Karl Rock's Blog

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Category: Food, Restaurants & Recipes Page 2 of 7

Sali Chicken Britannia and Co Recipe. Photo © Karl Rock.

Britannia & Co’s Parsi Sali Chicken Recipe (Tried & Tested!)

If you didn’t know, I crowned Britannia & Co. the best restaurant in India. After you eat there, if you’re like me, you’ll be craving to make Sali Chicken at home too.

Thanks to CNN’s interview with Britannia’s owner Boman Kohinoor, we have the real Sali Chicken recipe straight from the man himself. Unfortunately, Mr Kohinoor has not given the actual recipe! I made it, and it tastes close, but it’s missing something. It’s not Britannia & Co. Sali Chicken, but it’s tasty and very healthy anyway!


  • 2 finely chopped green chillies
  • 2 large finely chopped onions
  • A tiny piece of ginger
  • Half a teaspoon of cinnamon powder
  • Half a teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon of garam masala
  • Half a teaspoon of cumin seeds
  • 7 or so curry leaves
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • Salt
  • 1 kilo of boneless chicken thighs, 10 pieces or so, cut into thirds
  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • 3 cups of thin and crispy fried potato sticks (known as Lachha)
Halidrams Aloo Lachha.

This is the closest to plain potato sticks that I could find – Haldiram’s Aloo Lachha. You may have to some searching for plain lachha which is what we want for this recipe.


  1. Make a thick paste out of the garlic, ginger, garam masala, cinnamon and turmeric and set aside.
  2. Drop curry leaves and cumin seeds in a pan with hot oil and stir slightly. After a few seconds, when the seeds start to splutter, add the chopped onions and chillies, let it cook and occasionally stir for about five minutes. Add the spices and stir for a minute or so.
  3. Now bring in the chicken and stir in the pan till it’s well coated with the spices. Pour two cups of water, add salt and bring to boil. Cover with a lid, reduce heat and let the chicken cook for half an hour.
  4. Uncover the dish and let it simmer in low flame for another thirty minutes until the chicken is soft and tender.
  5. In a deep plate, place the chicken and arrange a nice, thick layer of potato sticks around the edges or on top. Serve piping hot with juicy lime wedges and onion.
Sali Chicken Britannia and Co Recipe. Photo © Karl Rock.

Homemade Sali Chicken but something’s not quite right. It should be browner in colour. It still tatsted great anyway. Photo © Karl Rock.

Behind the Scenes at a Muslim Wedding in India [Video]. Photo © Karl Rock.

An Inside Look at a Muslim Wedding in India [Exclusive Video]

While in Hyderabad, I went behind the scenes at my friend’s wedding to give you an inside look at a Muslim wedding.

Experience the marriage contract ceremony, after party, and watch the cooks in action backstage as they prepare a royal feast!

If you’re like me and love food and want to see more of the kitchen, check out this extended clip featuring all the food being made out the back of the reception venue.

How to Make Masala Chai like a Real Chaiwala. Photo by Julia Maudlin (https://flic.kr/p/rX1d3r)

How to Make Masala Chai like a Real Chaiwala

If you want to make masala chai exactly how a Chaiwala does on the streets of New Delhi then there’s quite a big difference to my simple Simple Masala Chai (Indian Milk Tea) Recipe. I prefer the simple recipe because it uses 100% milk, this method uses a 50% water/milk split as milk is expensive. Try both for yourself and decide!

Masala Chai. Photo by Kara Murphy.

Masala Chai. Photo by Kara Murphy.

Ingredients (Serves: 1)

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 teaspoon locally ground Chai Masala (or Everest’s Tea Masala).
  • 3/4 cup full cream or single toned milk.
  • 1 teaspoon of Tata Gold Tea or Taj Mahal Tea (these black teas are the most commonly used in India and available from Indian grocery stores).
  • 2 heaped teaspoons of white sugar.


  1. Add the water and chai masala to a pot and bring to a light boil.
    1. For Ginger Masala Chai: add three 1-inch long slices of fresh ginger and boil for 3 minutes. The water will turn yellow.
  2. Add the tea and boil for 2 minutes, the water will turn dark red.
  3. Add milk and lower the heat and let simmer for 2 minutes. It should be looking dark brown now.
  4. Add sugar and stir.
  5. Bring to the boil so the liquid starts climbing up the pan, then turn down heat and let simmer. Do this 3 times. Even more colour should be coming out of the tea.
  6. Strain into a teacup and enjoy!
Chaiwala in Pushkar, Rajasthan. Photo by Arian Zwegers (https://flic.kr/p/ayft4J)

Chaiwala in Pushkar, Rajasthan. Photo by Arian Zwegers

Now you can start your roadside chai stall too!

The Best Restaurants in Unappetising Paharganj Delhi. Photo by Prateek Rungta (https://flic.kr/p/a6CCCZ).

Where to Eat in Unappetising Paharganj, Delhi

The best way to describe Pahargunj is “hell on earth.” Along with the rest of Old Delhi, it’s the worst place you can possibly stay in India. It features drug addicts shooting up on the side of the road, prostitution, thieves, scammers, rats, and every other nasty you can imagine.

