• Monday, March 02, 2015


Iftar Khazana

Almost all the restaurants -- no matter how big or small -- push down the accelerator button and gear up in the month of Ramadan. Virtually every restaurant in Dhaka arranges an iftar takeaway outlet for a month. Khazana has also done the same.
But as they say, leaders and winners don't do different things, they do things differently. Khazana distinguishes its iftar arrangement in several ways: the menu is very elaborate, the service is very satisfying and the makeshift outlet is given the feel of a carnival.

With several live cooking stations -- one making delicious and much festive jilapi, one cooking the half done dahi bara upon order, another frying 'kati' roll on a large pan and so on -- the entire space rises up to a very colourful juncture.   
On the other hand, Khazana also boasts a wide array of kebabs. Try their Chupa Rustum. A cross section reveals its hidden goodies under the vegetable wrapping: mutton on the second layer and chicken on the third.
Khazana gets a five star rating on presentation -- both in terms of the ambience they created and also the food items they have. Chupa Rustum is one example. 'Matka' lassi is another. The packaging for sweet lassi is a small 'matka' (clay pot) for you to take home; other than the aesthetic value, the subtle earthen taste the drink borrows from the pot adds to the charm.
An iftar meal does not seem to be complete without halim and jilapi. Khazana makes its halim using no less than 42 spices, with spices that are special in making halim coming from Lucknow. Moreover, Khazana does not use artificial colours in their jilapis. It uses saffron instead -- an extravagant affair indeed.
From a festive presentation to a plethora of food items cooked to perfection, Khazana has left no stone unturned to satisfy customers in Ramadan. If you seek an attempt to recreate their taste, here are a couple of recipes from Khazana's kitchen.
Murgh musallam biriyani

Murgh musallam --
1½  kg whole chicken
2 tbsp g flour
1 onion, ground
2 tbsp garlic paste
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp green chillies, chopped
1 tbsp red chilli powder
1 tbsp whole spices powder
1 tbsp crushed black pepper
2 pinch yellow food colour
4 tbsp vinegar
4 tbsp tamarind pulp
Few drops of screwpine (kewra)
2 tbsp oil
Salt as required
Biriyani --
½ kg basmati rice
4 eggs, boiled
½ cup fried onions
2 tbsp garlic paste
1 tsp whole cumin seeds
1 pinch yellow food colour
4 black cardamoms
4 bay leaves
2 sticks cinnamon
5 cloves
½ cup clarified butter
Salt to taste
Chicken -- Make small cuts on chicken. Make a paste of all the ingredients and rub this mixture on the chicken. Cook in a pre heated oven at 160 degrees for 40 minutes.
Biriyani --  Heat clarified butter in a pot, add cloves, cinnamon, black cardamom and bay leaves. Fry for a little while. Add garlic, rice, salt and water. Leave to cook. When rice is ready, add kewra and food colour. Leave on 'dum' on low flame. Place a layer of rice in a dish, arrange the chicken on top. Garnish with cut boiled eggs and fried onion before serving
Mutton boti kebab

1 kg mutton
250g yoghurt
1 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 tsp jeera and onion paste
2 large onions
2 tsp jeera
1½ tbsp red chilli powder
1 tsp - turmeric powder
1-2 tsp garam masala powder
Oil for cooking
Onion rings and fresh coriander with a few lime wedges for garnishing
Wash mutton well and cut into bite-size pieces. Marinate adding all ingredients except for onion rings, fresh coriander and lemon wedges for 1½ hours. Then add about 3 tablespoons oil in a pan and cook till done and all the water is absorbed; take care not to overcook. Alternatively, cook in an oven for 30 minutes on gas mark 250 degrees. Garnish with onion rings, fresh coriander and lemon wedges.

Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed
Special thanks to Khazana for arranging the photoshoot
Recipes courtesy of Khazana

Published: 12:00 am Tuesday, July 15, 2014

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