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Suresh Hinduja

Durga Pooja festival in Bangalore

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[quote name='Suresh Hinduja' timestamp='1350641642' post='25024']
It's that time of the year again.[img]http://www.gourmetindia.com//public/style_emoticons/default/rolleyes.gif[/img]
[/quote]

Inspired by Suresh's pictures taken last year , this year I did a survey of sort of on the bengali food available during durga puja in the pandals in Bangalore.

As usual there were stalls selling the usual stuff - luchi kasha mangsho , bhapa ilish , kolkata biriyani , roll, cutlet et all. Interestingly there were some stalls selling Aloo Posto, Mochar Ghonto, Potoler Dorma, Papad Bhja . One stall sold Chaltar Achar , Khejurer Achar.The prices were as high as the real estate in the city. Nevertheless the expat bongs remained unnerved and committed themselves to the food fiesta. This made me think....

I remember during younger days , aloo posto, mochar ghonto etc were simple cheap homely food which you would not get in restaurants. The grandmom used to make achars on the rooftop and we had it during summers. What was available in abundance has now become a rare commodity and comes with a price few can afford. Its not that the ingredients have become expensive but its because the home cooking has undergone a sea change especially for the lifestyle you lead in the cities. Bengali restaurants are doing a roaring business in Bangalore serving a tiny sliver of Bhapa Ilish or a piece of Kolkata Chaanp at an exhorbitant rate or for that matter a small bowl of Masoor Daal with Aloo Bhaja.

Are we losing something slowly....?
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I think this trend in happening across all Ethnic Cuisines of India. I never knew of any fine dining Bengali Restaurant at Kolkata 20 years back. But now there are dozens of such restaurants and doing a rocking business. Similar things are happening for Coorgi, Kerala, Mangalorean and even Naga Cuisine.
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[i]"Mocha" is something that has practically disappeared from home kitchens these days. Young housewives these days don't want to labour so much in picking the florets and hate to have the blackish mark on the hands. Now I eat my "mocha" preparations at Bengali restaurants. The stalls in the markets of Chittaranjan park in Delhi sell "mochar chop"[/i]
[i]As Raunak bhai has pointed out restaurants/eateries serving regional cusines have mushroomed in every city. The other day I found a Bengali restaurant very close to where I live and at a Puja pandal next to my house I saw the advertisement of a new Bengali restaurant Bong Connection which is scheduled to open soon.[/i]
[i]I also find that Naga cuisine is being lapped up by the Naga expats as well as north Indian gourmands. It started with the restaurants in Dilli Haat but now such restaurants are coming up elsewhere too.[/i]
[i]The new Goa Niwas in Chanakyapuri has a very good restaurant now. I think it is the only place in Delhi that serves "Bombil" Rava fry.[/i]
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This may not be good that such traditional dishes are not cooked at home anymore. But, the restaurants serving these dishes, even if at a high cost may not be an entirely bad thing.

I posted elsewhere while discussing such trend in Hyderabad/AP:

[quote name='Sekhar' timestamp='1335085117' post='23516']
.....A lot of these kind of stores have opened in Hyderabad in the past several years , there they are called 'Swagruha foods' (roughly - own or your own home food), I think I have posted about this on GI somewhere.

It is a great thing that through these stores we will continue to taste traditional foods and not get completely lost in Pizzas and KFCs. ......
[/quote]

After moving to the US, we have for most part retained our traditional recipes via my mom and my mother in law, but I am not sure my kids will continue to do the same when they have their own families and maybe even move back to India. Unless of course they develop a interest in cooking. They do have great interest in eating these traditional recipes at the moment. Gives me hope. :)
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[quote name='jyotirmoy' timestamp='1354704282' post='25322'] [i] It started with the restaurants in Dilli Haat but now such restaurants are coming up elsewhere too.[/i]
[i]The new Goa Niwas in Chanakyapuri has a very good restaurant now. I think it is the only place in Delhi that serves "Bombil" Rava fry.[/i]
[/quote]

So true jyoti da ! Dilli Haat gave delhi-ites the flavor of cuisines of the rest of the country on a daily basis. I know many a local who were tempted to travel based of a few meals at Dilli Haat. Not all states do a good job at Dilli Haat, but it is convenient to sample at close proximity, rather than hunt the canteen of State Houses in Delhi.

I think the best Goan restaurant in NCR is in Gurgaon, a hole-in-the-wall small eatery in DLF-IV in the Needs market across from Regency.
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What is the name of this Goan restaurant? Is it the same mom & dad place that used to operate from C.R. Park in Delhi?

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[quote name='jyotirmoy' timestamp='1354944805' post='25335']
What is the name of this Goan restaurant? Is it the same mom & dad place that used to operate from C.R. Park in Delhi?
[/quote]

Could be. Gautam would know. Unfortunately no alcohol on site - they have totally 3-4 tables.

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