When I received the invite from Westin for the Rajasthani Food festival, I was thrilled and excited yet a bit skeptical. Whenever I dined in a restaurant which came with the Rajasthani tag, the menu consisted of only vegetarian dishes and a little sweetness was added to many main dishes. I am not a big fan of vegetarian dishes and the sweetness should be reserved for desserts alone 🙂 But again, it was an invite from Westin and I didn’t want to miss that opportunity!
All of us who got invited reached the venue around 7.30. The buffet was arranged at the All Day Dining – Seasonal tastes restaurant. The decor was extremely beautiful and the hospitality was topnotch.
The hero behind this Rajasthani food festival Chef Satveer was introduced to us and the food was served at the table so that it would be convenient for us to click the pics as well as enjoy the food thoroughly. The widespread menu with many spicy, non vegetarian dishes took me in to surprise and chief Chef Yatendra Rawad explained that the Rajasthani cuisine is often confused with the Gujarati cuisine. The Gujarati cuisine mainly consists of the vegetarian dishes whereas Rajasthani cuisine is a mix of both vegetarian and non vegetarian dishes but both cuisine consist of certain similarities such as extensive usage of dairy products.
The welcome drink had 2 options to choose from – Nimbu Shikanji and Makhaniya lassi. Then came a few starters with authentic Rajasthani flavors.
Khasta Kachori – It was smaller than the regular Kachori we get in chaat counters. When asked about the same, chef Yatendra explained that the bigger one is called as ‘Raj Kachori’ which used to be served for only royal families. The Khasta Kachori was small yet tasted yum.
Channe aur moong ki seekh – Looked pretty much like our masala vada. When we expressed our concern that it is a bit dry, chef explained that it was made dry on purpose. In olden days, when people go for hunting, there would not be any means to cook a meal in a dessert like Rajasthan. So they prepare food and take it with them. Food items could be perishable if the moisture content was more. Hence a few dishes were made dry to keep them fresh throughout the journey.
Hari Mirch Achari Machili – A well cooked fish, in tikka style with unique flavors. Tasted best out of the 3 starters served.
Then followed the main course. There were 3 non-vegetarian gravies served.
Khar Murgh (chicken gravy), Junglee Maas (mutton gravy), Machili Dhardara Masala (fish gravy)
I have tasted only the chicken and mutton gravy. Both gravies were unique, distinct from each other and full of flavors. They went really well with the hot rotis served.
I also tasted the Palak paneer kofta which had the softest paneer I ever tasted and Makai aur hara pyaz ki subzi along with the Rotis.
Khargosh ki Biriyani – I was a little shocked to see Rabbit Briyani on the menu. Well it was a signature dish to show the hunting traditions of Rajputs of the Rajasthan. This was the first time I am eating rabbit meat and I liked it. The biriyani rice was smoked which did not favor my taste buds much nevertheless others seemed to be enjoying it.
I also got my hands on Jaipuri mewa pulao, basmati rice cooked with the rich aromas of saffron, raisins and apricots. It went well with the spicy chicken gravy
Other than the mentioned items, there were Salad counter, Chaat counter, Ice – cream counter and a desert counter.
I ignored the usual items such as cakes and pastries and directly dived in to Chena malpua, rabdi and it tasted as a total bliss.
The menu was catered in a way to satisfy the expectations of international guests as well. Hence, there were a few continental dishes available. Here is the menu RAJASTHANI FOOD FESTIVAL MENU with all the items mentioned.
Dining at a star hotel is not only about the food but it is also about the overall experience. If you want to experience a royal treatment with unlimited exquisite Rajasthani cuisine, this place is a must visit 🙂
Where: Seasonal Tastes, The Westin Chennai Velachery
When: 18th January – 31st January, 2016
Dinner: 7:00 – 11:00 pm
Price : 1550+ taxes
For reservations, contact:
Address:154 Velachery Main Road Chennai,Tamil Nadu 600042 India
Contact: Shrikanth 8939892022