|Dark Chocolate and Almond Fudge|
|L- Chef Harpawan Singh Kapoor, R – Chef Gaurav Lavania|
Chef Harpawan Singh Kapoor, Executive Sous Chef & Pastry Chef, ITC Sonar and Chef Gaurav Lavania, Senior Sous Chef, was responsible for creating a host of traditional Easter delicacies, sweet treats and breads at The Gourmet Shop and Eden Pavilion. As soon as I entered, we were greeted with the sight of a huge trolley filled with an incredible array of goodies – breads, buns, fudge, cakes – the recipes were all traditional. Chef Harpawan took us through the extensive menu that will be available at The Gourmet Shop from 16th to 20th – Carrot Cake, Hot Cross Buns, Peanut and Chocolate eggs, Sour Cherry Turnovers and Dark Chocolate fudge to name a few.
|Clockwise from top right – Hot cross buns, Nougatine, Coconut and Lemon Tart, Sour Cherry Turnover, Peanut and Chocolate Eggs, Lemon and Poppy Seed Cake with Berry Topping, Carrot Cake. Center – Dark Chocolate and almond Fudge.|
While we were quite happy to see the host of traditional fare on offer, my eyes continually strayed to the bread. There were, among other kinds, a beautifully made Easter Bread, which was basically a version of a Challah bread, braided and topped with eggs which would cook with the bread while it bakes. It was not yeasty, but rather was an egg-based bread which was salty and gloriously dense, with a sweet glaze which added to the flavors beautifully. I kept on going back to it while trying out the other sweet treats.
I am perennially weak towards fudge, and the Milk Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Fudge proved to be my nemesis. Extremely sweet, this fudge was dense, smooth and filled with Macadamia nuts, a combination which has never failed to perk me up.
|Milk Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Fudge|
As we moved to our main course, Chef Lavania explained that the menu for the Easter Brunch was a combination of Indian and Western Traditions. As a result of which, we started off our meal with a glass of Prawn and Egg Cocktail, with small, sweet prawns immersed in Thousand Island dressing, garnished with some lettuce and slices of hard-boiled eggs.
The Asparagus and Balsamic Trio was a small huddle of cooked asparagus, topped with Parmesan and drizzled with some Balsamic. Although summery and light, the asparagus for me was slightly less seasoned than I would have liked, and I would have preferred eating this with the main course as a side, rather than an individual dish.
|Asparagus Balsamic Trio|
Eggs are on the Brunch Menu, and I was excited to see Eggs Benedictine on the list. However, what came to the table puzzled me to no end. On top of a well-buttered muffin lay a slice of ham, and over the ham was a perfectly fried egg, which oozed yolk at the touch of a fork. However, I missed the presence of the Hollandaise Sauce which is supposed to cover the eggs. I was curious, and wanted to question the Chef about it, but by the time the Chef came over, I had forgotten about it completely, drat my strange mind!
The Saltimbocca, generally made with veal, was prepared with Pork here, a slight deviation on traditional theme for the benefit of the Indian palate. The meat was cooked perfectly, the bacon salty and lean, the jus delicately flavoring but not overpowering, with a few scattered blueberries to add a certain something to the meat. For me, this would have stolen the show with its layers of flavors, but I was already seduced by the other meat on offer.
|Herb Roasted Turkey with Berry Glazed Jus|