Atul Kochar’s Kerala Style Muttakos Thoran

Today we have something a little different. This is a really flavourful side dish I served with a larger Indian food meal. It went really well with curry and it definitely made for a slightly different than usual accompaniments. You can play around with the cabbages you use for this, if you want!

More with cabbage: Vietnamese Steak and Noodle Salad

Atul Kochar’s Kerala Style Muttakos Thoran

Serves 4 | Prep 15 mins | Cook 15 mins
A little effort | Vegan | Gluten and Dairy Free

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You’ll need:

  • 150g red cabbage, leaves shredded;
  • 150g Savoy cabbage, leaves shredded;
  • 150g white cabbage leaves shredded;
  • 3 large Chinese leaves, shredded;
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced;
  • 2 long thin green chillies, halved;
  • 2 shallots, sliced;
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil;
  • 2 tsp black mustard seeds;
  • 15 fresh or dried curry leaves;
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds;
  • 4 heaped tbsp grated coconut (fresh or frozen), plus extra to garnish.

Melt the coconut oil over a medium-high heat in a wok. Add the mustard seeds and stir until they pop. Add the garlic, green chillies and curry leaves, and stir them around to flavour the oil. Add the cabbages, the shallots, cumin seeds and 1 tsp salt. Stir-fry until the ingredients are mixed together.

Turn the heat to low. Stir in the grated coconut, then cover and leave for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the Chinese leaves are wilted and the cabbages are tender, but still with a little crunch. The cabbages are added added all at once, so they will have different textures, but just keep checking so they don’t over cook.

If you are using frozen grated coconut, leave out a little bit to thaw while you are cooking the cabbage.

When ready to serve, adjust the seasoning with salt, if necessary, and sprinkle with the remaining grated coconut.

I found this recipe in a Foodies Magazine, unfortunately not available online.

My Month in Food – April (Part 1)

As you know I love eating out almost as much I love cooking at home. However, this blog is more about inspiring you to cook at home while also giving you some ideas of where you can eat out in Glasgow. Over the past few months, I felt that My Week of Food posts were almost as frequent as my recipe posts so I took a wee break from them and concentrated on posting more recipes. I wanted to keep blogging about new stuff I try so I’m going to continue posting about new places I try and do a monthly or bi-monthly update (depending on how much new stuff I try). This is the first a new breed of posts and I’ve split into two parts because I managed to try quite a lot of new places in April!

Revolution de Cuba – Brunch – City Centre

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Revolution de Cuba launched their brunch menu back in April and it’s actually a pretty good deal. For £15 you get a brunch dish, a glass of prosecco and a brunch cocktail. Very decent eh? I met some blogger pals to give it a try and we all left pretty satisfied. We didn’t try the cocktails on that occasion but I will definitely be back to give them a shot too. I had the breakfast burrito and a latte. The burrito lacked a bit of spice and was a bit dry but overall wasn’t bad. It’s not the best brunch in town, but it’s pretty decent.

  • Price: £ – most breakfast dishes were around £8, and the brunch deal for £15 is pretty decent!
  • Good for: The food is okay and the atmosphere is nice. It’s a good spot to meet friends.

Smashburger – Dinner – City Centre

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Smashburger opened on Sauchiehall street a few months ago, and it’s one of the newest burger joints in town. It’s a fairly large chain but I hadn’t come across it before. Glasgow is already quite crowded when it comes to good burgers so my excitement was limited about a new chain restaurant opening. However, I wanted to give it a try since I do love a good burger. It’s pretty standard when it comes to the interior – a standard fast food package. As for the food, there is a good variety of burgers to chose from. I went for the Triple Double which comes with two smashed burger patties, triple cheese and the usual suspects (lettuce, tomato, pickles, onion). My friends had the Bacon Cheeseburger and we shared a portion of Smashfries, Sweet potato Smashfires and Fried Pickles. As far as fast food goes – it was alright. As far as burgers in Glasgow go… well I’d say that our little independent joints have a lot more to offer.

  • Price: £ – Burgers are around the £6-8 mark, sides around £3.
  • Good for: Fast food burgers with a good choice of toppings.

Tuk Tuk – Dinner – City Centre

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Tuk Tuk has now been in Glasgow for a wee bit and they also have a longer standing spot in Edinburgh. They offer Indian food served in small dishes so it’s perfect for sharing with friends. In my humble opinion, it’s one of the best places to have quick, no fuss, tasty Indian food in Glasgow. The restaurant on Sauchiehall Street is also well decorated and creates a really nice atmosphere when dining there. Their curries pack a lot of flavours and spice (menu options specify which dishes are for the spice lovers) and really do Indian food right. Also, they serve the best garlic naan you can find in Glasgow (though don’t worry, I will continue test tasting this for you…).  The Railways Station Lamb is one of my favourite dishes there, along with the Lamb Lasooni, but almost everything I’ve tried in there has been excellent. Do pay them a visit on Sauchiehall street when you have a chance.

