Three heavy snacks in as many days is a bit of an indulgence for us. We had an excuse. It was The Family’s birthday, and we spent a night in a nice hotel. Unfortunately we went to sleep a little early, and within minutes of falling into deep sleep we were woken up by a bell. Groggily I opened the door, and it was room service with a smile. “Happy birthday, Ma’am,” the man said, ignoring me completely. He placed a platter on a table, whisked away the dome, and said “Compliments of the house, ma’am.” Nice gesture, but we decided to wait till the morning to taste it. The light foam of whipped cream incorporated fresh strawberries. The alternate layers of a light cake and the same cream melted in our mouths. The bakery at the hotel was justly well known.
After checking in late that afternoon, we had sat on the terrace with a view and had a plate of mixed pakodas to accompany our drinks. Crisp and hot, the pakodas were made of onions, potato, and a couple of chilis. The accompanying coriander chutney was fragrant and had a nice bite of chili. It was good, but pretty heavy. Later The Family said “Good that we don’t have this very often.”
The previous day I’d roasted these small potatoes for dinner. I’ve been trying many different flavours this year, but the one I tried that day was oil from a chili pickle mixed with chat masala and amchur. Our guests liked it. One of them remarked on the combination of crisp crust and soft interior. I was very happy to hear that, because I’ve been tweaking the temperatures and times to get that combination of textures right. I thought the sharp and sour taste goes well with the mild starchy interior of the potato.