Homely and zestful!

What started in 2005, the speciality restaurant Rayalaseema Ruchulu made for itself a space that was unexplored until then…authentic Andhra cuisine with an emphasis on Seema region of course. And it is no prank this one – that they devised a festival of Telangana cuisine – Pakka Telangana Ruchulu from April 1, and thus making quite a statement – Food unites with flavours.

Spread over 20 days with two different menus, the food fest is on till April 20, and popular for her authentic recipes, chef, cookbook writer, publisher Jyothi Valaboju spearheads the first 10 days of cooking. She, with the help the chefs of the restaurant conjured up an expansive menu that is out and out Telangana, "I make all these just this way at home, just enough red chillies to make it sharp but not burn your tongue and the right mix of spices unique to the region," she says. True to her words the miriyala kodi vepudu leaving the after taste of the pepper, Kodi rekkala vepudu that just uses red chilli powder to up the ante, and not to forget the mamsam bokkala shorva – the bone soup with a character of its own are bang on with flavour and taste. Then there is also the Gudalu that can either be made using liver or the vegetarian version. However, the vegetarians can gorge on the pesaragaare. The home chef also let on some secrets of eating the right combo – for instance, the pesaragaare with a dollop of venna (white butter); who knew this was going to be one of the ultimate ways to nirvana. The regional variant of Pachi Pulusu she said one must either have with pappu (dal) or with chicken or mutton curries.

On the main course the Gongura senagapappu, vankaya alugadda, oora kodi miram (chicken roast in gravy), talakaya koora, pappu chaaru, kodi guddu koora, royyala ulligadda miram, kaakarakaya podi are unique preparations of the region, distinctly different in the way spices are used or method of preparation when compared to other regions. The food festival also gives you taste of the snacks like Sarvapindi, Sakkinalu, Nuvvulunda, Pallivunda and on the desserts Double ka meetha, Bellapannam, Peni, and Gummadikaya halwa showcase what makes this region's food exceptional – it is a balance of flavours with a multitude of influences (ruchulu) making for rich and robust Telangana regional cuisine. Rayalaseema Ruchulu hosts a buffet of Telangana food at its Jubilee Hills branch while other outlets serve a special Thali.

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