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nikhil merchant on a culinary trail

Nikhil Merchant on a Culinary Trail at #WaterfrontGoa

Mumbaikar Nikhil Merchant started his journey on the culinary trail quite early. Curious about all things food since the age of 12 – Nikhil began his food career in journalism where he wrote extensive on food and the people behind it for luxury publications, nationally as well as internationally. His love for cooking and thirst for knowledge brought him down to Goa to visit Acron Waterfront Resort which is nuzzled on the banks of the Baga River.

During his stay at Acron Waterfront Resort, Nikhil Merchant made it a point to try out the in-house restaurant – The River Restaurant, established by award-winning UK MasterChef Cyrus Todiwala. Nikhil reveals about his enthralling experience with food at the restaurant through his Instagram posts.

nikhil merchant on a culinary trail

1: Lunch at The River Restaurant revealed to Nikhil Merchant how interwoven our cuisine is, The Portuguese, Goan, Vegetarian Goan and Parsi not only match in ingredients but also some preparations. A selection of dishes for Acron Waterfront with the likes of Cyrus Todiwala’s home-style dhansaak, sweet caramelized brown rice, his interpretations of cafreal shrimp with just the dry powder coating the crustacean, I chanced upon a relatively lesser known Parsi dish called murgini (pronounced ‘mor-gini).

Acron Waterfront Resort in Baga is one of the few which dishes out Parsi food in Goa and within good reason check out the link to understand why.

2: Recheado, a traditional Goan paste which is tangy, savory, spicy and hot in color. It’s commonly used to stuff a variety of seafood. It’s also used in vegetarian preparation such as okra. It’s made with red chillies, spices, turmeric, mustard and seasoning, adding sweetness is a tad pinch of sugar to balance the spices out and the main ingredients – souring agents Goan vinegar and a hit of coconut feni (a local high alcohol content spirit made with either coconut or cashew). The unique almost sour fermented flavour profile of the paste adds a beautiful dimension to any seafood.

This fresh catch of the day – Pomfret was stuffed generously with homemade fresh ground recheado, pan fried and served up hot and fresh in all its spicy-sour glory.

nikhil merchant on a culinary trail

3: It’s true, a little infusion with good white wine and then sous vide never hurt anyone. In fact, it’s delicious!

4: The Eggs Benedict, Chef George version – juicy, runny perfectly poached eggs atop fine slices of ham and throned over local Goan ‘pau’. Soft and spongy, flavourful and comforting. Instead of Hollandaise, there’s a melty cheese topping.

5: An excellent whiskey sour for my evening tipple. I wish India’s drinking community stepped up its cocktail quotient and made use of the talent in some unexpected stays like these,there is always someone you are probably going to meet who’ll fix you an excellent classic worth your buck.

6: The Mapusa nikhil merchant on a culinary trailmarket is close by to Acron Waterfront Resort and the chefs pick up produce from there on a regular basis. We went lunch ingredient shopping today at the market and discovered some local verities. Chef George cooked up a storm making his hybrid thermidor style lobster with cream and cheese with a smattering of Goan spices, a kolrahbi salad, a fresh dill and coconut side, some tubers et al.

Don’t forget to a pay a visit to Nikhil Merchant’s ‘Nonchalant Gourmand’ by visiting his Instagram page 

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