  • Price: ££ – small dishes are priced around £6, and you will need a few to share.
  • Good for: Indian food, sharing plates, small dishes.

I hope you will enjoy visiting some of these places. If you do, let me know what you thought in the comments below! You can now read Part 2 here.

~Em

 

My week of food Double bill #10 & #11 – 26 Mar – 8 Apr

It’s been a busy period for me over the past few weeks – holidays, work, travel. So I thought that this time around I will do a double bill and combine my eatings out in one article, since actually I haven’t really been eating out too much. We only have four entries during the past two weeks and they were all good, dare I say! Starting with trying Six By Nico’s New York menu and having a pre-Easter dinner at Nam Tuk Tram Stop last week and visiting one of my favourite West End cafes, Kaf for a Monday brunch (gotta love a long weekend) and having a fabulous meal with some brilliant ladies at Rishi’s on Friday in week #2.

Dinner at Six by Nico – New York Menu (Finnieston)

I have written about Six by Nico twice already (full review and in a previous My Week Of Food Post) and I will probably never stop raving about this fantastic restaurant. Managed to catch this menu in its final days and I’m really quite glad that we did. It’s not the best ever that’s come out of the Six by Nico kitchen (Illusion is still my favourite) it was still amazing. That’s the thing about Six by Nico – any menu that you catch will offer outstanding food which has imagination and fantastic flavours. It really never disappoints. This menu was inspired by New York (as the name suggests) and each dish played tribute to this colourful city. From the delicious mini salmon bagels we started with to the Big Apple dessert which definitely stole the show. A cheesecake shaped in a red apple? Just one of the interesting things you can find in Six By Nico. The food was fantastic as usual and I pretty much can’t fault them for anything – flavour, presentation, imagination, service and value. It’s all there!

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Eggs Benedict from New York menu at Six by Nico
  • ££: £25 per person for a six course menu without drinks. Very good value for money!
  • Good for an occasion or when you want to get the fine dining experience for a better price.

 

Dinner at Nam Tuk Tram Stop (West End)

This is one of the newer additions to the West End food scene. Over the past couple of years there has been a lot of change in this location on Dumbarton Road but Nam Tuk Tram Stop seems to have bedded in well. The restaurant offers Pan Asian food so you can expect to find Chinese, Korean, Japanese and other Asian dishes. A four of us visited on Saturday before Easter and we managed to try a few different dishes. The friends we visited with all quite liked the food, but I am not as sure as them about it. It was okay and it will be fine if you like Pan Asian food. I found it a bit too salty and didn’t like all the flavours on offer, but it wasn’t bad. For me the décor was the highlight of the visit as I really enjoyed the ambience of the restaurant! I should mention that the staff were also fantastic and actually went above and beyond during our visit.

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Inside Nam Tuk Tram Stop
  • ££: Around £20 per person. We had a variety of dishes so we mixed and matched. Good value for money.
  • Good for: One for the Asian food lovers!

Brunch at Kaf (Partick)

I’ve already written about Kaf in a previous post and nothing much has changed since the last time I visited – it’s still the lovely little charming spot in the West End. It’s always a treat paying Kaf a visit and I can always be certain that I will get a decent cup of coffee and some delicious food. If you haven’t yet been, you should absolutely visit this little gem of a café in Partick!

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Eggs Benny, Babka French Toast and the Rueben at Kaf.
  • ££: About £8 for a breakfast dish. Good value for money and great portion size!
  • Great for: brunch and coffee.

Dinner at Rishi’s Indian Aroma (City Centre)

If 5ft Dosa is your thing then Rishi’s is the right place for you. Rishi’s is one of the best South Indian restaurants Glasgow has to offer (in my humble opinion). This is my second visit to the restaurant and their dishes were really without fault. Since it was five of us, we decided to go for it and order the Family (5ft) Dosa on offer which basically took over the whole table. We also shared a number of curries and sides for a delicious Indian meal. Perhaps the only thing I’m not a fan of at Rishi’s is the service – not very friendly or polite. However the delicious food made up for it so based on that I’d say it’s definitely one to visit when you are in the city centre.

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Family dosa and curries at Rishi’s
  • ££: Bill came to around £15 per person, and considering how much food we had that was great value!
  • Great for: South Indian food – definitely order a dosa when you are there!

So here it is – you have two weeks worth of food to read about. Slightly shorter post today but I felt like keeping it that way after the marathon writing I had to do for my much much longer post of a Menu for 10 people!

