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So millets are back in the game these days as far as food trends go. We seem to have come full circle and realized the vast amount of goodness our indigenous grains hold. Millets have long since been a part of the staple diet for most people across the country. It was only with the processing of grains that polished rice and the like took over pantry shelves. With these grains now making a comeback, Bangalore now has quite a few interesting places that serve up some great millet dishes.
Of course, you may think that if its millets, it has to be done the traditional way – that may be one way to do it, but at Vaathsalya Café, the menu sees a mixing and mixing and matching of old recipes with new. A family run restaurant, the menu has been crafted by the matriarch of the family, well versed in disguising healthy food to make it more palatable to her children when they were young. The menu looks rather modern but if very influenced by the food of North Karnataka. The Millet Malts, Millet Buttermilk and the millet based snacks should not be missed. And definitely on the cards must the Spiced Ragi Pop – a very desi rendition of popcorn!
When this restaurant first opened its doors in Chennai, little was its success anticipated. Speak to the mind behind this restaurant and you will hear of how it is the millennials who frequent the café, and who then bring their parents along to sample the fare. The lunch thalis here are the most popular with most of the dishes served being made of millets. Every savoury rice preparation makes an appearance but with Kodo millet as the base. Muddes of Ragi and Bajra are served up and the dish to look forward to most is the black rice halwa! The speciality here is the Tumkur style Thatte Idli made of Kodo millet.
So far a lunch only place with the promise of breakfast being started up soon enough, Kaulige Millet Corner has a simple approach to its lunch menu – a millet, in place of rice, preparation – think Puliogare, Bisi Bele Bath, Pulao, Capsicum and Pongal; Jowar or Ragi Roti, a millet based dessert, salad and a range of vegetable based side dishes. The meals are always light on the tummy. The little restaurant also serves up a health drink that is a range of millet powders that simply need to be mixed into buttermilk and had. The live dosa and paddu counters are also quite popular. The restaurant offers a lunch dabba service for those in and around MG Road as well.
Ruth Dsouza Prabhu has been a media professional for 18 years now, across multiple platforms. As a passionate F&B writer, she has interacted personally with internationally renowned names such as Marco Pierre White, Janice Wong, Chef Vivek Singh, Chef Vikas Khanna, Madhur Jaffrey, the late Tarla Dalal and many others for her stories. A highlight has been personal interviews with all three of the celebrity judges on Masterchef Australia. She is on several jury panels of food and beverage awards, is sought after for opinions in the field by publications and has her work published in well-known names such as The Hindu, Firstpost, HuffPost India, Condé Nast Traveller, NatGeo Traveller among many others.