Thursday, July 21, 2005

Adventures with the in-laws # 3

Most desi's rave about Southall, the food, the ambiance, the indian-ess. So have you eaten gulab jamun's in....or aloo parathas at.....or watched so-and-so film at....

Quality Food (where all the desi's get their groceries from when in/ near Southall yaaar!!), where you can by any size pressure cooker, gazillions of agarbati's, 300 types of pickles and 20kg bags of basmati rice, all under one roof, is the busy hub of it all. And consequently it's perpetually 'jam' packed with Indian's from all over London stocking up on groceries of amounts big enough to feed whole armies. I personally prefer the Spice shop on Drummond street, which is for me more central and although on a far far smaller scale is suitable enough for my much smaller cooking operation.

Beside the grocery shops there's Himalaya Palace Cinema which claims to be 'the most luxurious 3 screen cinema in West London'. Talk about niche marketing! The sidewalks are filled with people jostling around stalls selling anything from jalebi's to glitzy sandals, all amidst blaring hindi/ punjabi music, fluttering jangly clothes, movie posters and wafts of warm spices. All in all its a pretty good replica of Delhi's Karol Bagh.

Unfortunately I'm not impressed at all. We've given Southall many many chances to be endearing, to make us feel homesick for India, to be a slice of home. In our efforts, over 3 years, we've been to atleast 15 different eateries and not one of them proved up to scratch. Parathas floating in oil, one too many red-dyed paneer tikka's and a host of other non-indian tasting dishes has completely put us off it.

Three Saturday's ago we took my in-laws to Southall; they were keen to see it as apparently many Indians back home enquire whether while in London they will went to Southall. So Southall it was. Same ol same ol, smells, sounds and crowds (I have to say though that occasional interaction with great crowds are enjoyable, the 'un-afraid-ness' of milling people, the only part that make me miss India). Lunch at an awful place called Roshni. Looked deceptively bright and cheerful. Our first clue should have been a woman yelling at the waiting staff. But we were already seated by the time we noticed her, tired from walking around, and resigned to our fate. How much I regret that meal! Aloo tikki's with a thin layer of mashed potato deep fried in a pakora batter. Bilious red paneer tikka. Food absolutely floating in oil. No words can describe the lurches in my stomach with every bite and so I will not try.

Roshni: 7-9 South Rd, Southall, Middlesex UB1 1SU. Don't try it!!!

By the by nowadays I'm Sudoku-ing in under 17mins. V is way ahead of me at well under 10 hoo

No comments:

Post a Comment