Showing posts with label DIY. Show all posts
Showing posts with label DIY. Show all posts

Sunday, 17 May 2015

The food scenario in Chennai has recently seen a plethora of International brands setting up outlets presenting us with their signature specialities. The latest non-contemporary brand to join this list of International brands is ‘Menchies Frozen Yogurt’ from USA with the Chennai outlet being their second location in India. FROYO (FROzen YOgurt) as it is commonly referred to is an absolutely perfect healthy substitute to those staying away from ice creams.
(Froyo Dispenser)
There are a couple of things that makes Menchies unique in comparison to other dessert places. First and foremost, you can completely opt for a hands on experience on creating your own version of FROYO. All you need to do is pick up a waffle/cone/cup and head to the froyo dispenser and dispense your choice of flavour from about 10 flavours that are changed on a daily basis. What is more surprising is that the flavours are paired as couples such that in case you need a mix of 2 paired flavours, you do not have to make the effort to dispense each flavour as you can use the middle portion of the dispenser to provide a mix of both flavours amongst the pair. There is no restriction on how much you would like to fill your serving size as the froyo is not priced based on flavour or size rather on the total weight. So feel free to have as little or as much as your palate desires.
(Toppings Counter)
Once you have picked the flavours, next is to add toppings and sauces to enhance the flavours. They have a choice of about 16 toppings to choose from and another 6 sauces to choose from ranging from fudge to Nutella to honey. Once you have created your dream combination, you just need to take it to the staff nearby who will weigh in the froyo. I honestly believe that this methodology of serving desserts gives the customer the flexibility to have a guilt free experience as they are not bound to over consume under the disguise of not wanting to waste the same.

During my visit, I got to taste a combi of Mint & Chocolate and also another combi of Mango & Vanilla. The Mint-Chocolate froyo resembled the famous chocolate “After Eight”. The lightness of the froyo made it very easy on the palate and made us wanting for more as there was absolutely zero guilt. Having sampled the other flavours (Yes!!! You can sample as many flavours as you want before you make up your mind), I wanted to try the classic combo of Mango-Vanilla which is my opinion was the most divine combo on offer that evening. The flavour of Mango was perfect to elate it in comparison to the vanilla yet wasn’t strong such that it was over-powering. Overall, Menchies frozen yogurt is truly a great replacement for those who want to avoid ice creams without compromising much on taste or texture. 
(Mint-Chocolate Froyo)
(Strawberry Waffle Cone)
(Mango-Vanilla Froyo)
‘Menchies Frozen Yogurt’ is located on Khader Nawaz Khan Road and should cost you about ₹ 150-200 per serving depending on the quantity and toppings you choose. The charge per gram is ₹ 1.30 + taxes plus any additional for waffles or cones. 

To be updated on my latest reviews, do subscribe to the feed by leaving your email address in the subscribe section on the top right hand side of this post. If this article interested you, please share it so others may be interested and benefited too!!! Request you to also visit our Facebook page Food In Chennai - Facebook and share the page with a Like amongst your friends and also follow us on our twitter handle at @FoodInChennai. You can also follow us on Google Plus at Food in Chennai-GooglePlus. Please also feel free to g+1 this post so others may be benefited too

Friday, 13 September 2013

The most favoured dish amongst the North Indian cuisine for me is the Butter Chicken/Paneer Masala. Incidentally this is also one of the first gravy dishes that I began my cooking with. Being in UK during my student times, cooking it always made me feel close to home. Some weeks ago I received few packets of home made masala's for different dishes from "Zaiqa - The Spice Store". One amongst them was for Butter Chicken Masala. The aroma of the masala made me cook up my favourite curry once again. And this time, it's here for you to try too.

Serves: 3-4

  • 1/2 kg boneless Chicken pieces
  • 4 Tomatoes (boiled & pureed) or 1 cup Tomato puree
  • 4 medium Onions finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp Ginger-Garlic paste
  • 2 tbsp Zaiqa Butter Chicken Masala for marination
  • 3-4 tbsp Zaiqa Butter Chicken Masala for gravy
  • 1 tsp Fenugreek leaves
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 3-4 tbsp of Cream
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • Salt to taste
(Zaiqa Masala's)
  1. Marinate the chicken pieces with 2 tbsp of Zaiqa masala and required amount of salt. Allow to rest for 1-2 hours refrigerated. (You can substitute Zaiqa masala with regular fry masala)
  2. Heat the oil and butter in a deep cooking pot.
  3. Add the finely chopped onions and sauté till the onions turn slightly brownish. 
  4. Now add the ginger-garlic paste and mix well.
  5. Add the marinated chicken and allow it to cook in the mixture on a low flame. This should take about 7-10 minutes.
  6. Next add the tomato puree and close the lid for about 5-7 minutes. Once the puree is cooked, add the Zaiqa masala, fenugreek leaves, milk and cream. Allow it to simmer till the mixture thickens. (You can substitute Zaiqa masala with some Garam Masala and Methi leaves)
  7. Remove from the stove and garnish with some more cream and butter.

