Taking comfort in creamy rice
There is something about comfort food that make you want to send your diet into the dustbin. While some might want to grab that bar of dark chocolate [okay, confession, I want to do that all the time], others take refuge in takeaway pizza or some such. But nothing does it for me more than some creamy rice. In Italian, they call it risotto.
Every Italian and wannabe Continental place in Delhi does risottos these days [even some takeaways who have named themselves after the country]. While some are downright pathetic [I have learnt to order tandoori chicken instead], others are just a mish-mash of mayonnaise and horrid cheese.
Another annoying thing is that there are too few options to choose from. Most places do a few options. And they try to load you with ‘side dishes’.
But then, risotto is actually as complex as it can get. The dish needs pampering. You can’t just leave it aside while you are cooking it, you have to give it attention because only the correct timing will give you that rich texture and taste.
And that’s what I found interesting at Le Meridien’s risotto promotion. There are choices galore — with five each of vegetarian and non vegetarian options. Nothing here is pre-cooked — which spells the doom for risottos in most places. ‘We have prepared three different stocks — fish, chicken and vegetarian,’ says Karan Mehta, the executive sous chef. The rice used is imported arborio. The dishes we sampled were Risotto with chives, sliced prosciutto and asparagus and Lemony prawns with spicy onion lemongrass. The prosciutto [ham] goes perfect with the dish because it adds a salty taste to it. We squeezed some lemon to add that tangy taste. The juicy prawns and the lemongrass make the Lemony prawns risotto stand out. All in all, it deserves a try.
At: The One, Le Meridien, Windsor Place, Janpath
When: 23 September
Timings: Noon To 3 Pm (Lunch) 7.30 To Midnight (Dinner)
Meal for Two: Rs2,000 + Taxes