close to my place and isn’t very expensive, I don’t mind coming here once in a week, to get a change from the routine roti-sabzi. Moreover, Happinezz menu showed some 50 sundaes. Need to try all of them one by one!

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Restaurant Review–Village, Surat

I will never get bored of Village. Maybe because it is such a fun place. Maybe because the food is so yummy there. Village gives you a experience you won't be disappointed with. Its interiors made up to look like an actual village, the staff dressed up like cute, local village folks and the music and dhol to go in the background. A fantastic way to experience the true, traditional Gujarat.

You are greeted by the jovial staff at the entrance, who will politely ask you for Rs. 250 per person (the entrance charge is fixed and you get to eat unlimited food inside!). A second staff member is collect your coupons and put blue ink stamp on your hand as a token. A lady staff, dressed in ghaghra welcomes you with the thali and tilak (the Indian way!). A dash of colour and music hits you as soon as you enter. A ‘banyan tree’ stands right in the middle, with a bangle seller, a mehendi designer and a jyotish (palm reader) with a fancy laptop sits below it. The banyan tree is decorated with colourful and glittery crepe paper. When there is reasonable crowd, the staff comes up with a dhol and garba (the traditional dance of Gujarat) music. The music is irresistible for garba lovers and the several customers join the staff members to dance around the banyan tree. Heaven knows that we just need an excuse to do garba!

You are made to sit on low cane chairs at wooden tables and served water in brass tumblers. Colourful posters of actors and film posters adorn the walls.

Several food stalls are lined along several portions of the walls. Stalls offering a wide range of delicious food items make your willpower go weak and you give in to the magnetic pull of Gujarati delicacies. Chats, Sweets, Sugarcane juice, Chana, Southindian dishes, Chinese (Yes, Chinese too), Pav Bhaji – all invite you to their stalls. You may choose to try a little bit of everything because it is hard to say no to ANYTHING. You are required to go to the stalls, order to the cooks and pick up your food but the staff is more than willing to help. And, oh yes, masala chai wala and chaas wala will also come round to your table on their cycles!

The main course consists of Gujarati and Rajasthani dishes. The vegetables keep changing but the Kheechu, Kadhi, Dal-bati and khichdi are the standard items because they are staple gujarati dishes each meal is incomplete without. These dishes can be had with different types of rotis – Tandoori, Naan, Chhapati or Bhakri – my favourite. The cherry on the cake is always bhakri with ghee-gud (jaggery). Wind up the meal with yummy cool falooda or hot, melt-in-mouth jalebis or the irresistible gulabjamuns. Or, the favourite Indian drink – Masala Chai (Spicy tea) and you conclude only one thought – Heaven must be serving food like this.

Village is economical and fun. Go here for the whole experience, not just the food. The place can get noisy, with the dhol and music and the excited, hungry customers. Best for big groups, parties and gatherings and good for people with voluminous diets!