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    A new high-fat low-carb Ketogenic menu that promises taste and a short-cut to weight loss

    As I bite into the juicy chicken burger, I feel the usual sense of guilt at the carbohydrate indulgence. But wait, I am at the nine-month-old Reel Café with owner Shalini Padmanabhan who has invited me to try her new keto (ketogenic) menu that is gluten free, high fat, low carb and high protein. Being an ardent albeit sporadic follower of the Atkin’s diet (which also follows the principles of ketosis), the almond flour bun topped with a chicken patty and slices of greens puts my conscience to rest. I proceed to munch on a six inch pizza next. Padmanabhan’s new offering includes keto-friendly bases made of paneer for the vegetarians and one with mince chicken (each comes to under 10 gms of carbs) among other options like lasagna, bruschetta, shepherd’s pie (with cauliflower mash) and zucchini brownies, chia seed crackers and chocolate cupcakes. “With ingredients like Xanthan gum, Xylum husk and almond milk—my biggest challenge is to keep it cost effective,” says the baking aficionado who also owns the Piece of Cake bakery downstairs, and has been in the line for more than a decade.
    Padmanabhan’s USP for this lineup is home delivered meal plans. Sending out a combo of a soup and a main (you can choose lunch or dinner) daily, she says, “It is to encourage healthy eating with a cost effective offering (a seven day package costs `1,700 onwards).”
    With options of customising your meal package, the keto fare (you are allowed between 30 to 50 gms of carbs a day) has been designed by Padmanabhan in collaboration with city-based nutritionist and dietician, Shiny Surendran. While promising chocolate mousse with avocados, turnip fries and flax seed tortillas soon, Padmanabhan warns that dine-ins require an hour’s notice as the dishes are made fresh from the scratch.
    Near  Anna Nagar Roundtana. Details: 9940489976

    —Sabrina Rajan

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