No doubt that a cheesy pizza, hot steamed dumplings and juicy burgers turn out to be alluring, but somehow I would define comfort food with some humble dal and curries paired with some warm roti and rice.
A place that needs no introduction when it comes to satiating my cravings for a hearty Indian meal is Khaaja Chowk.
After having a fairly good experience at their Plaza mall outlet, I pounced at the opportunity of getting to visit their other outlet in Metropolitan mall, not only to devour some drool-worthy dishes but also to interact with the promoter of this brand, Mr. Vikram Nair.
Not only have they revamped the interiors of the place, adding warmth and vibrancy with simplistic and fuss-free decor, they have also revamped the menu (fortunately keeping some of my favourites from the previous one!), ensuring that no palate goes unsatisfied. If the food was not enough, they also have come commendable concoctions up their sleeves in their bar menu, perfect to get you tripping.
Last weekend was no less than a great learning as well as a great culinary experience at Khaaja Chowk. Starting our conversation with Mr. Vikram, getting to know the reason behind the name of the restaurant and the ideology behind it, I also got to know about the dessert ‘khaaja’, that has it’s origination in Bihar and is a baklava-like dessert, made with wheat flour and sugar syrup.
Our conversations were paired with some delicious food. Devouring chicken 65 and galauti kebabs, I learned about how these dishes got their names. Chicken 65, either gets it’s name from being cooked first in the year 1965 or because of the number of chillies used per Kg of chicken (but who knows?). The gangura paneer tikka and sabudana vada followed and were demolished on sight. Palak patta chaat didn’t meet the cut because of the thick battered spinach leaves and the use of spiced mashed potatoes, making it a little heavy.
After learning about the traditional dum claypot cooking, I was impressed to see that Khaaja Chowk is attempting to bring back some long lost flavours and techniques of cooking, and is surely excelling at it. How can I say that? Well..all you need to do is to try their flaming claypot and experience how flavours can truly evolve and how the meat can become so succulent, that it actually falls off the bone. The laal maas tasted great, but it was the dum ka murg that simply stole the show for me. Tender and juicy chicken doused in a rich and creamy gravy, this is the dish that I would never miss and would recommend each and every chicken lover to try at least once.
No meal can conclude without some delicious desserts, and khaaja chowk has a few must-haves that you shouldn’t miss at any cost. While the crispy and creamy gol matol shahi tukda is perfect to fly away those dessert cravings, the unusual beetroot halwa is the best of what you can get. Warm burgundy halwa layered with vanilla ice cream, though I was skeptical when it came, I ended up finishing it by myself in the end.
I look forward to the other dishes in their menu, which certainly sound very appetising. Needless to say, I would order the dum ka murg and beetroot halwa, each and every time I visit.
To know about my previous experience: