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Tuesday, 20 October 2015

[Media Invite] Dinner at Chutney Mary Indian Restaurant @ East Coast


719 East Coast Road, Singapore 459069

Tel: 6242 4468


Chutney Mary is an Indian restaurant situated at East Coast Road, serving a wide array of North and South Indian dishes, especially Indian street food and chaats - the latter are either eaten as appetisers or inexpensive snacks between meals. 


Although it is termed as a "fast food restaurant", service was good and there are metal utensils ala dining at a full-fledged restaurant. Okay, think of it as a Swensens - high class fast food restaurant. You could even get wine here.  


This is a media invite attended by representatives from Hungrygowhere and other familiar faces, such as Ivanteh_Runningman.  We started with chaats (aka appetisers). But firstly, I had to have some Mango Lassi (SGD$6.50) - thick and redolent with mango's aroma and sweetness, though the yogurt component was not present at all here.


Foodwise, we had the Pani Puri (SGD$9.00 small / SGD$13.00 medium) - crispy puff semolina pancakes served with condiments and a bowl of chilled condiment beverage. So we just scooped a little of everything to fill up the hollow puffs. I enjoyed the crispiness and coarse texture of the durum wheat paired with spiced mashed potatoes.


The Pakori Chaat (SGD$7.50 small / SGD$12.00 medium) - soft lentil balls, topped with potatoes, ginger strips, yogurt garnishing, tamarind and mint chutney.  Delightful mashed lentil balls were soft but chewy, a little like mochi, tossed in a burst of tangy and sweet flavours; gentle on the palate and then firing it up slowly.


I really enjoyed eating the Dahi Batata Puri (SGD$9.00 small / SGD$13.00 medium) - crispy puff semolinas filled with mashed potatoes, lentil dumplings, chickpeas, sweetened yogurt, tamarind chutney, mint chutney, green chilli and coriander.  We popped the tiny puffs wholly into the mouth and wait for the explosion of flavours, as the fillings cascaded smoothly unto the tongue like a (wet) dream, consisting of sweetness, saltiness, spiciness and a little hint of sourness, all in one bite. It was nearly fun to eat these.


Next, the Vada Pav (SGD$9.00 small / SGD$13.00 medium), which was actually a potato-fritters hamburger with Chef's special garlic sauce. Crispy grilled buns clasping fried potatoes - something new for me, and I was trying not to count the carbo overload here. Anyway, the fritters had a taut exterior with and a mushy center, lightly-flavoured but I guess that was where the special garlic sauce came into play with a full punch.




We also had the Allu Tikki Channa (SGD$7.50 small / SGD$12.00 medium) - pan fried potato patty served in hot and spicy chickpea gravy. It was another sapid dish with a good crunch and suitable tangy touch.


The Non-Vegetarian Kebabs Platter (SGD$19.00 small / SGD$30.00 medium) consisting of murgh malai, chicken tikka, fish tikka, seekh kebab. I liked the chicken tikka but shall go more into detail on it later. The murgh malai (creamy and aromatic marinated chicken) was tender and melty. The fish tikki was good for me too, bearing an uncanny resemblance to our "otah" in taste and texture. As for the lamb seekh kebab, it was a tad rough and dry.


Chicken Tikka (SGD$13.00 small / SGD$20.00 medium) consisted of boneless pieces of chicken marinated in spices and cooked in tandoor oven; it was served with diced mix salad, mint sauce and lime wedge. Flavourful was but one of the traits, because the succulent texture of the spiced chicken pieces was also very commendable, making for a delicious dish that was easy on the palate.



Another memorable favorite of mine was the Mutton Biryani served with Pappadum chips (SGD$16.50), served in a tiny pot that instantly drew out the hungry bugs in us. The basmatic grains were flavoured and cooked to a beautiful golden brown, very tasty and filled with generous cubes of tender mutton bits.  This was unstoppable addiction once we started. Paired with the flaoured pappadum chips adding a touch of crisp, this dish alone sufficed to satisfy the palate and tummy.



We also had an assortment of Naan (SGD$3.00) - plain, butter, garlic as well as a variety of curries and dips. The naan were firm with a beautiful coarse texture that I liked.


The Palak Paneer (SGD$12.00 small / SGD$16.00 medium) was homemade cottage cheese with spinach. It was thick and rich in texture, remaining in solid form if wrapped with naan, but if used as a spread, could easily be smoothened out too.  I did not really enjoy the taste of cottage cheese, but lovers of this cheese would enjoy the combination against the slightly grassy blend of spinach.


The Dhaba Dahl, black (SGD$11.00 small / SGD$15.00 medium) -  black lentils "dum-cooked" and finished with sauteed garlic, coriander and roasted cumin, was a flavourful gravy


Butter Chicken (SGD$13.00 small / SGD$20.00 medium) - boneless chicken tikka simmered in butter and tomato gravy. This had a creamier texture to it, redolent of buttery aroma against the zesty flavour of tomatoes; a good balance so that it was not too butter-creamy.  Eaten with basmatic rice or naan, this is the perfect alternative to those who prefer non-spicy gravy.


My favoritest dip was the Goan Prawn Curry (SGD$14.00 small / SGD$24.00 medium) - coconut based prawn curry. It was creamy, rich, spicy and filled with springy prawns within, making for a fantastic accompaniment for naan or rice!


Finally, time for desserts. We started with the Rasmalai (SGD$8.00), sweet spongy cheese balls in a sweet soup- while I enjoyed the chewy texture, all I remembered about the taste was a strong milky sweetness.


Next, Plain Kulfi Falooda (SGD$8.00) - cool, creamy cubes of sorbet topped with pistachio bits. Imagine biting into frozen cubes of milk.... it was luscious and a cool comfort, the perfect antidote after a heavy and spicy meal.


The Mango Kulfi Falooda (SGD$8.00) was another enticing palate-pleaser for me. Cold, icy cubes of frozen milk redolent with the mango toppings and pistachio bits, instantly sweetening the tongue and leaving us basking in the mango's delightful aroma.


Rasgulla (SGD$8.00) - round, ball-shaped dumplings made of cheese and basking in a clear sweet broth, giving it a firm and spongy texture. I rather enjoyed this dessert purely for its saccharine flavour but thought the cheese had a rather strong taste that seeped past even the extreme sweetness of the broth it has soaked up.


Following that, there was the Gajjar Halwa (SGD$7.00), a sweet dessert pudding made of condensed milk and mashed carrot. The first bite made me think of mashed sweet potatoes literally, and a few more bites even ascertained the earthly, coarse texture was similar as well.


Next up, Mango Rabri (SGD$8.00) - sweetened milk boiled and infused with mango puree, mango cubes and pistachio nuts. It was rich, creamy and soothing all at once, reminding me very much of mango sago with milk.


Finally, Gulab Jamun (SGD$7.00) - solid milk balls with a soft, spongy texture drenched in a sweet syrup. My all-time favorite Indian dessert, I enjoyed the light, chiffony texture of this dessert and the nectarous spoonfuls of syrup complementing its milky flavour. It was the perfect finish to this meal.

Overall, dinner at Chutney Mary was a wonderful discovery, I understand now why it has managed to stay around for over a decade despite its more secluded location - thank you for hosting this meal.  Thank you to Hungrygowhere for the invite, as well.















2 comments:

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