Thursday evening saw me at Kanak, one of my favourite places for really indulgent Indian food. To celebrate their second anniversary, The Trident Hyderabad has put together a new menu which features some well loved dishes from the many food festivals they have curated over the past two years. Some of the festivals have been reviewed here and you can read all about them in detail ~ Anglo Indian, Khasa Dastarkhwan, Bengali Food Festival
Chef Manik Magotra always focusses on the food and flavours and at times allows the dishes to shine at their simplest best. This is something that hasn’t gone unnoticed by patrons in Hyderabad. While putting together the menu, some old gems like the Dal E Kanak, Patthar ka Gosht, Paturi Macchi, Kashmiri Seekh Gilafi , Murgh Kalmi Kebab etc are being retained.
The meal began with three appetisers. The Soya ke tootak ~ Crisp semolina patty filled with spiced soya bean was my least favourite, it was dry and didn’t have much flavour. Even the chutneys couldn’t salvage this one for me. A case of looks not living up to it’s promise. I would give this one a miss.
s two layers of soft cottage cheese stuffed with beetroot, dried pomegranate seeds which gives it a tang and chironji seeds to give it a richness. Made in a tandoor, this is a good starter for paneer lovers.
The next one was the Burrani Kalmi Kebab ~ marinated chicken legs, char grilled to perfection, these were so succulent and flavoured with garlic, pepper and black cardamom. This was easily my pick of the appetisers.
We began the main course with that much loved Hyderabadi delicacy Haleem. For those of you who still don’t know it, during the holy month of Ramzaan, Haleem drives Hyderabad berserk with way side stalls mushrooming to serve this meat, wheat and lentil based dish up to the ones who fast and those who just want to eat it. The dish is slow cooked to a mush over many hours, mashed to a pulp and seasoned with a blend of spices. Then garnished with melted ghee, fried onions, mint and coriander and served with a wedge of lemon and sometimes topped with fried nuts or a hard boiled egg, Haleem has GI status. There are many versions of it and Kanak serves a very sublime one. Perfectly cooked, garnished with caramelised onion, this does not come loaded with a film of ghee and was very flavourful.
One dish that I had eaten at the Khasa Dastarkhwan Festival and loved was the Amrud ki Sabzi and I was delighted to have it again. A silken rich gravy made with ground nuts and flavoured with saffron, the guava mildly sweet and yet firm, this is best enjoyed with a flatbread like naan or tandoori roti.
The other dish was the Bharwan Amchuri Bhindi ~ whole okra filled with a spice blend and tangy dried mango powder and tossed with onions. I didn’t quite like the over powering tang of the dried mango, a flavour I like in small measures. I felt the amchur was a bit too much.
For the non vegetarian selection, I tried the Maratban ka Meat ~ Traditional lamb curry slow cooked till the meat falls off the bone. This was terrific. The soft mutton, spices very flavourful but not overpoweringly so and the gravy not over whelming, this was my pick of the main course dishes I was served.
The Murgh Handi Korma ~ chicken in an almond and yogurt base again from the Khasa Dastarkhwan menu was what a good korma should be like, flavoursome and indulgent. The chicken cooked to an almost melting point.
The meal ended with a portion each of Rajbhog ~ which was ok, I am not a fan and the stunning Akhrot aur Badam ka halwa ~ a pudding made with a paste of almonds and studded with walnuts, generously coated in ghee. What I liked was unlike most cloyingly sweet Indian desserts, this one was just mildly sweetened, enough to satisfy one’s sweet tooth, yet not enough to cause a sugar rush.
The menu is available as A La Carte from the 24th of September 2015.
Kanak, The Trident, Hitech City, Hyderabad
Recommendations: Burrani Kalmi Kebab, Maratban ka Meat, Amrud ki Sanzi, Akhrot aur Badam Halwa
Dinner for two excluding alcohol: Rs. 2500 (approx.)
Hours: 7.30 pm to midnight.
Location: Hitech City, Hyderabad
Credit Card Accepted: Yes
Valet Parking: Available
Telephone: 91 40 6623 2323