Dinner: Chandigarh

After my talk (which itself followed a large lunch prepared by a very good Institute cook), we went out to a Pashtun restaurant for dinner: the food of the “northwest frontier.” This is a meaty and bread-y cuisine. Here are our dishes: Appetizer 1: Stuffed mushrooms:

Appetizer 1: Stuffed mushrooms with sauce (don’t ask me what it was):

Appetizer 2: Grilled chicken seekh kebab:

Appetizer three: Mutton seekh kabob:

Chicken in sauce (all sopped up with garlic naan):

Mutton in sauce:

Aloo (potato) curry:

Me in my fancy room at the Marriott:


  1. Posted December 19, 2017 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    Yum! Today this was before lunch — now I am REALLY hungry! πŸ™‚

  2. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted December 19, 2017 at 11:34 am | Permalink


    STOP IT…

    ^^^^ just kidding – these are tantalizing posts…

  3. Simon Hayward
    Posted December 19, 2017 at 11:42 am | Permalink

    Apparently, I now have to eat at the local Indian lunch buffet. The food there looks sooo good.

  4. Posted December 19, 2017 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    Have to have a dosa for lunch now.

  5. Posted December 19, 2017 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    They seem to like raw onion.

  6. nicky
    Posted December 19, 2017 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    When I was in Pashtun tribal area’s the daily dish was ‘pilaw’ (rice with raisins) with pieces of sheep fat. Not bad at all, but after a few weeks one longs for the dishes like the ones shown. Well, even just like that, looks succulent!

  7. Posted December 19, 2017 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    Those dishes are devastating. Aloo curry. My absolute favorite.

  8. Graham Head
    Posted December 19, 2017 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    I think I may be coming to hate this website. Just a little bit.

  9. Marlene Zuk
    Posted December 19, 2017 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    Am I the only one who wants to know how the talk went? (Though the food is great to see, too.)

    • nicky
      Posted December 19, 2017 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      apparently so πŸ™‚

    • Posted December 19, 2017 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

      two talks and I think they both went well judging by the questions and discussion,but of course one never knows. I’m giving four separate talks on this trip.

  10. Vaal
    Posted December 19, 2017 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    Looks wonderful!


  11. Mark R.
    Posted December 19, 2017 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    From these mouth-watering photos, I’d have to conclude the cuisine is meaty, bread-y and purple onion-y.

    Are the onions on the sweet side or the hot side?

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted December 19, 2017 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

      @Mark R. I’ve not been to India – this is personal experience of shopping in Small Heath & Sparkbrook in Birmingham, UK where I grew up. Around there it’s approx a 70% population of Pakistani or Bengladeshi heritage – the whole area is influenced by the top 1/4 of the Indian subcontinent: sari shops, 22 carat Indian gold ‘jewellers’ [banks really], sweet shops, curry houses, food markets etc

      They don’t use lettuce or other green leaves in salads. The salad staples are red onion, tomato & cucumber with households buying red onions by the huge sack for salads, chutneys & cooking. The great thing about onions is in their skins they will keep until the next harvest – the reds [I’m told] keep better than other onion varieties & they are grown in huge amounts back home.

      Red onions are fairly pungent to the nose, but mild & sweetish to the tongue & can be eaten raw unlike western white onions [back home there’s many varieties of onion but the red is the most flexible usage] – I have seen chopped red salad onion rings soaked in water for half an hour to reduce pungency/bitterness, but usually unnecessary

      My favourite red onion thing is diced red onion, marinaded for 30 mins in tomato paste, chopped toms, malt vinegar [or lemon juice] & chilli powder [or similar] for an hour. Makes a lovely side dish & clears the palate. There’s lots of variations on this [addition of mustard seeds or mint leaves say] from Tunisia, Lebanon, Israel, Iran & India.

      Without raw red onion, Indian cuisine would be hobbled – it balances all those savoury dishes nicely

    • Karan
      Posted December 20, 2017 at 10:34 am | Permalink

      I wouldn’t say the onions are sweeter but they are not as sharp as onions we get in the US. A lot of times the onions are also pickled which also cuts down on the sharpness. In one of the pictures you can see a plate with only two small onions on it, those onions are quite possibly pickled. The sliced onions tend not to be pickled.

  12. Mike
    Posted December 20, 2017 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    One Starter alone would do for me.lol

  13. Hempenstein
    Posted December 20, 2017 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    Any encounters with Rooh Afza yet? Particularly curious about Falooda, which is apparently made with it.

  14. Posted December 20, 2017 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Awesome potato curry! I’ve really got to learn how to make that.

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