Travelling to India is such an exciting time, especially when you’re a foodie. It’s like having the same level of your mum’s cooking, but everywhere. Fresh jalebi being fried in the streets, steaming hot dhokra, dosas made in front of you by talent chefs. Ah, delicious. You don’t really need to have a list of good restaurants to go to, because every restaurant you go into, little or large will serve you some of the most authentic Northern and Southern Indian food. With this in mind, I still had one must visit restaurant I had to check out before leaving Mumbai. I had heard so much about Masala Library from my friends in London and it had also won multiple awards, therefore visiting Jiggs Kalra’s restaurant was one a no-brainer.
“We serve memories, not just food” is the slogan that is used to describe Jigg’s concept of vibrant colours, captivating blends of flavours and modern presentation of traditional Indian cuisine.
The interiors are elegant, dressed with pristine white table cloths, patterned plates and beautiful glassware with the most elegant, slender stems.
We kicked things off with some drinks from the delicious selection on offer, my sister and parents were for a gorgeous berry based mocktail that was rather refreshing and I ordered a virgin mojito. Perfectly sweet and refreshing, ready for a spicy and flavoursome meal.
Our waiter brought as a palate cleanser called ‘Fake Eggs’ which was made with coconut water as the white and mango pulp as the yolk. It was meant to be consumed like a shot, ready for the bread and starters.
After our palate cleanser came out some warm, soft doughy rolls that were to be eaten with our starters.
When choosing our starters, we avoided meat at all costs, purely because the Indian meat doesn’t suit our stomaches. Although, there was great selection of vegetarian and seafood starters that sounded absolutely divine.
We ended up going for a portion of the vegetarian kebabs, they were made with goat’s cheese, hung yoghurt and were deep fried before being served with a spicy chilli sauce and coriander sauce.
I was pleasantly surprised as I had never had vegetarian kebabs that weren’t made out of vegetables but instead cheese and yoghurt. They were rather ‘meaty’ when you bit into them with lots of flavour and substance. A great start to our meal at Masala Library.
For the other starter, my parents and sister loved the sound of the tandoori prawns. Although, I wasn’t so keen due to not being a seafood fan. On arrival they were probably some of the most delicious looking prawns I had ever seen. Plus, they smelt absolutely delectable – I just had to try one.
The humongous king prawns weren’t fishy at all, were marinated to perfection and were served with a cooling, creamy yoghurt to balance out the spice. Throughly impressed!
Between our starter and main course, we were presented with another palate cleanser in the form of a popsicle. It was sweet and salty, reminding me of the ‘golas’ that are sold on the street food stalls. Different but refreshing.
My heart was set on trying the hand pulled butter chicken. I’ve had my fair share of good ones in London, like in Jamavar but I wanted to see Jigg’s take on it.
The dish arrived with marinated chicken in the centre before our waiter poured a delicious tomato, buttery, creamy and spicy gravy all round the chicken and over it. My mouth is watering just talking about it, because it was out of this world. Probably the best butter chicken I have ever had. The chicken was succulent, the gravy was perfect and it made for a perfect dish accompanied by some garlic naan.
We ordered the dal makhani as our other main dish, which was served individually in small bowls. It’s such a warming and hearty dish that you can’t go to an Indian restaurant and not order it. It delicious with a slightly more spicer kick.
All of the food had left us feeling so incredibly full, but when you look at the dessert menu and see a few of your all time favourite desserts it is hard to say no.
The rasmalai was served in slices with apple cream in between on a bed of kesar milk and pistachios. It was heavenly, full of flavour and definitely satisfied my sweet tooth.
My sister loves jalebi, so we ordered the jalebi caviar dessert that was served in a large conch shell with rabdi and kesar foam. I much preferred the rasmalai to the jalebi caviar, but it was a hit around the table otherwise.
We finished up a fantastic meal with one last bit of sweet theatrics, paan flavoured candy floss that was of the compliments of Masala Library. It reminded me of my childhood sitting on the beach, eating a bag of sugary candy floss watching the waves come crashing in.
Overall, I was throughly impressed by Masala Library. The food was amazing, as expected. The service was attentive and the ambiance of the small restaurant was just perfect. If any of you are in Mumbai, you must go and have a meal at Masala Library.
Until next time…
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