Mumbai is home to a community of Zoroastrians popularly known as Parsi.

I didn’t eat much at Parsi restaurants. (In part because there aren’t many.) But our lunch at Brittania was especially excellent. Our waiter was Mr. Kohinoor, one of the sons of the founder. Mr. Kohinoor is 85 and entertained us with his wit and charm, giving us a little background on the restaurant which was founded in 1917 by his father. Apparently, Brittania was an extremely posh restaurant until the British occupied the premises in WW11. Then, some of the glory faded.

The food remains perfect.

This is salli keema. Probably the best keema I’ve tasted so far. Parsi style, topped with crispy fried shoestring potatoes.

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And if you visit Mumbai you will have to eat Brittania’s famous berry pulao.

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This is actually an Iranian dish, I understand. The berries are barberries, about the size of dried currants, but with a sour tang that complements the other flavors in the pulao perfectly. Stefin thought this was excellent.

For dessert at Brittania we had mishti doi, a Bengali dessert of sweet, thick yogurt served in a little clay cup.

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I didn’t realize when I’d eaten at Paradise earlier that it offered Parsi food. Indeed, I think the Temtation I wrote about below must be a version of Chicken Farcha. When we returned I thought we should order the Buccaneer’s Delight. I didn’t know what it was, but I liked the name. Turned out to be a roast chicken in gravy.

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Served with rice:

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Minus the green chilis in the rice, Buccaneer’s Delight reminds me of Sunday afternoons at grandma’s house. For dessert we had Paradise’s lagun nu custard. It had a melting soft texture and was topped with just a little sweet spice. It was excellent.

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I also ate at Jimmy Boy, described in a local guide as serving “fabulous” Parsi food. It was terrible. I’m including the photos because they still might give some sense of what Parsi food is like, even if this is a poor example.

Patra ni Machi, fish steamed with chutney in banana leaves:
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Chicken Farcha:
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Dhanksak with dal, a dish famous for its complexity:
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Lagun nu Custard. This was, sadly, like cold, hard, sweet scrambled eggs:
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