The Imperfect Post

The Gourmet House – First Visit

I have been hearing about The Gourmet House for quite some time by now including thru friends who have been there, but unfortunately I never got the chance to check it out  myself until now… The place located is located at Pattom just as you turn from the main junction toward Marappaalam…

As always I dropped by for lunch and even though at the time I was the only customer they had, very soon a few more tables became occupies… 🙂 The place indeed looked cozy although not sure about the industrial vent pipes being visible like that as I felt if that had been concealed, the ambience would’ve looked better… Anyways I guess considering it been painted in the same color as the ceiling, it may not be that prominently visible during dinner hours… rt?? 🙂

Now coming to the menu, this really surprised me cause their menu had pretty much most of the things I had been wanting to try after seeing the food network shows showing south east asian cuisine… So, even though I wanted to try pretty much the entire menu, this time, I went with their Tom Kha Chicken Soup, Summer Rolls Prawns, Nasi Goreng Prawns and Korean Chilli Chicken and also went for their Dates and Avocado Smoothie to drink…

So, the first to arrive was the Tom Kha soup of which I chose the version with Chicken… According to the menu, this is a thai soup thats flavoured with Coconut Milk and Lemon Grass… It arrived as shown in the pics below…

First of all, flavour wise this kind of reminded me of the Thai Red Curry… But with the spice level of the Yellow Curry… The dominating flavours is that of the Coconut Milk and the Lemon Grass… Along with them, the flavours of the Chicken, Carrots, Green Breans, Coriander Leaves, Mushrooms and Broccoli were very much present… Altogether a really nice and rich soup… The only thing I wish is that it was a bit less salty but thats just me…

Next up is the Summer Rolls… According to the menu, these are Vietnamese fresh Rice Paper rolls serves with Sweet Chilli and Vinegar dip… They have versions having, just vegetables, chicken, prawns and beef… I went for the Prawn version… It came as shown in the pics below looking essentially like a version of Gỏi cuốn but without the pork ie, just the chilled shrimp/prawns… 🙂

First of all, although I have heard about this a lot, this is the very first time I could try these rolls… So, I really can’t judge the authenticity of it… However, I found this quite refreshing… The whole thing was served chilled… The vegetables and shrimp inside seemed fresh… The shrimp was indeed cooked perfectly and very lightly seasoned with salt… The rice paper also felt ever so slightly seasoned with salt too… The vegetables also felt fresh and crunchy… The lettuce is indeed the star of this show… The sweet chiili dip as well as the chilli vinegar dips felt nice with the rolls… Both the dips were not spicy at all… You just get the flavour of the chillies without the heat… The thing to note here, is that not even a speck of fat is used and the rice paper is very thin and so this has to be the most healthiest starter available in restaurants here in Trivandrum…

Next up is the main course of which lets first take the look at the Nasi Goreng… Nasi Goreng is the quintessential ambassador of the Indonesian cuisine… Its basically a fried rice made with vegetables and protein (meat/seafood) and is traditionally served with egg, krupuk (a traditional cracker made with shrimp paste) and pickles… The fried rice is usually flavoured with sweet soy sauce, shrimp paste, tamarind and chilli along with shallots, green onions, ginger, garlic, etc… Here the Nasi Goreng is served with a Fried Egg on top, Prawn Crackers and what appears to be a Satay made with a couple of prawns and a salad…

First of all, its not really a satay there… Seems they have used a version of sambal sauce (chilly sauce/paste made with shrimp paste and other secondary ingredients like shallots, ginger, garlic, palm sugar, etc making it both spicy and sweet) and grilled it in that skewer… The fried rice seemed to have been made using the same sauce but it had additional flavours of the ingredients namely the prawns, carrots, green onions, baby corn, green beans, cabbage and bok choy as well… I don’t think I felt the taste of tamarind in this at all… That being said, I really liked this fried rice but based on what I know, I do wonder if this is authentic but it doesn’t matter cause in the end, the product does indeed taste good… I can go as far to say that this is definitely one of the very best fried rice options in Trivandrum right now… The prawn crackers was great and the perfectly cooked egg with that amazing runny yolk is so wonderful when mixed with the rice… To those who haven’t tried this, one tip I can give is to try and use the prawn crackers as your spoon and fill it with rice and egg with a couple of pieces from the salad and eat it as a mouth full… 😀 😛 Check it out 🙂

Along with the Nasi Goreng, I had also ordered for their Korean Style Chilli and opted for the Chicken version… They do have a beef and prawns versions too… According to the menu, its is tender cooked meat in traditional Korean spiced sauce… Normally this comes with a gravy and I opted for the dry version as the fried rice I went for doesn’t really need a gravy… Anyways, it came as shown in the pics below…

So, even though this tends to look like our indo-chinese chilli chicken, it sure doesn’t taste like the same… It is indeed spicy as the entire sauce is caked with Chilli flakes, ginger, garlic, shallots and green onions… Even though spicy, there is a slight sweet component to this… The flavour of the chillies however is a bit different that what we get here… It kind of felt like Siracha but not quite that as well… So, I am guessing at this point that it might be Korean chillies… A sweetener is definitely there which could be palm sugar or honey… This also had onions and bell peppers and also some chives on top as garnish… Coming to the chicken, I must say one thing… The cooking of the Chicken was absolutely perfect, with the pieces being so soft and juicy that it did indeed melt in my mouth… This is definitely a must try…

Now last but not least, lets talk about the drink… As recommended by the waiter, I went for their Dates & Avocado Smoothie… It arrived as shown in the pics below…

This smoothie was fine… A thick smoothie made with fresh Avocado and dates… It was not sweetened much… I prefer mild levels of sweetness anyways and so, felt fine… Nothing much to say here…

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So, altogether it was a fine meal that I had from The Gourmet House… I would definitely recommend to those who are yet to try the place to do so asap… Personally, I am hoping to go back there to try more from their menu soon…

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