THAAL

Food that has travelled through many roads and countries, far and wide and with recipes passed down from hundreds of year that finally make their way to your plate at Thaal. The restaurant has been open for a little over half a year now and has been dishing up some delicious Bohra dishes. The focus at Thaal has always been about creating an unforgettable and authentic experience while delivering food of the highest quality made with natural and fresh ingredients. The owner at Thaal,Rumana Roowala, truly made my experience at Thaal an unforgettable one. Right from explaining and talking us through every dish to telling us about the roots of the Bohra cuisine and culture, it was almost like she took us on a journey and I’m really happy to say that it’s been quite a while that I’ve enjoyed a meal like this. Bohra cuisine has a lot of middle-eastern and Arabic influences and the Bohras have over time always been on the move. Hence, their food has picked up tons of influences from places like Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan and more. There is also quite a big Bohra community across India especially in places like Gujrat, Maharashtra and Rajasthan.

Thaal is located by the riverside in Reis Magos where you can enjoy your meal in a beautiful setting with very well priced food with plenty of non veg and veg options, some great cocktails and fantasticservice. The great thing about Thaal is virtually everything is homemade and made from scratch andis fresh including the masalas that go into the dishes are freshly prepared at home. They also treatfood with a lot of love and passion and ensure that nothing is wasted. The main attraction at Thaal is the big thaal meal that has to be shared between 4-8 people but I’ll talk about that at the end and will first start off with a few of the dishes from the menu.Firstly, every meal in Bohra cuisine starts of with a dessert as these guys really do love their sweettreats. So I began my meal with the Sodannu which is a very simple and light dish that features fragrant rice, ghee, sugar and dry fruits. This was then followed by some classic starters like the Kheema Samosas and the Chicken Cutlets. The juicy chicken cutlets fried in egg and hot and crispy samosas with beautifully marinated minced mutton was a wonderful start to a wonder meal and
priced at just Rs.150/- and Rs.180, I already got the impression that this would prove to be a very valuable meal.

                                      

For mains I firstly started with Mutton Kheema as I’m a sucker for freshly prepared mutton and the samosas were enough to entice me to go for the whole dish. This can be served with the Goan Pao or Poi . Now I don’t unnecessarily compliment food too much but I can easily say without doubt that this was the best Mutton Kheema I’ve eaten at a restaurant in Goa. Packed with flavour, melt in mouth consistency and super fresh. Getting good mutton in itself is a challenge in Goa, let alone getting well prepared mutton dishes. Rumana told me at the beginning about how stringent and careful they are in purchasing meat and all other ingredients that go into their dishes and after that
lovely plate of mutton I can definitely understand why.Now here comes a rather interesting dish and I’m pretty sure you’ll remain confused until you actually taste it. The Gulab Jamun Sabji with Lacha Paratha. No, your eyes aren’t deceiving you. I did actually say that. Now, when we think of Gulab Jamun, all we can think of is sweetness and all that sugar and believe me I kept thinking the same with every bite of the dish I took. Waiting for that kick of sugar but no, this was a fully savoury dish and I absolutely loved it! The dish was basically 4 large,
fried gulab jamuns in a very thick and chunky cashew based gravy with tomatoes and onions and loads of spices. Fragrant and super delicious, scoop up some of that gravy with the lacha paratha and one bite in you’ll probably be off sweet Gulab Jamun for good.

These two dishes along with the starters were more than enough to make my friend and I totally full. But we had initially decided to order one more dish that was quite the staple in Bohri cuisine and sowe had to make space for it. This was the Mutton Khichda which featured lentils, broken wheat and shredded mutton, delicately seasoned with spices and slow cooked together. This is then topped with ghee and roasted onions at your table. The dish is served with fresh and hot, crispy rotis and is a dish by itself that is enough to cover your entire lunch. A very homely dish and something that makes you feel very much like you’re in a house eating a home cooked meal rather than a
restaurant, which by the way is what Rumana fully intends to do the way she has set up the place and serves the food.

Every Bohra meal starts and ends with a dessert and hence we ended with a plate of Malido which is a simple yet delicious dessert made from Jaggrey, crushed wheat, ghee and dried fruits with nuts.Finally I’d love to speak about the Thaal meal which is the main focus at the restaurant but if I speak,I know I won’t end, so I’ll try to sum up the experience as quick as possible with a video that will give
you guys an insight into the whole experience, so follow my page www.instagram.com/thehungrywolfgoa for a video on the full meal that I will be uploading on 8 th January.

                                  

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