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Once considered bland and boring, soya has found takers in a number of city-based restaurants
That the moist and tender kheema at Kangan, Westin, is a huge hit with the patrons is not a surprise. What does pleasantly surprise us is that the kheema is actually made from soya. As an ingredient, Soya is considered bland, boring and a favourite with the fitness conscious. However, the city-based restaurants have a different point of view. Soya is considered a versatile ingredient by them and when prepared well it tastes exactly like meat. Hence soya is gaining prominence at restaurants such as, Dario's, Soy, Malaka Spice, Terttulia and Kangan.
Dario's in Koregaon Park serves quite a few dishes made from soya, the most popular being the Tagliatelle Carnemolla. The dish is a pasta where the sauce is also made from minced soya. "Customers enjoy our soya-based dishes. Even the non-vegetarians cannot tell the difference between meat and soya," says Dario Dezio, chef at the restaurant.
While the new vegan menu of Malaka Spice offers a soya and mushroom preparation, Hotel Le Royce's Soy makes use of soya in dishes such as, the Thai Green Curry, the Mandarin mushroom and tofu and the hot bean water chestnut.
Terttulia offers soya in smoothies, stir-fries and burgers. The soy milk, honey and banana smoothie at the restaurant is extremely popular and offers an alternative to lactose-intolerant customers who prefer staying away from milk-based smoothies. Apart from salads that use tofu and soya generously, chef Sanjib Das recommends the pan-sauteed soya and soya and nuts burger. "Soya is good for health and it makes for a light meal. One doesn't feel too stuffed after eating soya-based dishes," says chef Sanjib Das.
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