Category | Food Story

Indian Tapas Recipe

Posted on 09 September 2017 by admin

This third article on Indian Tapas will share simply, one of our favourite localised recipe. In the meantime, here are some to try at home whilst inviting friends over:

  • Tortilla Espanola – Spanish omelette with eggs, potatoes and onions
  • Huevos Rellenos de Atun – Devilled eggs with Tuna (sometimes with prawns)
  • Potatas Bravas – Blanched or fried potatoes with aioli sauce (and why not add in a sprinkle of Cajun or peperoni on top as well)
  • Aceitunas a la Madrilena – Herbed and spice red/ green olives
  • Banderillas – pickles, onions and peppers lined up prettily on a toothpick
  • Croquetas de Jamon – croquettes with chicken instead of ham bacon bits


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Evolution of Tapas, from Spain to the rest of the world!

Posted on 15 August 2017 by admin

The literal meaning of Tapas is “cover” or “coaster”.

According to legend, the story unfolds in Castille, Spain, the very land of the legendary Don Quixote. In those times, men would frequent taverns and drink red wine (did you know that the earliest archaeological evidence of wine production is in China in 7000 BC?).  Since there were flies around, food served in little plates were used to cover the glass of wine – which is where it derived its name from.

An alternative historical story recounts of King Alfonso X el Sabio (the Wise). He prohibited the serving of wine without an accompaniment of food to prevent drunkenness and misconduct. In the North of Spain, tapas is known as Pinchos – meaning stick – as the food is often on a stick.

Another story tells of how King Alfonso had stopped to rest in the town of Ventorillo del Chato during a long journey, and he ordered a glass of sherry. As there was a strong wind which blew dust in the air, he was served his glass of sherry covered by a slice of ham to prevent sand from contaminating the drink. The King liked it so much that he ordered seconds, exactly like the first, covered (tapa) with jamon.

Over time, the meaning of Tapas has evolved. Today it is widely known as an appetiser or snack which is consumed with a drink.

What about in Malaysia? The vision of bringing Indian street food to the elitist restaurants of the world have introduced a new breed of dishes in London, New York, Toronto and Sydney… and now, to Kuala Lumpur by our expert culinary chefs.

That is why, The Big Rajah himself, Dato’ Dr John William, went to Asia’s top restaurant in Bangkok (one of the top restaurants globally), to capture the essence and taste of the very best in the world and serve it to his countrymen back home.

In our next innovative series of food design, we will introduce our Indian Tapas Menu… all halal to the tickle the tastebuds of us Malaysians.


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Malaysian Tapas

Posted on 24 July 2017 by admin

Tapas – the delight of Malaysians. We are a nation spoiled with a wide array of selection when it comes to food. There are very few countries in the world that attest to such a buffet spread in our hotels and restaurants. Hence, we are quickly bored with a single type of food and we crave for variety. That makes buffets in Malaysia particular popular.

And here is where Tapas steps in.

With its origin in Spain, Tapas is an appetiser of snack taken with an evening drink. Traditional Spanish eateries offer tapas free of charge when a patron buys a drink and this fast-fading custom is still practiced in the North of Spain. Of course, this is music to our Malaysian ears – a variety of delicious Mediterranean food for FREE!

Today, “tapas” has taken the world by storm. One can go into a tapas bar in almost any developed country in the world. And tapas itself is ever evolving, from a Mediterranean apetiser to little servings of traditional food. In Malaysia, this exciting evolution will be seen to celebrate Indian, Chinese and Malay fusion food, all served in bite-size. Japanese sushi bars testify to this concept of bite-size food that offer plenty of variety.

Viva Tapas!

Keep an eye out for TBR’s upcoming selection of Indian Tapas designed by our expert culinary team. And look out for our next article on the Evolution of Tapas.

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Chicken Chettinadu Varuval

Posted on 22 October 2016 by admin

Prep time 15 mins/Cooking time 40 mins/Serves 4 pax


  1. 500 gm chicken
  2. 1tbsp ginger garlic paste
  3. 1tsp tur
  4. 1tbs chili powder
  5. 1tbs salt
  6. 1 l oil for frying
  7. 1stick cinnamon
  8. 2 star anise
  9. 2 cloves
  10. 2 pods cardamom
  11. ½ tsp cumin seed
  12. 100 gm dried chili cut to small pieces
  13. 2 onions sliced
  14. ½ tsp ginger garlic paste
  15. 2 big to
  16. matoes sliced
  17. 1 tbs chili powder
  18. 1 tbs coriander powder
  19. 1tsp garam masala
  20. 1tsp jeera powder
  21. 1 tsp black soy sauce
  22. ½ lime juice
  23. Coriander leaves to garnish


  • Cut chicken
    into small pieces, wash chicken
  • Marinate with garlic & ginger paste, turmeric, chili powder, salt
  • Fry chicken lightly and keep aside
  • Heat a pot with oil
  • Add and stir fry cinnamon stick star, anise, clove, cardamom, cumin seed and dry chili.
  • Add onion, ginger and garlic paste and tomato, fry to golden.
  • Add the lightly fried chicken pieces
  • Add chili powder, coriander powder, jeera powder, garam masala powder, black soy sauce, salt to taste and squeeze lime juice.
  • Coriander to garnish


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Imperial Sunday Chicken

Posted on 10 December 2015 by admin

So what goes on in the private home of The Big Rajah himself? What are some of their favourite dishes at home? Here’s one.

An original recipe carved by Rosari Xavier for their Sunday family meals and reserved for special guests of the family, the Imperial Sunday Chicken was commercialised by the catering house following a strong demand by the customers after tasting the uniqueness of its flavour.

