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    Prior to a menu change, Crimson Chakra pays tribute to Tamil Nadu, with 10 days of regional delicacies

    Nikhil Moturi is getting nostalgic. After all, his four-year-old restaurant, Crimson Chakra, is undergoing necessary tweaks to give diners a bit of fresh perspective. The restaurant in Gandhi Nagar will soon offer a new menu with lots of fusion (like the achari risotto) and classics like drumstick curry resurfacing from his first menu. Among what’s new, are exciting Continental dishes like the prawns infused with mayonnaise, honey and walnuts, and the whole red snapper in orange sauce. And fans of Crimson Chakra’s mud pie can revel that all their desserts are being retained, even as the restaurateur hunts for a proper supply chain to add mussels, clams and turkey to his menu. But before this 12-page menu is introduced, Moturi has a quick surprise — a special dinner called Southern Silk Route, that will be a festive precursor to the new menu launch.
    Rustic flavours
    Starting today, dinner at Crimson Chakra will showcase delicacies spanning regions from Salem to Madurai. Expect dishes like the tangy Varasanadu meen kuzhambu, or the creamy Kumarapalayam kozhi curry. These dishes illustrate how the cuisines of the four southern states borrow subtly from each other. While the former bears close resemblance to the fiery pulusus of Andhra, the latter is a coconut-laden concoction, not unlike the chicken curries of Kerala. There’s dishes unique to Tamil Nadu too, and chef Jeeva, a prodigy of the late regional cuisine expert Jacob Aruni, does justice to them all. If the humble murungakai curry is an ode to the simple but addictive flavour of villages, the butter beans paal khurma is a milky celebration of diced potato and the legume, generally prepared for temple festivals.
    More to come
    We could go on about ragi dosas, deep fried banana flowers and crabs in a gravy of rasam spices — all part of our Southern Silk Route dinner. But we’ll leave you with the knowledge that there are three such festival menus on rotation for 10 days. Post that, de-constructed burgers and pizza cookies will vie for your attention, from a spanking new restaurant menu.
    Southern Silk Route dinner buffet costs `800 per head. Details: 9677277900

     Ryan Peppin

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