Food : Trivandrum Rating : 3/5 Stars

Imperial Kitchen – Chicken Manchow Soup, Barbeque Bites, Paprika rubbed Steak and Bambaiyya Falooda

Back at Imperial Kitchen, Trivandrum once again and this time explored the menu even further usual… Thinks to the restaurant’s website having their full menu, which I discovered recently, I did plan ahead on what all I should get this time… So, this time, my order consisted of the Chicken Manchow Soup, which is one of my favourite soups to have, especially when having cold or a sore throat, followed by a starter called Flakey BBQ Chicken Bites and then for mains, I went for the Paprika rubbed Chicken and then finally for dessert, what they call the Imperial Falooda…

The Chicken Manchow soup is usually a very spicy soup that has an overload of ginger and black pepper and in some places even chilly oil on top, then comes with some vegetables and protein (chicken or seafood or both depending on where you get it from) and then topped with some crispy fried noodles… Some places make the soup to be thick and filling whereas other places go for the lite approach where they don’t thicken it at all… However, the version here that I got was the thick one, clearly thickened using corn starch… Also, the soup came loaded with a lot of vegetables and shreds of chicken in it and as you can see from the pic, there is quite a generous portion of the fried noodles in it as well…

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So, considering how I had more food coming, I skipped most of those noodles, which made things not that heavy… However, what surprised me was the taste… This is because unlike the other places from where I have had the manchow soup, this one was mildly spiced… The flavour profile of pepper, ginger, garlic, green onions, coriander and some soy was definitely there but they managed to keep the spice level to a mild level and I liked it very much… I am also guessing from the taste that they didn’t add any vinegar to it, which to me is really good cause I don’t like when its sourness gets felt…

As I was getting done with the soup, the starter arrived, which is the Flakey BBQ Chicken Bites as they call it… Its basically a portion of bite sized boneless strips of chicken that appears to have been dipped in corn flour batter and fried and then cooked in their special barbecue sauce and then garnished with some chopped parseley and served with some french fries to the side…

Coming to how this tasted, first off, the french fries were absolutely perfect, as in perfect cooking where each chip had a crispy outer layer and was soft inside… The same was lightly seasoned with just enough salt to let you enjoy it with the chicken… Now coming to the chicken, unfortunately I found the chicken to be much tougher to chew than what I expected… I mean, to me, it felt to be almost dry and chewy to the point where I couldn’t finish it because towards the end my jaws began to hurt… 😦 Anyways, what I really loved about this is their special barbecue sauce which to be frank is my favourite version of the barbecue sauce so far… Perfect balance of sweetness and spiciness… I guess it was because of this sauce that I managed to eat almost 3/4th of it 🙂

Once I was done with the starter, the waiter, after asking my permission brought over the main course, which is called Paprika rubbed Chicken… This is basically a portion of chicken steak, grilled with a paprika based rub, topped with what felt like a paprika and rosemary infused barbecue sauce and some chopped parsely and served along with some grilled vegetables like zuccini, squash, carrots, beans, mushrooms, cauliflower and eggplant (there was also one more… Looked like baby potatoes but inside it had the texture and taste like a cross between zuccini and eggplant… Not sure of its name)… The plate also appeared to have been dressed with some balsamic vinegar if I am not mistaken…

The portion served to me came with two pieces of chicken breast grilled as shown in the pics… Altogether a great dish in my opinion, although once again, I wish the chicken were a bit more juicier and tender… The paprika and rosemary really did dominate the taste of everything on the plate and as for the grilled vegetables, well, they are vegetables 🙂 but the combination worked quite well and so, this is a dish I’ll probably get again on a future visit to the place…

Once I was done with the main course, the dessert arrived… When I saw in the menu that the falooda was a bambaiyya special, having lived in Mumbai for quite some time, I had a completely different falooda in my mind… This is because, atleast from what I have seen during my days in mumbai, when you ask for falooda in most places, what you get is one or two slices of kulfi topped with some rose syrup infused semolina and khus khus and maybe some mixed nuts in grated form to top… Another version I have seen is basically the same served in a tall glass but instead of kulfi, you get a rose flavoured chilled thick milk and then as an option depending on where you get it it from, you’ll get a scoop of vanilla ice cream as a topping to it…

I have seen the particular version that was served to me as shown in the pics but the place I got it from (in Vikhroli East) called it by the name “Gadbad” and it was exactly as how this was… Butterscotch icecream at the bottom, strawberry icecream at the top, loaded with the rose infused vermicelli, some rose flavoured milk and a lot of freshly cut fruits like banana, pineapple, apple, grapes and also a lot of nuts, especially cashew nuts and what we call tutti frutti and then ofcourse topped with a cherry on top 🙂 Not only did this look exactly (ofcourse this was a lot smaller in size) like the gadbad one I had from Mumbai, it even tasted exactly the same… So, once again a big thanks to whoever made this at Imperial Kitchen for the pleasant trip down memory lane… Safe to say, I’ll be getting it during my next visit as well… 🙂 😀

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