Let me formally introduce you to this charming chef – Chef Satish Madaan. At just 35 years-old, Chef Satish has many accolades under his belt, including 3 golds form the region’s most prestigious international culinary competition, FHA Culinary Challenge. Chef Satish has even cooked for our Former President Mr. SR Nathan! Chef Satish now trains the chefs at Zaffron Kitchen, imparting his specialty of fusing Indian and Western cuisines. Also, olive oil and sea salt are being used in the cooking at Zaffron, much healthier options than ghee.
Zaffron Kitchen has been my go-to restaurant when I need my naan-fix ‘cos it’s near my house and they have the best naans and masala chicken in my opinion! So it was a definite yes when I was asked to try their Christmas Menu. This is also their first time launching a Christmas menu.
The decor of the restaurant is very welcoming and great for large gatherings! There is even a children’s play area!
Indian tapas to tease our tastebuds! These are not available on the menu just yet, so we were really lucky to be the first ones trying. All 3 tapas were amazing and I couldn’t decide by favourite between the potato cake and fish with mini naan. Again, we witness Chef Satish’s innovations here – turning signature Indian dishes into exquisite bites.
Papadum ($4.50) – Light, thin and crispy! Love how there isn’t an aftertaste of oil as these are freshly made.
For the Christmas Menu, it’s a 3-course meal priced at $35 per person, available from 15 December to 31 December! Read on to see what’s in store.
Starter: Sweet Corn Soup or Mushroom Soup or Butternut Squash Soup – You may choose from a selection of soups for your starter. Albeit a little salty, I like the butternut squash soup most as there were chunks of squash in there, evidence that the soup was made in-house! The bread that accompanied the soup was warm and fresh. *thumbs up*
Main Option 1: Tandoori Turkey Set [Roasted tandoori turkey w herbs vegetable, chestnut filling & pilaf] – When it came to the mains, things get more interesting. Turkey has taken the limelight in the Christmas menu! This is my very first time seeing turkey being used in Indian cuisine and I have to say I was impressed. The turkey cubes were extremely tender, nothing quite like carved whole turkeys. They were marinated for a little more than 24 hours with spices before hitting the grill. The pilaf was subtle in flavour and every grain had a nice chew to them. This set comes with some chestnut filling pictured below too!
Chestnut Filling that comes with the Tandoori Set (not the whole plate of course :P). It had bits of chestnut inside and had a texture similar to fish cake! A notable mention goes to the mango and pineapple chutney that is a little sweet and tangy – one perfect sauce that will whet your appetite!
Main Option 2: Shahi Turkey Biryani [Turkey breast cubes marinated w yoghurt & freshly ground spices, w basmati rice & saffron] – I was rather amused by this dish when it was served. Instead of puff pastry, naan was used to cover the rice. Nice one there! The rice within was really fragrant and addictive. Basmati rice is used here and each grain was moist, packed full of flavours. Similarly, turkey cubes were used in this dish. They had a heavier taste of spices to them as compared to the turkey tandoori, which made them even yummier. If I had to choose, this would be my choice of main. However, it got spicier as we worked our way through the dish – great for chili-lovers!
Dessert: Blueberry Chocolate Sliced Cake & Masala Bread & Butter Pudding – Some light, old-school desserts to end off a heavy meal!
It may only be a 3-course meal but I’m very sure that the Christmas Menu at Zaffron Kitchen will fill you up! Below are two of Zaffron’s signature dishes that I never fail order.
Butter Naan ($4) – Never leave without trying their naan, unless you’re taking the Christmas menu and I doubt you’ll have any space for these!
Butter Chicken ($16) – This dish was perfectly executed on multiple levels. The chicken was juicy, succulent and bursting with butter infused goodness. The gravy was a balanced mix of herbs and spices encapsulating the rich savoury sweetness expected of a traditional North Indian dish. You will definitely want to save some stomach space for this!
Teh Tarik & Fresh Lime Juice
The F&B environment along East Coast Road is ever-changing. One will not be surprised to find a food fusion district where various elements are introduced from all parts of the world. If you are ever in the area, remember to drop by Zaffron Kitchen and be amazed by the incorporation of Western techniques to produce creative North Indian cuisine that will appeal to the traditional and modern appetite alike!
137 East Coast Road
Tel: 6440 6786
Many thanks to Marie for hosting the wonderful dinner! 🙂