Best served with Butter Naan, Roti and Fried Ghee Rice.
(Ready to be served)

  • Vegetarians can substitute Paneer for Chicken. If using Paneer, mix them with the masala and shallow fry them before adding to the mixture.
  • If you want a very rich creamy gravy, add more cream.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

With the dawn of the New Year, came the 1st Showcase of the Chennai Food Guide for the year 2013. Having become a phenomenon in the social media networks, Pizza Republic finally wanted to open up their offerings to the demanding bloggers of CFG. Pizza Republic opened its first outlet in Tharamani next to Ascenda IT Park. Following the tremendous success, new outlets have opened up in the last few months at Mogappair and Egmore with further outlets planned in the coming months in Besant Nagar, Nungambakkam, Ambattur, St. Thomas Mount and so on.
Having already been at the Tharamani outlets many a time and experiencing Mr. Ramakrishnan's innovations with Pizza, I immediately jumped on the bandwagon the moment I was informed that Pizza Republic Mogappair was organizing a Showcase. True to his style, Ramki (As he his fondly called) trumped us once again with his wonderful innovations on what all a simple pizza can be converted to.
As the pizza's at Pizza Republic are exceptionally yummier compared to other outlets in Chennai, I would today not be writing about their food but instead give you a culinary tour as to what all can be made in the name of Pizza's. My earlier blog on Pizza Republic can be found at
Well here begins the amazing photolog from the CFG Showcase at Pizza Republic - Mogappair.

A simple pizza rather pizza base/flat bread sans any cheese delicately seasoned with Olive Oil and Ramki's selection of herbs.
(Cheese-less Pizza)
(Cheese-less Pizza)
What, a Pizza without Cheese??? Yes you read it right!!! A regular Pizza with amazing toppings minus any cheese. Did taste yummy though but would definitely prefer pizza's with cheese. What good is a Pizza without cheese. As well not have one.

(Pesto with Shallots Pizza)
A thin crust pizza having shallots and an amazing spread of Pesto sauce.
(Pesto Pizza Puff)

(Cheesy Pizza Puff)
(Cheesy Pizza Puff)

(Array of Pizza Puffs)
Another one of Ramki's on the spot innovation. "Pizza Puffs". They were just mind boggling. The moment the photographers completed their mindful duty of clicking, the puffs disappeared in a jiffy.
(Calzone Deconstructed)
Another innovation from Ramki, the Pizza Republic "Calzone". Personally feel that it would have tasted even better if it was a tad more cheesy...
(White Chocolate Cake - Priya NM)

(White Chocolate Cake - Priya NM)
A surprise cake from fellow CFG member Ms. Priya NM. An yummy White Chocolate Cake. Nishanth of CFG formally cut the cake to begin 2013 with a bang.

(Achar Pizza)
(Achar Pizza)
Presenting a typical Indian style Pizza, The Achar Pizza. Never felt like I was eating a Pizza instead was more like having Chappathi/Parotta with Achar.
(Veg Pizza with Extra Cheese)
A fully loaded Cheeeessssyyyy Pizza.
(Pizza??? Cheese??? Frog Legs???)

(Multigrain Crust)
 The perfect Multi-grain Crust.
(My Order of the day)

(Again the Tandoori Chicken Pizza with Multigrain Crust)
 This was my order for the day. A Multi-grain Pizza with Tandoori Chicken, Olives, Corn and Garlic. This was probably one of the best combinations I've ever made at Pizza Republic. Lest I forget, Inspite of the pizza getting cold, thanks to the photo session, I was still able to stretch the pizza up to an approximate height of 3ft.
(That's the Pizza Stretch in progress - Pic Courtesy: Chinna)
That's me attempting a try at the longest pizza stretch record. As the pizza had cooled down, managed only close to 3 ft where as the existing record is at 4ft plus. I guess I still hold the record at least at the Mogappair outlet.
(A spicy Pizza with extra Jalapeno's)
 If my order was the best I'd done so far, this Pizza was by far the hottest I'd ever tasted. A Spicy pizza with extra Jalapeno's. It would be a fiery challenge for anyone to finish this stuff up without hunting for a lake...
(Pineapple/Hawaii Pizza)

Having heard a lot about Hawaiin Pizza, thought today would be a good time to taste the same. Personally used to wonder how can people ever have pineapple on a pizza. But to my dismay, it did taste nice. Gave a whole new dimension to the taste buds.

