This post first appeared on 18th November 2010
One of the requirements for being a head of state is being able to tackle state dinners. And for the Obamas on their recent visit to India, it was a very grand state dinner. Here’s the menu – with my approximate translations:
Fish tikka achari fish marinaded with spices and yoghurt, then grilled
Shahi jeera pulao rice pilau with black cumin seeds
Chicken shami kebab chicken cooked with lentils, then chopped finely with spices, formed into small cakes and fried
Pista murg chicken with pistachios
Balak papri chat spinach leaves dipped in chickpea flour batter, fried, and topped with fried crushed Indian bread
Sunehri kalai lamb lamb – if you know how it’s cooked, let me know!
Mahrani hara pyaz mushrooms with spring onions and herbs
Kyoti dal chickpea and black lentil dhal
Bharwan parwal stuffed gourd
Pineapple halva grated pineapple cooked with sugar and dried milk
Herbal teas, breads from rotis to naan, and churipayas (translation of this one welcomed too).
No alcohol is served at Indian state banquets – to the disappointment of Indian wine producers.
Of course the British have long been familiar with Indian food, and the first Indian restaurant in London opened in George St. W 1 in 1809. Not a success, the owner retreated to Brighton and started a massage and shampooing business.
For more foodie thoughts, join Ann’s foodies’ walk on Saturday March 29 2014, 10am at Monument tube, Fish St. Hill exit.
And here's the Foodies London film…
A London Walk costs £9 – £7 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.