I readily agreed to review the Goan Food Fest along with a friend last week at the Hyatt, Bangalore for two reasons; Vegetarian Goan food is a challenge, and I wanted an afternoon of suseg – meaning relaxation in Portuguese.
The outdoor terrace seating facing a water body, palm trees, a beach shack-like grill and catchy Goan/Konkan music created the perfect setting on a cloudy/windy Bangalore day.
Chef Edrige Vaz from Park Hyatt, Goa was at the helm of the Goan spread. There was a dinner buffet with a variety of seafood and an a la carte menu for lunch. For us, a special three course menu was served by the Chef.
For vegetarian starters, there was home style crisp vegetable cutlet, a cheesy croquet and mushrooms in spicy peri peri masala. The cutlet and croquet were decent – nothing Goan though. The mushrooms however, were delightfully spicy and cooked right.
Moving on, for the main course we were served two varieties of rice and curries. Regular white rice and the boiled Goan rice. The yellow pumpkin curry was slightly sweet, with a tempering of mustard seeds, curry leaves and onions in thin coconut milk gravy garnished with a generous helping of fresh grated coconut – relished the wholesome and delicate flavour along with Gaon rice. The mixed vegetables in red curry – Tarkarachem Hoomand, had an over dose of masala and was rather pungent.
The dessert platter included three types; Bebinca - the traditional layered pudding, Dodol – a halwa kind of sweet made of rice flour, black jaggery and coconut milk that I enjoyed and a payasam/kheer made of sago and channa daal. The kheer could have cooked a little more and a scoop of vanilla ice cream with the bebinca would have completed the dessert.
Summing it up, it was a decent experience for vegetarian costal cuisine, although the menu was limited.