(Sliced up Dizza)
Although taken from one of my earlier visits to Pizza Republic - Tharamani, thought it would make sense having yet another of Ramki's innovation in this photolog. As you can see, Ramki cooked up the Italian version of our very own Dosa. Aptly named Dizza, this one is guaranteed to blow your mind off. This is available only when Ramki is present in the Kitchen and when you order ensure you ask for loads of cheese.
(Puttu Maavu Pizza)
This too is from an earlier visit while we were exploring the possibilities of having a gluten-free pizza. And impromptu came the idea from Ramki to try using Puttu Maavu to make the dough and voila. This Simple Puttu Maavu pizza with Tomatoes and Cheese were damn crispy and delicious.

And finally, a first time attempt at making a gif animation. This is a classic example of how tasty and cheesy pizza's from Pizza Republic can get. I can vouch that every slice of your pizza is gonna be yumm!!!. Any guesses as to who was my model. Folks from CFG, any guesses???
So what more are you waiting for. Head straight to your nearest Pizza Republic to experience the Republic Fantasy.
Pizza Republic outlets are locates in Tharamani, Mogappair and Egmore. You can get more details on their location by visiting
If this article interested you, please share it so others may be interested too!!!
To keep yourself updated on new reviews, kindly click subscribe by email on the right hand side of the home page.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Who doesn't love Garlic breads. If there is any accompaniment that goes well for majority of European cuisines, it has to be the mighty Garlic Bread. Aren't there times we used to spent a fortune for garlic breads when we go to restaurants and eat it by proportioning it between all those present on the table. Well gone are those days. Here you will find how to make different varieties of Garlic bread in a quick, easy and consistent manner.

Serves: 3-4
Preparation time: 2 minutes
Oven time: 20 minutes 

  • 1 baguette of plain French Bread
    • Available at all bakeries - Prefer the one at Star Bazaar/Hot Breads/French Loaf
  • 100 gms of butter (No harm in putting more)
  • 3 cloves of Garlic 
    • Can also use 1 tsp of Garlic paste but make sure u strain it.
  • Oregano/Parsley seasoning
    • Can also use Garlic Bread Seasoning from Keya - Available at Amma Nanna, Adyar

(French Baguette)
  1. Pre-heat your oven to 180 C
  2. Place the butter in a microwave oven and heat it for 15 seconds on High. This will melt the butter sufficient enough to mix our ingredients yet preventing it from melting into liquid state.
  3. Crush the cloves of Garlic using pestle and mortar (in case you do not have one, just place the gloves on a flat surface and crush them using the side of a broad knife).
  4. Mix the garlic paste, butter and seasoning (according to taste) in a bowl.
  5. Make diagonal slices on the baguette carefully by ensuring you do not cut it all the way down.
  6. Spread the mixture between the diagonal pockets as shown.
  7. Smoother the remaining butter on top of the baguette and around its sides.
  8. Wrap the baguette in alumnium foil and place it in the pre-heated oven in the middle tray.
  9. After 10 mins, turnover the baguette and leave it for a further 7-10 mins.
  10. Remove it from the oven and slice the cuts all the way down and serve it.
(Garlic Butter mixture smoothered)
(Fresh from the Oven)
  • You can also mix in shredded cheese slices to give it a cheesy flavoring.
  • After removing from the oven, you can even place some cheese and chicken cubes on top of each slice and place it back on the oven for a few minutes to have a Cheese Chicken Garlic Bread.
If this recipe interested you, please share it so others maybe interested too.

Please feel free to leave your comments.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Who wouldn't want to have fresh Pizza's... That too on a Saturday night with friends...

