A late morning cuppa, a quick brunch, a quiet evening.
In introspection. In jubilance. In gloom.
Whenever Skeety does not want to tax her brain about the place she should be headed to, the brain, on its own, pops out the answer: MARKER CAFE.
Pleasant blue walls, good service, decent food, serene ambience – I show you, today, My Beloved Pleasure Cavern.
In one of the backlanes of Khan Market, I climb up a dozen broad stairs to reach this place.
And then, the fun begins.
This winter, I was there to sample their Fondue.
Skeety knows that the Fondue being a community dish, is not meant to be had alone, but then, for want of peace, Skeety had it all by herself 😛
Okay, Skeety did order the Kahwa alongwith. If that is any relief for those who go back with growling tummies after reading my posts 😛
The Fondue is tastefully served in an earthern pot (with a tealight flickering beaneath to keep the cheese bubbling) with squared pieces of bread and crackers.
People at Market Cafe happily admit that they don’t do an authentic Fondue, but what is their own variant of the original recipe. And Skeety says it tastes oh-so-lovely, though she is YET to taste the real thing.
The Kahwa was not as good as it ought to be. But then, they claim to have learnt it from a Kashmiri guy whose preparation is much appreciated in the Delhi party circuit.
The Hot Chocolate Mud Pie is their clame to fame and I absolutely love the Goat’s cheese on baked Walnut bread with Za’tar that they do.
Coming back to the Fondue (which is the swiss national dish), there are interesting legends which do rounds as the printed word spreads across the globe through some of those wonderfully bound books on food (not recipes books, mind you).
I will share two with you:
One goes that during the harsh winters, the shepherds of the Alps, having little or no vegetation around, combined cheese, wine and milk to make the cheese sauce, and ate it with the thick bread.
Another interesting version is that during the Swiss Reformation, when food supplies fell alarmingly short in Zurich, the Catholics and the Protestants merged all cheese, wine and milk into a big pot and ate it by dunking pieces of bread into this pot of cheese sauce, and hence was born, the great FONDUE.
What are you waiting for? Dunk your way to a riot of flavours, before the foggy mornings fade away to pave way for the scorching summers. And come to me with a happy tummy and smiling face 🙂
Hot chocolate at Costa is NOT passé. But, Skeeter has found a new flame, the Sao Tome Hot Chocolate at Choko la (Khan Market branch ONLY please).
Choko la (meaning let’s drink chocolate together) is Delhi’s very own chocolate boutique at Khan Market.
As she sits down one pleasant evening by the window seat, Skeety is attended by a lady with the most pleasant smile across her face.
Skeety takes eons to decide on her food and drink (as always). The lady patiently keeps an eye on Skeety to see when she is ready to place the order. A while later, she gives up on Skeety, comes to her rescue, asks her preferences, and recommends a Sao Tome (single origin hot chocolate made from cocoa beans of that region). Skeety surrenders, and to accompany the drink, she orders a Chocolate Mousse.
Eight minutes pass by. Enter, Sao Thome alongwith a piece of the chocolate in the unmolten state. Sao Tome is made with dark chocolate and contains 70 percent cocoa content. It is characterised by its firm body and distinct taste. Skeety enjoyed each sip so much, that she ended up eating her drink!
Having finished the drink and the mousse, Skeety speaks to the Manager who believes in making customers relish the ‘real’ chocolates rather than the regular Cad bar or the Fererro Rocher for that matter. Thus, he encourages all to try their Liqueur Truffles and Tanzania hot chocolate (with 73 percent cocoa content).
Skeety then moves on to meet the man behind the scenes, the chef Nikhil Baveja. After a small chat session, she asks him what would he call the specialty of the house. Ice-creams comes the reply.
According to Nikhil, they are as good as home-made ones and are freshly churned. Skeety shall wait till summers to see (read taste) it for herself.
Till then, let’s Choko la!
P.S.:The staff at the Khan Market branch do a better job than the ones at Basant Lok. The Basant Lok branch is their first one and is more sought after. Choko la at Khan Market is a new-kid-on-the-block and is doing quite well. Atleast for now.
Update: Nikhil no longer works at Choko la.
…as always, I am.
Food, ummm, rather ‘good’ food, lifts up Skeeter’s spirits like nothing else.
On a gloomy Sunday, completing work early at office, she went to Khan Market to book her copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Sadly, the market was closed, as it is on any other Sunday. Memory weakness is at its best with her. Duh!
The idea of heading back home seemed boring. She headed to her favourite place in town – Market Cafe, instead. Unaccompanied. It did not matter as it would have at other eateries around town (funny stares you know). She chose a ‘perfect’ corner table as her abode for the next two hours that she was there.
And now, comes the food. The Chef was to prepare ‘Baked Goat’s cheese on Walnut bread with Za’tar’ for Reeta Skeeter. It should have been ‘Goat’s cheese on baked Walnut bread with Za’tar’; some mistake there while preparing the menu card. Anyway, the waiter was to serve the same with Pepsi.
Goat’s cheese, known to commons (hehe) as Feta, is her new fetish, the Feta fetish. Not many people like it; you got to love your cheese to love or even like Feta. And Feta can be sheep’s milk cheese too. If purchasing you got to pick yours carefully, else you would end up tasting the other version.
Coming back to the dish that she’d ordered. The portion was enough for her. The price was a wee bit on the higher side, but was definitely worth it. They could’ve baked it a bit more. Next, she ordered ‘Coffee Explosion’. This was a sundae. From the bottom to the top it contained: Crushed brownie, fudge sauce, coffee ice cream, coffee powder sprinkled on top of the ice cream, nuts all over and two biscotti. It tasted heavenly, and made up for all the coffee Skeeter has not had to have in about three years now. But by the time she reached the bottom , she had to STOP eating, else she would’ve fell sick. It was too heavy on her tummy.
In all, it was an enjoyable afternoon with the self. She looks forward to many more!