Sunday, November 7, 2010

Naga Kitchen

So the end of the last month, after NitWit left to the US, P, VP and I crashed at VP's for the night. In the morning, after a nice breakfast of appams and stew, we decided to have lunch at the Naga Kitchen. P being a vegetarian, there was precious little for him to eat, and since there was a vegetable soup, soup it was that we had. Simple, and nothing too different from what anyone could make at home with a minimalistic effort.

In terms of starters, again, I don't quite remember there being too many things vegetarian, so we decided to have the akhuni, which is a fermented soya bean chutney, something that's very common to Naga cuisine. Along with that, VP and I had the smoked chilli pork. Unlike regular pork, smoked pork is quite hard, and both VP and I soon realised this the hard way. Although I liked the overall taste (spicy as hell is a taste I'm getting used to), I think I concluded the same as VP - smoked pork ain't for me, not if it's this hard!

The akhuni is a fermented soyabean chutney and has a very pungent smell; pungent to the point where some people may wanna leave. It's not a 'bad' smell, but it is strong. Thankfully I could sit through it, and more importantly, thankfully VP didn't get up and leave. Here, the akhuni is served like a salsa - with tomatoes, onions (I think, don't remember), and chillies (not sure if this is the way it's served everywhere, anyone who knows can leave gyaan in comment section).

Veg soup

Smoked chilli pork

Akhuni

Have already eaten a late breakfast, we opted for a simple main course. Steamed rice, egg fried rice, and smoked pork curry. The rice were the usual fare, so nothing to write home about. The pork, however, was quite another story, although again we had asked for smoked pork and not fresh pork. Smoked pork on it's own has a unique taste, smoky (duh!), a little salty, and can be had as is. The waiter asked us if we wanted it less spicy or ..., to which I replied "Give it to us the way the people of Nagaland eat it." Well, OK, big mistake.

Remember Hans Blix? He's the German guy appointed by the UN to go to Iraq in search of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). Well, we all know he didn't find any there, but he should have been looking for them inside a Naga home, or in a Naga kitchen, instead of in Iraq, because I tell you, the real weapons of mass destruction were in the pork curry. Mixing it with the rice and placing it into my mouth caused a series of explosions, almost like my tongue was being carpet-bombed by some heavy duty bomber. Holy crap, this thing was spicy as hell. I don't know if they were actually using the Naga jalokia chillies, but if they were, then I know why those things out to be outlawed! It had a nice tomato-based gravy, but was spicy as hell. I'm not used to this kind of spiciness, and a little later my tongue went numb. So much for that, but hey, I'm game to go there again, but wouldn't shoot my mouth off like I did this time.

Overall, I think vegetarians would do well to stay away unless you don't mind just sampling the akhuni along with rice and soup. Meat eaters, and adventurous gourmands, this place is worth a shot even though it's far. Another good thing is that it's not open only during the lunch hours and dinner hours, but it stays open even between 3:30 PM to 7 PM, so walk in anytime late on a Sunday afternoon after a hangover, and smash those blues away with some fire.

Smoked pork curry

Egg fried rice (l), steamed rice


Food: Didn't try too much as we were already full, but what we had was interesting and good.
$$$: This meal, along with ice cream, cost us around Rs 600.
Service: Good
Verdict: Veggies, stay away. The rest, worth a visit, and you decide if you'd like it or not.
Extra info: Stays open even between 3:30 PM and 7 Pm, so you can walk in for a late lunch as well.

Naga Kitchen, #26, AVS Arcade, opposite Adidas showroom, Kamanahalli main road, Kamanahalli, Bangalore. Phone: 41732012

3 comments:

Suhas said...

Sounds interesting. Are you game for checking it out once again next weekend?

Eveline said...

You absolutely must make a trip there again... with ME!
I went there on Wednesday and like you I had asked the waiters to add extra Rajamircha/ Naga Bhut Jolokia. Two minutes into my meal and I was crying like a little girl.

It looks like you had the 'chutney'. Which is a common side dish in most Naga meals. At the Naga Kitchen, dried fish or crab paste is added to it. Akhuni can be served separately but it's commonly mixed into chutneys and pork preparations.
The Non-veg thali would pretty much cover all these items. Next time you go there you must also try the Naga Chicken. It's quite nice.

Anonymous said...

Wow, i went in search of bhoot jolokia to north east. it was right here in bangalore!!! :)
shall try it out sometime.
sreenath