After a quick plan-up with fellow CFGians, a bunch of us planned to spend the Saturday evening at the recently opened Pizza Republic in Tharamani. Having plenty of time between end of office and the planned meet up at Pizza Republic, a fellow CFGian and myself decided to head out to the Thai Food workshop which was organized by CFG. The mentor for the workshop was Mrs. Sara Koshy about whom I've heard heaps and was curious to taste her cooking. We were lucky enough to have a taste at the excellent Thai food that was prepared. The Buoroy dessert was out of the world. I was secretly gulping the stuffed lychees one by one after everyone left. How I wish I had really attended the entire workshop. Folks you can keep checking out the CFG events page Chennai Food Guide - Events to know more about their upcoming events.
Pizza Republic
Outlet + Kitchen
After having a sample of the wonderful Thai food, we promptly returned to Pizza Republic for the meet up. Having heard a lot about Pizza Republic, I was really waiting for an opportunity to visit this place. First impression was a bit intrigued. I was wondering how is it possible to make pizzas for so many customers in such a small place. But what I loved most was the seating. Albeit being small (considering this set up was more of a test kitchen turning main stream owing to the instant hit amongst customers), the outdoor seating was wonderful especially with the night time weather in Chennai of late being really enjoyable.  
Mr. Rama Krishnan
We were met by the co-owner of Pizza Republic, Mr. Rama Krishnan, who was very courtesy and kind enough to introduce us to the concept of Pizza Republic. The differentiating factor between Pizza Republic and other pizza joints in the city is the fact that Pizza Republic offers you the option of the fun filled D-I-Y (Do It Yourself) method of making your Pizza's. If pizza making really interests you, you just need to follow the following steps.
  1. Pick up a 9" or 12" pizza box from the counter top.
  2. Select your choice of crust [Italian, Soft Pan, Multigrain, Thin Crust and Stuffed Crust].
  3. Select how spicy you would like your Pizza [Not Spicy, Medium Spicy, Extra Spicy].
  4. Select how much cheese you would like [Not Cheesy, Normal, Extra Cheesy].
  5. Select all the toppings that you would need according to your preference.
  6. Hand over the box to the cashier for billing and inform him that you would like to make your pizza.
You may be asked to wait sometime in the event of the kitchen being busy but this is not the case often as their turn around time is pretty high for a pizza joint. You'll then be asked to wear the head cap and hand glow before entering the kitchen to keep up with their strict quality control standards. 

Now the fun begins. You will at first hand see how the pizza base dough is being made and spread on the pizza pan following which you will be able to add the sauces, toppings and cheese as per your order. The process is pretty much the same in case if you would like to have a salad before you pizza. Mr. Rama Krishnan can also customize his offerings to your requirements if you can check with him before hand. Once your pizza is placed on the conveyor oven, your job inside the kitchen is over and you can get back to your table and relax (rather anticipate with excitement  for the arrival of your pizza, which shouldn't take more than 15 minutes. 
Choose your pizza
Dough being prepared
Freshly made Pizza base
Selection of toppings
Making my own pizza
Here it goes at one end
The pizza's were the best of all. They were fresh, juicy, cheesy and light on the palate. Yes a pizza being light on your palate. I believe the reason could be the freshly prepared dough for the pizza base rather than those pre-made ones you get at other pizzerias. The pizzas were so yummy that we were on an ordering spree and infact lost count at the total number of pizza's the group had. My rough estimate would be close to 6 pizza's among a group strength of 8. I'm sure this gives an idea about how tasty it was. The pizza's kept coming and disappearing in a jiffy.
Deliciously out the other end
Fresh and Hot
So Yummmmm!!!!
During the course of the evening, we were also told about a very unique ability of their pizza box. The pizza box at Pizza republic is a custom design that ensures that a couple of pizza slices can be effectively packed and carried by ladies inside their clutch. If you are wondering how, check out the picture below which is the base of the box converted for a easy carriage of leftover pizzas.

Easy takeaway for the leftovers
Prior to my visit their, I was informed that this place was a real pocket friendly, value for money pizza outlet. True to the opinions, it hardly costed Rs. 300 per head for an enormous serving of pizza's and salads. The point to be mentioned is that most of us even took takeaways that evening. Am not too sure about what others felt [I've not heard anything against so far], so presuming it was the same with all others, the pizza's when reheated taste as good as how it tasted fresh from the oven. Folks at home have become an instant fan of Pizza Republic and its concept such that the nagging for a family visit started of instantly.


This is one pizza joint that is gonna stay here forever.. True to its name, this is indeed a Republic to true Pizza lovers...

Pizza Republic is located on CSIR Road [off Rajiv Gandhi IT Expressway], Tharamani. It is before Ascendas on the left and is located within the same compound as Copper Chimney.

If this article interested you, please share it so others maybe interested too!!!

To keep yourself updated on new reviews, kindly click subscribe by email on the right hand side on the home page.