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The grain that matters

 Promita Mukherjee |  2012-09-15 22:24:33.0  |  New Delhi

The grain that matters

Trash it or love it, you can’t ignore the grains which form the staple of most cuisines. While for most of us it is indeed comfort food, a lot choose to give it a bad name [high carbs, fattenning blah blah], though research says otherwise.

So it was interesting to find that a star property come up with a rice promotion. Hang on, you would want to ask what is new about rice? Well, lots.

For instance, unless you are a compulsive globetrotter, you would not have had Venere rice, which originated in China and then travelled all the way to Italy. Or the Canadian wild rice which grow in shallow waters and small streams.


Pickwicks, the multi-cuisine restaurant which looks and feels more like a cafe, has brought together all this and more. They have sourced rare varieties of rice from 10 different countries.   

 As you enter the restaurant, you will find samples of different varieties of rice on a barrel, for you to see what each individual grain looks and smells like. From salads to desserts — everything in the menu is made with rice.

Like the salad, Insalata di riso venere, made with Venere rice from Italy. It had quail eggs, beans, salmon and shrimp. The rice grains were more like short brown legumes but tasted lovely. The wildrice pancake with forest mushroom and goat cheese gained character only when you added the mushrooms which were decent.

I was a little disappointed in the Paella ala valencia, made with Bomba rice gotten all the way from Spain. More so, because I have tasted better paella in Delhi itself.  However, the Taco rice, prepared with Japanese sticky rice and taco favoured ground beef was delicate and well made. I would pass the  dessert — Thai mango and coconut jasmine rice — was just blah! It tasted like kheer and was nothing noteworthy. But overall worth a try!


PAELLA VALENCIA (TO SERVE 4)

INGREDIENTS
  • 400 gms Bomba rice
  • 50 gms Calamari rings
  • 50 gms Prawns
  • 50 gms Fish Bassa
  • 50 gms String Chorizo
  • 50 gms Chicken leg boneless
  • 100 gms Onion
  • 50 gms Garlic
  • 250 gms Fresh tomatoes
  • 50 gms Bell pepper
  • 50 gms Zucchini
  • 10 gms Basil
  • 10 gms Parsley
  • 50 ml Extra virgin olive oil
  • 100ml Olive oil
  • ½ gm Saffron
  • 10gms Paprika powder
  • 100ml Chicken Stock

METHOD

Heat the Paella pan add olive oil, add diced chorizo, chicken and sauté. Then add crushed garlic and chopped onion and sauté. Add diced sea food and vegetables and cook for two minutes. Add paprika powder, grated tomatoes, saffron water and chicken stock. Add Bomba rice, basil, salt and cook for 20 minutes. Garnish with chopped parsley, basil sprig and extra virgin olive oil.


DETAIL


At: Pickwicks, The Claridges, 12 Aurangzeb Road
On till: 23 September
Phone: 3955 5082
Cost: RS 1,000 + Taxes

Promita Mukherjee

Promita Mukherjee

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