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Food @ Trivandrum

Cordon Bleu Charcoal Restaurant – Chicken Yogurt Tikka, Chicken Fried Rice, Prawns Roast

Back at Cordon Bleu Charcoal Restaurant again but this time for dinner on my way back home from work… It has been a while since my last visit to the place too… I must say, the place looks quite sparkly at night with the place so well lit… I arrived at a time they were just about to open after their evening break making me the first customer for the dinner service ๐Ÿ™‚

This time, the owner recommended I try two of the newly introduced items from the menu which is the Chicken Yogurt Tikka from their starters menu and the Prawns Roast from their recently started Naadan menu… So, I went for their regular Chicken Fried Rice this time to go with them (was feeling very hungry cause I didn’t have lunch) and also their Chicken Clear Soup as the starter… However, since I was feeling very thirsty and since the weather was hot (now that I think about it, maybe I should’ve avoided the soup this time ๐Ÿ˜› ), I needed a drink asap and so, asked for their Mint Cooler and asked them to let me have that first… They all arrived as can be seen in the pics below…

So, as requested, the first item to arrive was the Mint Cooler from their Crushers list… As can be understood from the pic, it is a drink made using fresh Mint leaves and as soon as the waiter served the glass, I could feel the fragrance of the Mint…

To be frank, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the similar if not the same drink I have had from Monsoon Days which was the restaurant that used to be here before Cordon Bleu took over… But still, personally, I would rate this as one of the most refreshing drinks I have ever had cause of the incredible flavour of fresh Mint with just the right amount of sweetness to mask that little bitterness from the Mint and of-course the use of crushed ice being the crusher makes this one of the best drinks one can have to beat the heat… I ended up loving this so much that I asked for one more at the end of my meal… ๐Ÿ™‚

As I was enjoying my Mint Cooler, the waiter brought over the one item I ended up regretting to have ordered and I don’t mean that in any negative way with regards to the item… Its just that the weather was so hot and I was just beginning to cool down thanks to that Mint Cooler and here came the piping hot Chicken Clear Soup… Clearly a mistake on my part, wasn’t it?? Well, I sure found that out the hard way after I took the pics below ๐Ÿ™‚

Coming to the tase, the soup was not bad… The Chicken was cooked perfectly and the vegetables ie, Cabbage, Baby Corn, Carrots, Capsicums, Green Beans and Spring Onions were indeed fresh and crunchy and soup was seasoned well too… There was only one problem and it was the fact that I could taste Vinegar in it and it seemed to overpower the taste of the broth completely… I think if the Vinegar was avoided, this soup would’ve been awesome to have on a rainy day…

As I was done with the soup, the rest of the items from my order, all arrived together… So, lets talk about them one by one and start with the recommended item from the starter menu called Chicken Yogurt Tikka which arrived as can be seen in the pics below… For those who may be unaware, Chicken Tikkas are basically bite sized pieces of Chicken marinated in spices and then baked using a skewer in an oven which is traditionally, the Tandoor oven and hence comes under whats knows as the umbrella of Tandoori Food… These are typically served as a starter as well as a side dish to Roti, Naan and/or Rice… There are different versions of Chicken Tikka based on the ingredients used for the marination…

Coming to the taste, this particular one, as the name suggests, appears to let the Yogurt take the lead… Yogurt is typically a common ingredient for marinating Chicken (and most meats as it has a tenderising effect) pretty much all over India with few exceptions, but usually when used, its remains in the background as just the base or binder while the spices added takes over the flavour profile… Here, the spices and herbs (mostly, pepper, ginger and garlic is what I could taste) used felt subtle so that the flavour of the Yogurt actually came thru… It reminded me of the Chicken / Paneer Shashlik that I used to get back when I was living in Mumbai though not as spicy as that… The extra Yogurt usage is quite evident in how the Chicken pieces were incredibly tender and juicy from being cooked just right… Overall, I found myself loving this and I felt that accompanying salad of sorts made with chopped raw Cabbage wasn’t really necessary…

Next, lets talk about the other recommended item, which was the Prawns Roast from the Naadan Menu… Though Cordon Blue’s menu having been printed in advance, had been showing the Naadan menu, they hadn’t started serving the dishes whenever I visited earlier and so this is the first time I got to try an item from that menu and its no secret that I love Prawns as much as I love Chicken and so obviously when the owner suggested that I try their new Prawns Roast, I couldn’t resist… It arrived as can be seen in the pics below and I think its the best looking Prawns Roast I have had served so far… Of-course, this doesn’t have the glamour of say having Jumbo / Tiger Prawns in it, but as far as regular Prawns Curries go, I think this one definitely takes the cake…

Now coming to the taste, first of all, I felt that the prawns were cooked perfectly and there was quite a generous quantity of prawns in the dish considering its price… I loved the taste of the Masala which felt incredibly rich and flavourful having the sweetness and sourness from the Tomato very well balanced with the spices and herbs used… Texture wise this is similar to the kind of Masala we see in typical Egg Roast but a bit more richer and velvetier thanks to the Tomatoes and the oil used I guess… Other than the Tomato and caramelised Onions, I could taste the Garlic and Ginger that was used along with Mustard Seeds, Coriander and Green Chillies and I felt the Garam Masala used was one of the best tasting ones I have had so far that appeared to work perfectly well with the Prawns that I suggested that they try using the same recipe with Fish as well… All the flavours felt quite perfectly balanced making it a incredibly rich and savoury curry that can be had with Rice or any of the breads like Porotta, Chapati, etc… Also, if you ask me, I would highly recommend squeezing that lime all over the dish for that extra kick that works great with the Prawns…

Last but not the least was the Chicken Fried Rice that I got to have the Prawns Roast… The combination of Chicken and Prawns are one of those rare anomalies that somehow always works and quite often I tend to mix the two ie, getting Prawns Rice (Fried Rice or Biriyani) with Chicken Curry or Fry and vice versa… So, here since it was a Prawns Curry, I went for the Chicken Fried Rice which was served as can be seen in the pics below…

Coming to the taste, well this was the typical Hakka style clean tasting fried rice like the one I have had in many of the other places, where the seasoning was subtle and the taste of each ingredient could be felt individually… The rice and the chicken were cooked and seasoned just right with salt and pepper and the vegetables namely, the carrots, cabbage, green beans and spring onion were all tasting fresh and were crunchy… Ginger and Garlic could also be felt and a tiny bit of Soy Sauce also appeared to have been added… Overall, I felt that its a fine Fried Rice to have on its own or with a curry and I felt that it worked well with the Prawns Roast that I mentioned above…

Overall, I felt that it was a fine meal… Other than the minor issue with the soup, I ended up liking everything I had and I am hoping to try more from their menu when I visit again and I do intend to do so very soon especially for that Prawns Roast… Hopefully soon.. ๐Ÿ™‚

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