In a nutshell:
We were just blown away by the food at this festival. Period
Address & other details: amaranta
Meal for 2: ₹2000 onwards
Cuisine type : vegetarian & non vegetarian
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YUMMRAJ rates all the food items & then gives a final overall rating, which is a simple average of the individual item ratings. What the ratings stand for: 5 = Excellent, 4 = Very Good, 3 = Good, 2 = Fair, 1 = Disaster
Short description- in case u r in a hurry
A decade back we saw Prima K at a food stall in Dastkar haat, chattarpur Andheria mor, delhi. We did not get to speak to her then though she was present.
We absolutely loved the food & wanted to have more of it. We got to know that she has been doing catering of Kerala cuisine in dehi NCR for many years . Read about that experience here – chattarpur pop up.
We checked how to order. We got to know that there is a minimum order quantity which is good for a gathering of at least 4-5 people. So for years we did not get to eat her food, till she did a pop up with Pritha sen after lockdown – onam pronam. That was splendid food again. Read about that experience here – onam pronam
Last year we organized a lunch & we ordered food home. Splendid. Read that story here – home delivered
So when we heard prima is doing a pop up at our favorite restaurant Amaranta, we were excited.
We booked a table in a cryptic name, so as not to get identified. Prima had not seen us in person so far.
We were shown a table of our choice by the hostess. We did not want to get identified.:)
We saw prima from a distance. She was chatting with guests at another table. We started reading the menu & discussing. That’s when prima arrived at our table (she was meeting all guests throughout the evening).
Prima asked us ‘have you tasted good made by me earlier’.
We said ‘yes’.
She said ‘where’?
We said ‘we had ordered at home’, assuming she would not remember bus among so many guests.
She said ‘what name did you order?’
We told the name of my partner.
She says ‘oh you are HIM!!!’
& we all burst out into laughter.
Well, we did not expect to get caught this way. Ha ha.
But this had a fab positive side effect:
1. Prima helped us with ordering the dishes & the sides.
2. She also kept coming back & kept telling us ‘this is how we eat this. X goes with Y, take a bit of M, mix it with N & add a tinge of Z etc etc.
3. prima also kept telling us how to pronounce the names of the dishes correctly.
The stories of food, the context of every food, the stories of ingredients, the unusual making processes of some, childhood memories that Prima kept telling us, opened up a new dimension. We were not just eating any more. We were immersing into an exotic (for us) experience. Mentally we were in a Syrian Christian household in Kerala. This was a rare feeling.
This meal will be remembered by us for long.
The menu card had very detailed description.
The restaurant interiors were beautiful – the look seemed different to me than what I remember from pre covid lockdown visit.
The best part of the experience at amaranta was:
1. the staff members were dressed in Kerala traditional wear (if I ignore the black industrial boots they wore with the saree / dhoti) &
2. The staff had been very well trained about the different items on the menu, the ingredients & also the pronountiations !!! I would not be surprised if someone told me that Prima has made them undergo written & viva tests. Whatever happened in the background, the result was fab. Much better trained than the staff at the oberoi gurgaon coffee shop.
Detailed description – in case u hv the time to njoy reading:
Loved the Pachmoru idiappam with a play of textures. The buttermilk with shallots & ginger was an absolute flavor bomb
Rate the amuse bouche 4.95/5
We felt like we were bowled over already
Outstanding banana chips with a strong enjoyable flavor of coconut oil
Podi ghee papad was a nice combination
Loved both the pickles
Rate the Condiments 4.5/5
We ordered Kanji with kachiamoru – rice broth served with seasonal vegetable. This was as grounded as it could get. We were eating with hand in a 5 star hotel restaurant & soaking in the experience. Prima insisted that we eat with hand. Loved munching on Varamanga – super tiny raw mango.
Rate it 4.95/5
We were given a scoop of Pulishery with Kerala cucumber – this was completely new for us. Kind of buttermilk curry, with cooked cucumber. Subtle yet impactful. Loved it. Very very enjoyable. Rate it 4.5/5
Kappa (Steamed tapioca) with shallot Chutney was given to us like a tasting plate.
This was cooked with coconut oil, shallot & curry leaves – wah. Perfectly cooked kappa beautifully flavored by the three ingredients mentioned above – crazy good. Unthinkable to have this food outside of someone’s house.
Realized that day that we have not had good kappa ever so far in life!!!
Rate it 4.75/5
We ordered a non vegetarian platter
Prawn & squid pepper fry – prawns & squids were Tossed with Red chillies & pepper. Both the sea food were perfectly cooked. Loved the way the flavours of seafood complimented that of the spices. None overpowered the other. Rate it 4.5/5
Chicken varathathu – Chicken in red chilly & ground spices was very good too. Rate it 4/5
Syrian Christian lamb cutlet – Lamb cutlet deep fried in coconut oil. Loved the crisp outer layer & the super juicy, flavor bomb (robust flavours of lamb). Rate it 4.75/5
Padimukkam (Sappan wood bark infused water ) was served before main course – it was a red coloured drink with a nice flavour, but almost no taste, that is had in hot weather. Prima suggested we add some lemon – as soon as we did that, the red drink turned yellow!!! New experience altogether.
Fish vevichathu – Home style Syrian Christian fish curry cooked with kodumpulli (Malabar tamarind) & onions. Rate it 4.25/5
Moplah lamb biryani was served with aubergine pachadi, crisp fried bitter gourd & sultana pickle.
As usual we started eating the biryani. Prima suggested during one of her rounds to put a little bit of everything together & have. That tasted new for us & we started appreciating after a few such bites.
Biryani was outstanding. Meat was juicy, perfectly cooked & just too good. The combos were fun. Rate it 4.75/5
Cooked down toddy-yoghurt banana & toasted coconut. Once again, a first time for us & phenomenally good to taste. Rate it 4.75/5.
Overall rating of food by prima at amaranta averages out to 4.6/5
Look forward to more such immersive meals & experiences by Prima & also such non-diluted, non-delhized hardcore local cuisine pop ups at Amaranta.