Simply South for me has been a journey that I’ve taken along with the restaurant itself. As they complete 3 years of existence and consistency, I stand here ready to shout off the minarets of the Charminar of how wonderful a restaurant they are. What had started as a bitter-sweet experience 3 years back on my first visit has now become so synonymous with deliciousness from then on.
There have been days when I have taken a look at my cafeteria food and in want for some break have always headed for Simply South. And firstly the main point to note about Simply South is that they don’t play with the mind that south-indian food has to be spicy. They have kept the recipes the most authentic and most importantly, flavorful. I mean just have their Rasam at some moment of time to know the exquisite dishes that they put up.
As they begin their 3rd year of food journey of wonderfully serving their guests, they’ve added in new dishes as part of their menu. Do not worry so coz the regular favorites like Uragai Mamsam, Chapa Vepudu and Telengana Kodi Roast haven’t been phased out though. In fact the new additions actually enhance the menu of flavors a lot more. We’ll be taking a look at the new menu additions across all the states in the Simply South menu with this post.
We started off with the crunchy and deep-fried goodness of Meen Karwari. This is an absolutely delightful snack of fish fingers smeared in masalas and to enhance the taste a lot more, sprinkle some lemon juice on top.
The Tala Gosht needs no introduction for a person who’s been living in Hyderabad for quite some time. But it’s important to note here that the Tala Gosht has been secluded to the Old City or the various dingy Irani Cafes spread across the city. The dish has never got the required push in the restaurant scene and Simply South has finally featured it on their menu. It has now moved location from the bylanes of Charminar to the find a worthy place.
In fact as I moved on the main course, I couldn’t help noticing one thing. Sure Hyderabadi food is extremely famous and packs in lots of spices, aroma and flavor. But as a traveler or a tourist in the city if I asked directions to try Hyderbadi food, all one would guide me to, is towards the Hyderabadi Biryani. In fact so many lesser known dishes of the Deccani cuisine aren’t even known the city’s dwellers and been secluded to the four walls of the house. I’ve been trying to showcase the city’s culinary scene and everytime I had to take a friend or tourist who asked for me help along to taste, I had to travel all the way to Charminar to make them relish on Hyderbadi food.
So you could imagine my happiness to actually see the Hyderbadi page of the menu expand. The Keema is quite available in many of the Irani cafes but the Ambada Keema finds special mention here at Simply South. The roselle leaves give the keema (minced lamb) a tangy flavor. The Hyderabadi classic, Bagara Baingan was wonderfully cooked too. I liked the fact that they’ve stuck to using baby brinjals which makes the taste so so so much better….
As I moved along the course of the South Indian states along with the food, we had the Kodi Koora. In a discussion with Chef Chalapathi Rao, I did ask the question “Why the Kodi Koora?” Was another chicken dish as part of the menu really necessary? And the answer was yes. A lot of the guests didn’t quite have a chicken gravy to have with rice and so the Kodi Koora found a place on their menu. The Kodi Koora feels like comfort chicken dish you’d want to relax with. In fact I loved it so much, that I ordered a portion of plain rice to enjoy it completely and dug my hands into that heavenly curry.
The Anumulu Koora was a curry I was having for the first time though. Having tasted recipes made using Butter Beans before, the Anumulu Koora was something that I had missed. In fact this curry is known by different names and made in so many ways using the local flavors in the different states in the south. The new Simply South menu features the Andhra Pradesh version of the Anumulu Koora. Made using butter beans, this tangy makes use of native brinjals and potatoes in a tamarind-esque gravy. The Alleppy Prawns Curry turned to be favorite at our table. A little-sour curry made using a raw mangoes and prawns from the town of Alleppy. All that’s needed alongside with the prawns curry is either hot Appams or Puttu.
We ended one of the most satisfying meals in the long time with Gasgase Payasa, a payasam made of poppy seeds. The Gasgase Payasam is actually the Chef’s own mother’s recipe. For a person like me who eats out a lot, Simply South is my definition of comfort food. It’s just comforting to know that there is one restaurant which doesn’t push the fact in your face that south indian food is spicy but actually a pleasant, rich and delightful experience.