~Em

My week in food #7 (05-11 March)

Last week had some pretty spectacular dining out that I’ve just been dying to share with you. We had some very different dining experiences – from a fancier meal at one of the best steak houses in Glasgow, in my humble opinion, Porter & Rye – to casual dinners at Malaysian restaurant Satu Satu and Indian tapas & craft beer pub Crossing the Rubicon, and managed to sneak in a brunch at the Trans Europe Cafe. Today’s post will probably make you hungry, but, it should also give you some great ideas for eating out in Glasgow – some of these restaurants were truly exceptional (looking at you Porter & Rye and Satu Satu!)

Tuesday – Dinner at Porter & Rye (Finnieston)

What a good way to start both my week and today’s blog post. Porter & Rye is a wee restaurant situated on the Argyle street strip in Finnieston. They specialise in meat, and more specifically steak. And the steak they serve is good! There are small touches in the service and atmosphere which I really like. For example, as you walk in you can see a fridge full of various beef cuts being dry-aged. After you order your steak, the staff come by with a board with a number of sharp looking steak knifes and you are asked to pick one to have your steak with – all, of course, based on your personal preference. The restaurant is more on the pricey side but it’s definitely worth it!

 

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Chateaubriand at Porter & Rye

 

In terms of food, we had a starter each (the staff assured us that they are really light so won’t interfere with us having a lot of steak), a Chateaubriand to share, two sides and two steak sauces. For a starter I had the Pheasant Rillette which was indeed very light and tasty, while my other half had the slow-cooked Ox Broth, which was definitely not light but it was incredibly delicious. Our steak was served rare (we usually order blue but were advised that rare is better for this cut) and it was sublime. The meat just melts in your mouth, it was beautifully seasoned and it was so delicious, it did not need the accompanying red wine jus or salsa verde. Our sides were good too, but the steak was really the highlight of our visit to Porter & Rye. There are a couple of other options on the menu that are not steak, but if you are visiting the restaurant than I wholeheartedly recommend you go for the steak. It’s worth it.

  • Price: Around £40-50 pp incl starter and main with sides and sauces and a drink each.
  • Perfect for a treat or an occasion. One for the steak lovers!

Friday – Dinner at Satu Satu (Charring Cross)

It’s always a good sign when a Malaysian friend recommends you a Malaysian restaurant. It’s even a better sign to see the restaurant full of Asian diners every time you pass by. That’s the case with Satu Satu, which I have been wanting to try for a long time now. Finally, I made it over last Friday and oh my – was it good! The restaurant is not big, it’s modest in interior (the centrepiece of which is a lovely mural painted on one of the walls) and the kitchen is open, next to the dining tables, so you are hit by the delicious smell of food being cooked.

 

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Laksa at Satu Satu

 

And the food… it’s the best Malaysian I’ve had outside of Malaysia. My friend and I both started with the Won Ton Soup, which was delicious. For main I had the Roti Canai which was a favourite of mine when I went to Malaysia last year and my friend had the Laksa which packed just enough heat to warm up a cold Glasgow evening. Everything about the place, the atmosphere, the aromas and the food took me right back to my trip to Malaysia. I can’t recommend Satu Satu strongly enough.

  • Price: £17pp – two courses + soft drinks each;
  • Great for casual dining and if you want to try Malaysian food. One for the spice lovers.

Saturday – Brunch at Trans Europe Cafe (East End/Merchant City)

I know that Trans Europe Cafe has been part of Glasgow’s food scene for a while, but I’ve never been in it. It’s a charming little cafe in Merchant City. I loved the fact that the cafe kept to a theme in both its name and decor. With tables and seats as in a retro train, and music flowing which reminded me of an old style French bistro, it was almost like I wasn’t in Glasgow. The food options are fairly standard – think Scottish breakfast, poached eggs, omelettes and so on. Both my friend and I had an omelette which was very large and fluffy, and very delicious. I wasn’t a big fan of the coffee but they also have a good selection of teas too. It’s one to try when in Merchant City.

 

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Omelette at Trans Europe Cafe

 

  • Price: £13pp – including breakfast, and a couple of hot drinks.
  • Great for casual breakfast, lunch and everything in between.

Sunday – Dinner at Crossing the Rubicon (West End)

I’ll start by causing some controversy… Practically, almost every food blogger in Glasgow raved about the place when it first opened. I tried it in its first months and I really didn’t like it. It offered Indian tapas and craft beer so it sounded great on paper. But the food really wasn’t great, and considering Glasgow is thriving with fantastic Indian food… it wasn’t worth it. However, I visited again last Sunday and was really pleased to see a change for the better. They have changed their menu while still offering Indian food – both small and large dishes. They are also offering some interesting fusion dishes like the Rubicon Frankie, Chaana Chat Taco and more. We went with a couple of friends, one of which is Coeliac so is completely Gluten Free. The staff weren’t very knowledgeable about their GF offering so it took some time to narrow down what was safe to eat. Anyway, it’s worth saying that the menu now looks a lot more interesting now and the food has definitely improved. They host a number of events during the week, instead of a brilliant quiz night, open mic nights and more. Definitely worth a visit when in the West End.

