Bite into a T-bone steak
We have joined Chef Reddy of the Radisson before. We have followed him through the best hotels in India to cruise ships in America to menus of great inventiveness that he has brought to Nepal. “I only use what’s available and I experiment,” says Reddy as the Ceaser’s salad arrives.
Chef Reddy uses Cajun spiced chicken (he used to work out of New Orleans where he learnt Cajun cooking) in the classic recipe that has Romaine lettuce served in an Anchovy puree. The original Ceaser’s salad was created by Alex Cardini in Tijuana in his Caesar’s Sports Bar And Grill Family Restaurant in 1924.
“This starter requires marination. I believe that marination is nine-tenths of good cooking,” said Chef Reddy as a Papaya, watermelon and shrimp cocktail was served. The dish had a deliciously tangy-sweet marinaded shrimp with cognac and cocktail dressing at it’s heart with the papaya and watermelon soaking up the juices and a touch of Crème de Menthe making for memories.
There are three soups, five crepes and pastas and eight main courses. I tried a grilled T-bone steak with potatoes and different dressings.
A T-bone is up there alongside a Sirloin or a Porterhouse and Reddy soaked it with olive oil hours before he cooked it. Soft, tender and delicious, one of the sauces it was served with was the traditional wine and onion glaze, which had red wine and onions reduced to a heady brew that was thick and complemented the meat. The closest the sauce came to was a Demi-Glaze Bordelaise sauce, which the foodie Rombauer said is highly sympathetic to chops, steaks, and grilled meat.
I tucked into Chicken steaks orange mustard sauce that combined sharpness and sweetness all in a taste. I wonder what they did before mustard was first commercialised in the 18th century. And I thought the orange had come a long way since the French revolutionary Robespierre was criticised for serving rare oranges in pyramids to his guests in 1791.
Steaks are always served with potatoes and Chef Reddy’s roast potatoes or his garlic mash go perfectly with the main course. The 18th century agriculturist Antoine Augustin Parmentier who made the French Queen Marie Antoinette wear potato flowers to ornament her dress in order to popularise potatoes that were wrongly thought to cause leprosy and fevers, would be satisfied with the spread of a culture that eats potatoes universally almost all the time.
The richest sauce was the one made from cracked pepper with strawberry wine glaze on a bed of Succotash beans. It was creamily tasty and food writer Lulu Grimes would approve of Reddy’s interpretation of Succotash, of which she says, “At last, something else to do with butter beans based on an American Indian recipe. Eat it as a side dish or as a main course, spooned over a baked potato. Nice.”
There are vegetarian dishes galore on the new Olive Bistro menu including a Grilled cottage cheese steak best served with a spinach cheese sauce, four types of pizzas and a dozen other items I would return to eat including a Tamarind rubbed shrimp with roasted coriander seeds... but then Chef Reddy has always had the knack of bringing one back to the Radisson again and again.