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    Awadi flavours rule the roost at Jamawar this week

    page9anchor2DEMYSTIFYING the revered culinary tradition from Lucknow is the mild mannered corporate Indian chef at The Leela, Farman Ali, with his repertoire of Awadi specials. But go with a big appetite and prepare to skip a meal or two the next day if you want to do real justice to the extravagant meats, spices and cooking techniques he showcases.
    “Unlike conventional Indian cooking, we rely on just a few select spices, marination and patient slow cooking mainly. And since many of the Lucknowi nawabs had poor teeth, the meat had to be especially tender,” he explains. Ali’s skill lies in his deceptively simple dishes. Prawns gently marinated in green chilli, coriander and mint, bone tender lamb ribs with just a whiff of yogurt, ginger and crushed pepper, buttery soft Kakori kebabs, unusual dishes like murgh gulabi — a rose petal, spices and chicken affair that allows a gently fragrant aftertaste to linger on your palate.

    More than usual
    In the midst of this carnivore fiesta, the vegetarian section is not sidelined. There is a happy line-up of apaneer and gucchi (morels) cooked with dried fruits, sundried figs, bamboo shoots and water chestnuts, besides the usual suspects like an intense moong dal and subz biryani. You might be tempted to skip the appetisers, get down to business with a serving of haleem — silky lamb pounded with wheat or a delightfully light murg zaffrani biriyani. But leave room for some phirni or fresh mango.
    Rs.3,500 for two. At HAL Airport Road. Details: 30571344

    —Jackie Pinto

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