 

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Butter Chicken with Roti at Crossing the Rubicon

 

  • Dishes range from £2 (small dishes) to £7.50 (bigger dishes), well priced.
  • Good for casual dining and great for craft beer lovers.

This is it for this week! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this and let me know in the comments if you have been to any of those restaurants or if you are planning to go!

~Em.

Carrot & Ginger Bhajis and Spiced Paneer with Dhal

Over the weekend I had two very good friends over for food and boardgames. Inspired by Glasgow’s current trend for Indian food served in “small plates”, I decided to create a similar experience at home. So I went about to preparing a menu where I wanted to feature authentic and tasty Indian food. The challenge was even bigger as one of my friends is, in fact, Indian and also has been vegetarian all of her life (until recently, anyway). So, here I was, cooking vegetarian Indian food for a semi-vegetarian Indian woman… How could that go wrong?!

Here is what our menu looked like: Squash curry; spiced paneer with dhal; carrot & ginger bhajis; M’s special Indian fried rice; and naan bread (sadly not homemade). I’m pleased to say that everything was delicious and I got the seal of approval for my Indian menu by everyone. Today, I’m uploading two of the recipes which really stood out: the spiced paneer with dhal and the carrot and ginger bhajis. The curry was also delicious, but I felt I had eaten better vegetarian curries which I would prefer to upload.

The bhajis, dhal and paneer would make a perfect accompaniment to any Indian menu, either as a side dish or a starter. I used the two recipes below for my menu which served 4 people comfortably, as part of a larger menu.

 

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Bhajis and yogurt dip, bottom left; dhal and paneer, bottom right.

 

Spiced Paneer with Lentil Dhal

Serves: 2 as a main, 4 as a side/starter; Time: 30 minutes | Easy | Vegetarian, Gluten Free

Ingredients:

  • 75g lentils (I used red, the original recipe called for green);
  • 500 ml vegetable stock;
  • 1 small onion, grated;
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped;
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric, plus a pinch extra for the paneer;
  • 1 tsp garam masala, plus a bit extra for the paneer;
  • a small bunch coriander, chopped;
  • 230-50g paneer, cut into wedges or cubes;
  • groundnut or sunflower oil;

Method:

1. Make the dhal: Put the first 7 ingredients in a pan and bring to a simmer, then cover and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the lentils are tender. Drain any excess liquid, then stir in most of the coriander.

2. For the paneer: Toss the paneer with a little oil, seasoning and a little turmeric and garam masala. Fry in a non-stick pan until golden, turning frequently so it doesn’t burn. Spoon the lentils into a serving dish and top with the paneer. Serve with naan bread if eating as a main.

Recipe from olive magazine issue February 2016.

Carrot and Ginger Bhajis with coriander dip

This recipe uses gram flour, which is made of chickpeas. It is usually available in larger supermarkets in the ‘world’ aisle, or from specialist middle-eastern shops. If you prefer, you can use plain flour instead.

Note that it’s very important that you don’t add the carrots until the very last moment as they will make the batter too wet.

Makes: 12 bhajis | Time: 20 minutes | Easy | Vegetarian

Ingredients

  • 2 medium eggs;
  • 50g piece of fresh ginger, grated;
  • 100g gram flour (see note above);
  • 1/2 large red chilli, finely chopped;
  • 1 tsp garam masala;
  • 1 tsp turmeric;
  • 1 tsp ground ginger;
  • 1 lime, juiced;
  • 1 tsp nigella seeds (kalonji);
  • 1 tsp sea salt flakes;
  • sunflower oil for deep frying;
  • 300g carrots, grated.

For the dip:

  • 150g yogurt;
  • 2 limes, juiced;
  • bunch fresh coriander, chopped.

Method

1. Mix all the bhaji ingredients apart from the oil and the carrots to form a thick batter. Heat a pan with a 2cm layer of oil over a medium-high heat until it starts to shimmer. Mix the carrots in the batter until well combined, then press the mix in your hands to form 12 balls.

2. Lower the balls into the hot oil with a spoon and press down lightly with the back of the spoon into a patty. Fry in batches for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon onto kitchen towel to drain off excess oil.

3. Meanwhile, mix the dip ingredients and season. Serve with the bhajis.

Recipe from Delicious magazine, issue January 2014.