The proposition at Dishoom is different from your typical Indian restaurant or curry house. It defines itself as a Bombay café inspired by the old Irani cafés that were everywhere in Bombay in the 60s. I have never been to Bombay but all I can say is that Dishoom does a pretty good job at evoking what it stands for. It screams colonialism and the décor is eclectic, colourful with lots of attention to detail. On the table, cold metal ‘glasses’ for your drink and thick plates with writing on them set the scene for a unique experience in a relaxed atmosphere.
Then there is the food. As far as Indian food goes, this is right at the top. It is consistently good, emphasis on both words. And the service is also good, relaxed and friendly. Dishoom remains one of my favourite restaurants in London and if there ever was a top 10 list for me, it would definitely be there.
We had been past the Rose & Crown a few times and kept telling ourselves we should go in one day. From the outside, it is a beautiful well looked-after 17th century building, inviting, quintessentially British countryside village type. Inside, the same. Think low ceilings, chunky furniture, Labradors asleep under tables and locals enjoying a good pint. But more on that later.
As we arrive, a warm and believable smile greets us from behind the bar. The same smile also greets us at the table this time coming from a different person, together with my complimentary glass of Prosecco (it was Mother’s Day and I was going to be duly acknowledged by these warm and amenable strangers that work at the Rose & Crown). A good start, that’s for sure.
In my daily commute, I eat a lot of shop-bought pots of yoghurt with a fruit compote at the bottom and a textured granola of some sort on top. I tend to do that on days I am avoiding a heavy load of carbs, like bread or toast, in the morning. They are usually ok, but never quite make to the ‘delicious’ standard. So I decided to play with some ingredients to make my own version at home and I am really pleased with the result. It is definitely worth a post and I encourage you to try it. As with most of the recipes I post here it was really easy to make and it put a smile on my face when I ate it. Even though it is nearly ‘carb-free’ (or at least bread-free), it is indulgent enough and a really nice way to start to your day. Or you can have it as a dessert, albeit of the healthier kind. Also, don’t restrict yourself to the nuts, seeds or fruit I used here, there are endless combinations and possibilities.
This tortilla is based on a Nigella Lawson recipe from the book Nigella Express. As always, Nigella has managed to come up with something incredibly delicious and make it really easy.
I used to live with a Spanish girl when I came to England and she taught me to make the ‘perfect’ tortilla, but I have to say that version is hard work (though very good). I wanted something simpler that would satisfy my urgent Saturday afternoon tortilla craving and I turned to one of my safest cookbooks for inspiration on how to do something yummy quickly. But as it was the weekend I had plenty of time to add a few steps and ingredients and make my own version of Nigella’s express Spanish omelette.