Indian Accent Extends Its Residency at Mandala Club with Special Four Hands Collaborations
· 22 May 2023
Mandala Masters brings award-winning Indian Accent from New Delhi for its culinary residency in Singapore – until 3 June.
The renowned Indian Accent, which is No. 19 on Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2023, has gained international recognition over the last 14 years for its modern Indian cuisine. Indian Accent’s dishes by culinary director and Chef Manish Mehrotra are inspired by traditional Indian flavours, reimagined with contemporary techniques and global influences.
Mandala Masters brings Indian Accent from New Delhi for its residency in Singapore from now until 3 June. Mehrotra and Shantanu Mehrotra, Indian Accent’s executive chef, along with their 40 strong team will be presenting a collection of signatures and special cocktails to diners here.
Look forward to inventive creations such as sticky sweet meetha achar pork spare ribs, paired with green mango rice as well as wagyu pathar kabab with bone marrow nihari, lily buds, and herb spice naan. The latter comprises lightly marinated wagyu served with bone marrow and overnight cooked nihari (stew) which provides extra richness to the meat.
Another speciality is the Kanyakumari crab with sago pongal. The naturally sweet Kanyakumari mud crab is enhanced by coconut curry flavoured with curry leaves and mustard seeds. Sago pearls lend a welcome texture to the dish. Dinner rounds off with a rich doda burfi treacle tart matched with caramelised milk ice cream.
While in Singapore, Chef Mehrotra believes that it is the perfect opportunity to complement the culinary excellence of local chefs. This coming week, Mandala Club is holding two ‘Four Hands’ dining experiences with Chef Mehrotra and Singapore’s top chefs: Chef Jason Tan of Restaurant Euphoria (22 May, $388 for 9 courses) and Chef Malcolm Lee of Restaurants Candlenut and Pangium (28 May, $338 for 7 courses). (The dinner seatings are available between 6pm to 7.30pm. For bookings, contact: WhatsApp +65 8399 5364).
We find out more from Chef Mehrotra about his culinary experience and collaborations in Singapore.
How are you preparing for your ‘four hands’ menus with chefs Jason Tan and Malcolm Lee? How challenging is it to juxtapose/balance the flavour profiles in different menus?
Yes, preparing a menu for a four hands is a bit challenging because you are preparing dishes with some other chef whose cooking style and philosophy is quite different. But the meaning of four hands is that you blend each other’s talent, each other’s philosophy, and each other’s style in such a way that the menu moves in a progression that diners can enjoy.
With Jason, the cuisines are completely different. It’s French cuisine. With his love for onions, he truly has a very unique style. I am doing dishes which complement his, because in India too, we use a lot of onions in our dishes. With both Jason and Malcolm, I am planning dishes in such a way that each and every dish complements their dish and vice versa. Malcolm has got a local Peranakan style of cooking, which in curries and a few things are a bit similar to Indian cuisine, so it is slightly easier for me.
Could you give us a sneak peek of the dishes you’ll be serving?
For both of them, I am planning the dishes in such a way that they can complement each other. For Jason’s menu, we have sweet chilli pork ribs i.e. our meetha, aachar pork ribs, which we are doing with raw mango rice. We are also doing our dessert, the doda burfi treacle tart and our kulcha bread, which is quite popular in this pop-up. For Malcolm’s collaboration, we are still working on the menu so that each and every dish can complement each other.
You’ve brought a lot of spices from India – what are some of the most unique spices or special blends that you use for your dishes?
Yes, we got a lot of stuff from India for this pop-up, especially the spice blends. There are some unique spice blends, especially some spices, like a special fennel powder, which is used in Kashmiri cuisine. We got this, because usually you won’t be able to find it anywhere. Even in India, you don’t get it everywhere. We have a special supplier from Kashmir for this. Also a dry ginger powder. Again, very unique for Kashmiri food. Then we have Kolhapuri masala, which is from Maharashtra, and there’s a small family in Kolhapur which makes that masala for us. We have got all these from India, they are quite unique. I don’t think you would find these anywhere in Singapore, and not everywhere in India, either.
What do you think of Singapore’s dining scene and have you had the chance to try any interesting places or visit any markets?
I have been travelling to Singapore for the last 12 years. The first time I came to Singapore was in 2011. Since then Singapore has been vibrant and the food scene has been really amazing. Now it is 12 years later, and there are even more amazing places to try. I have been trying a few restaurants, which I have not tried earlier. One of my favourites is ‘Revolver’ by Chef Saurabh Udinia. I’m going to try ‘Zen’, which is just next door to the Mandala Club. I tried ‘Rhubarb’, which is one Michelin. I’m definitely going to try to dine at some more. I’ve tried Chef Malcolm’s restaurant, ‘Pangium’. All these restaurants have been great, and really contribute to the dining scene of Singapore.