My usual gloomy Monday got so much better and fun-filled when I got a chance to accompany a friend to an event hosted by Tilda basmati. What a fun dinner it was ! The guests were lovely and we chatted away about food , recipes and our kitchens. I am always excited around foodies, I love to hear their stories and share mine. Just listening to their inspirations , experiments in their kitchen and their experiences in the food industry gives me an amazing boost of energy and refuel my passion to cook and feed. And how can you miss the bonus happiness when you bump into some of your own foodie pals . At the event I shared the delicious food with Binny, Sujji, Chintal and Suchismita and a few others in the business.
Now, Tilda is a favourite at home, we have tried all kinds of Tilda rice at home. Well, it’s only predictable on part of a girl from the state of Andhra Pradesh where rice forms the integral part of the cuisine to be a fan of quality rice. I remember the days in India, where they were only few brands and Tilda was the most popular one. But then, since we used to get our rice harvested from my grandparents fields , shop bought rice was only on the occasions when we cooked biryani and of course, if you are cooking the world-famous Hyderabadi Dum Biryani, it has to be cooked using the best quality long grain rice. That’s where Tilda used to come into picture. It used to be a luxury back then and hence we all relished and cherished every special moment we made biryani.
Fast forward to present day in London , Tilda has grown as a brand since then and introduced a variety of products. From a company which catered to the Asian community for their rice fix in the 60’s to a proper British brand which is widely loved and used by everyone to cook dishes from a variety of cuisines. Be it a Basmati rice and Quinoa salad for those summers or a pure Basmati to pour your spicy curry on for those cosy winters , Tilda has become a part of our kitchens forever. Personally, the ready-made rice was a saviour for me between 2012-2013 when I was travelling a lot for work and literally was living out of suitcases and had only a microwave in the name of kitchen. It’s no different story at home since we buy and consume 20kg bags of Tilda basmati rice in no time, Which I know is actually worrying J . They say simple and small changes go a long way, so I started cooking with the Tilda Brown Basmati and wild rice and it’s actually working ….the rice addicted man of the house enjoyed it yesterday with a spicy Andhra fish curry. Again, I was thinking about this swap for a long time but couldn’t dare to initiate the transition until the Tilda Supper club hosted by Mallika Basu.
The Dinner was set in a really lovely quirky looking venue in Notting hill, done up excellently with bright table covers, fresh flowers and the Tilda touch – the table was studded with some spices alongside the centre pieces. We started off with some finger food, Uttappams and tomato chutney which went really well with the bubbly we were handed over upon arrival. The chatting started and the food enthusiasts armed with cameras/smart phones clicked away with joy at every opportunity in an attempt to seize every fabulous moment of the evening .Of course, all this was happening while we were munching on the yummy Uttappams and the Hara Bhara kababs.
So, I said we were all in awe with the decor and table set up but only until the food started to appear. Mallika has cooked up a storm for us and with each plate of deliciousness arriving at the table we saw ourselves parting with the flower vases one by one 🙂 . We are after all , foodies first and we definitely know our priorities 🙂 The main course had Brown Basmati and Wild rice kichri and rice with Chicken served with a spicy paneer curry , a Bengali style fish in mustard sauce, , Hyderabadi Bagara Baingan with mini aubergines which had a special ‘Mallika’ twist where the sauce was made using unsweetened crunchy peanut butter….yes you read it right …curry with peanut butter 🙂 This is the sort of cooking excites and inspires me, pure creativity and awesomeness !!
As a wrap up, the desert was good ‘ol Kheer and lovely phirni …both made with rice and both delicious !! The cherry on teh top, the kind and generous Tilda people have loaded us with different varieties Tilda has on offer and the selection is simply superb and honestly at first I was quiet intrigued by the combinations. But, as I worked with them I really fell in love with them. My favourite is the brown Rice and wild rice with which I made a really good Curry Leaf Flavoured Rice. The dish turned out so nice and is full of goodness. What I love about using brown rice , wild rice is that it just reduces the guilt levels of having carbs to a significant level and there are absolutely no complaints with regards to taste, especially when you are using high quality ingredients like Tilda rice which takes your dish to the next level.