Such a negative description is honest, but during my latest stay in Paharganj, I’ve really made an effort to try and find some beauty in this place.

I went out looking for the best food, and on those walks, I made a point to stay off the main road and take the back streets. The backstreets, away from the hawkers, traffic jams, and madness is where I found the real Paharganj.

While you make your way to these restaurants make an effort to take the back streets. You’ll see kids doing their homework, young men working out in outdoor gyms hidden from the main road, kids going to school, the rear kitchens of the restaurants on the main street, and so much more. Paharganj has beauty if you seek it.

Darbar – $

Outside Darbar Restaurant, Paharganj. Photo by Darbar.

This is the tastiest and cleanest place I’ve found to eat in Paharganj. I surprisingly never see tourists eating there though, it’s usually just filled with Indian businessmen.

Darbar is perfect for breakfast. They serve all the traditional Delhi dishes such as Chole Bhature and Aloo Paratha. All for very reasonable prices considering the cleanliness of this restaurant.

Flavours – $

When I stayed in Paharganj for a month straight once, Flavours was my morning go to. I’d order two aloo paratha, chai, and 2 boiled eggs. They serve authentic and delicious food but just check their cleanliness is up to your standards first. I never had an issue with the food, but more weary travellers may be put off by the roadside kitchen setup (although they have an indoor dining area).

Sita Ram Diwan Chand – $

Chole Bhature

Sita Ram Diwan Chand has achieved legendary status across Delhi as the best place to eat the Delhi breakfast staple Chole Bhature (chickpea curry and deep fried bread). While it’s definitely not the best Chole Bhature in Delhi, it’s certainly decent and a good place to eat in Paharganj. I’ve written previously about where the tastiest and most authentic Chole Bhature is in Delhi.

Sam’s Cafe – $$

Pizza from Sams Cafe, Paharganj. Photo by Zomato.

Sam’s Cafe is a favourite rooftop hangout above the Vivek Hotel in the main bazaar. The food here is a little overpriced and bland (that tends to be the case when a restaurant has a menu that serves every cuisine possible), but the rooftop setting is nicely lit up at night.

Re Cafe – $$

Situated below the bright white and yellow Bloomrooms hotel, Re Cafe serves up good continental and Indian food. They serve fish too which is harder to find in Delhi, being so far from the sea (and a reason I don’t eat it often here). It’s also a good choice for breakfast, with their egg paratha being a standout.

Al-Sameer – $$

I’d been walking past Al-Sameer every time I’d come to Paharganj. It never looked that clean to me, but you can see their chef cooking their Mughal dishes as you walk past. Every time I’d look at what he was cooking, and every time it looked amazing.

So I finally gave Al-Sameer try. Turns out it was clean enough and the food was as it looks – traditional tasty Mughal food. Forget about eating vegetarian here, they specialise in non-vegetarian.

Make your own food

Healthy breakfast food isn’t Paharganj’s speciality. After too many days eating oily Indian food, it tends to make you feel very bloated. That’s when it’s time to go back to basics. In my case, I visit the Mother Dairy store and pick up yoghurt and plain chaach (unsweetened yoghurt drink) and have that with muesli which can be found at Patanjali stores and larger grocery stores.

The Bad

Rituraj: bland and overpriced and there was an insect baked into my naan bread!

Duck Haleem. Photo by Chris Pople (https://flic.kr/p/nZrwSU).

Where to Find Haleem in Hyderabad All Year Round

Whenever I go to Hyderabad, there are two things I must eat: Biryani and Haleem. Good Biryani is easy enough to get around India. But Haleem isn’t it.

Haleem is a dish mainly served in cities with large Muslim populations, like Hyderabad, during Ramadan (a Muslim time of fasting). The reason being that its preparation is very laborious. It takes hours of stirring to break down the mutton to produce this thick meaty soup. Therefore it’s reserved for special occasions.

Now you’re probably thinking, as I was when I first set eyes on it, that this looks like slop, yuk! It looks unappetising, yes. But once you taste it I guarantee you’ll be hooked. I can’t really describe the flavours, so just imagine a thick mutton curry soup. It’s not hot spicy, but more of an intense mutton flavour.

The problem is, I’m never in Hyderabad during Ramadan. So I made some calls while in Hyderabad this time and found where I can find this delicacy year round!

1. The Park Hotel’s Aish

Haleem at The Park's Aish Restaurant, Hyderabad. Photo © Karl Rock.

Haleem at The Park’s Aish Restaurant, Hyderabad. Photo © Karl Rock.

Aish serves you Hyderabadi Haleem like you’re a king. The price reflects it too at a crazy 850 (it’s around ₹150 on the streets during Ramadan). But it’s worth it providing you’re not craving it daily like me.

It could be a little spicier. But beggars can’t be choosers.

Haleem with all the toppings at The Park's Aish Restaurant, Hyderabad. Photo © Karl Rock.

Haleem with all the toppings at The Park’s Aish Restaurant, Hyderabad. Photo © Karl Rock.

2. Haleem365

Haleem365 is an online home delivery service that sells a family size Mutton Haleem for 550. The pictures on their site look great, but I have not tried them yet so I can’t comment on the taste – leave a comment if you have!

There you go, two places to enjoy Haleem all year round in Hyderabad!

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