Preparation time: 15 minutes (excluding marination time)
Cooking time: 40 minutes
Serves: 6 persons

1 whole chicken cut into small pieces (1.5 kg)
300 gm tomato (cut into 8 pieces )
3 whole red onions (chopped)
2 tbs garlic paste (blended)
100 gm cooking oil
2 tbs chili powder
1 ½ tbs meat powder
½ tsp turmeric powder
2 sticks cinnamon
5 cloves
3 piece cardamom
1 tsp fennel
1-2 stalks of curry leave
Salt and lemon juice to taste


1. Wash chicken and drain off excess water.
2. Put drained chicken into a bowl. Add chili powder, meat powder, turmeric, cut tomatoes, chopped onions, ginger and garlic paste. Lastly salt to taste. Mix evenly and leave to marinate for at least 30 minutes or overnight, to allow the flavours to soak into the chicken.
3. Heat a saucepan and add marinated chicken. Leave it to cook for 20 minutes on slow fire until the juices soak well into the chicken.
4. In a frying pan, heat cooking oil. Add in cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, fennel and curry leaves.Fry till fragrant.
5. Add in the cooked chicken. Stir fry for 10 minutes on medium heat.
6. Finally, add in some salt and lemon juice to enhance the flavour-some dish.
7. To garnish-sprinkle freshly chopped coriander leaves.

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Mutton Mysore Rajah

Posted on 24 August 2013 by admin

The Mutton Mysore has to be one of the most delectable mutton dishes. The tender mutton is cooked slowly to bring out the flavour of the meat, infusing it with the tanginess of fresh tomatoes and a firework of spices. We call it the mutton mysore rajah because it’s one of our favourites and our recipe is exquisite! The best part is that it isn’t hard to make at all. It’s so good, it’s bound to be a hit at parties!

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour
Serves: 10 people

300g tomatoes – cut into 8 pieces each
1kg – lean mutton cubes
2 red onions – chopped
2 potatoes – cut into cubes
1 tbsp garlic paste
1 tbsp ginger paste
100g cooking oil
1 tbsp garam masala
2  tbsp chili powder
1 ½ tbsp meat powder
1 tbsp cumin powder
½ tsp turmeric powder1 stick cinnamon
3 cloves
5 pieces cardamons
1 tsp fennel
1 stalk curry leaf
Salt to taste

1. Wash mutton cubes and drain.
2. Put drained mutton into a pot and add garlic paste, ginger paste, turmeric powder and salt. Leave to cook for 45 minutes.
3. Heat saucepan. Add oil. Add in cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamons, fennel, onions, tomatoes, potatoes, curry leaves and fry till fragrant.
4. Add in cooked mutton together with chilli powder, turmeric powder, meat powder, cumin powder and garam masala powder. Leave to cook on slow fire for about 10 minutes and lastly, add salt to taste.
5. To garnish, sprinkle freshly chopped coriander leaves and red chilli.


Now sit back, relax, and enjoy the delicious Mutton Mysore Rajah.

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Gobi Jaipur

Posted on 03 August 2013 by admin

If you aren’t a fan of cauliflower (or ‘gobi’ in Hindi), you’re about to be. It’s a tricky vegetable because when it isn’t cooked properly, it can be quite unappetizing. Fortunately, we have the perfect Big Rajah exclusive recipe that will bring out the best of cauliflower. It’s quick, easy and most importantly, very tasty. Saute them in the right mix of aromatic spices and you’ll get a dish fit for royalty, the very reason why the Big Rajah himself allocated the posh name ‘Jaipur’ to the dish.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 10 people

600gm cauliflower – separated into florets
4 pips garlic – finely chopped
4 slices ginger – julienned
4 tbsp chilli sauce
3 tbsp yoghurt
½ tsp garam masala
1 tsp paprika powder
½ tsp tandoori powder
½ tsp. corn flour – diluted in water
4 tbsp. cooking oil
½ cup water
Salt to taste

1. Wash and half cook cauliflower then drain well.
2. Heat saucepan and add oil.
3. Fry the ginger and garlic till fragrant.
4. Add half cup water, chilli sauce, paprika powder, garam masala, tandoori powder and bring it to a boil.
5. Reduce heat and add yoghurt, cauliflower and salt.
6. Cook a further 3 minutes, adding the diluted cornflour and toss until cauliflower is well coated with the sauce.
7. Garnish with chopped fresh onion leaves.

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Salmon Fish Head Curry

Posted on 17 December 2012 by admin

The salmon fish head curry is one of the new inclusions to be seen on The Big Rajah Menu very soon. So, we thought we would share this recipe with you and welcome your feedback.

Though you can use other fish for this curry, the light sweetness of salmon balances the sharpness of curry perfectly. Salmon does not have that strong fishy taste that some people hate. With some brinjal, onions and tomatoes to enhance the taste and fragrance of this curry, you’re bound to love this recipe.

Time for preparation: 15 mins
Time to cook: 30 mins
Difficulty: 3/5


Image via theguardian by H. Taillard

1 Medium to large sized head of fish
*2 tbsp fish curry powder
*1 tsp tbsp chilly powder
*½ tsp turmeric powder
(Note: mix * with water to forn a thich masala paste)
5-6  pods Garlic chopped coarsely
3 large Bombay onions finely slices
2 fresh chillies slit lengthwise
3 ripe tomatoes cut in wedges
1 brinjal cut in wedges
5-6 Okra cut in half
2 sprigs curry leaves
2 stalks coriander leaves cut coarsely.
50gm Tamarind pulp mixed with one cup water to form a thick paste (strained)
50 ml fresh coconut cream
1 tsp fenugreek
1 tsp mustard seeds
t tsp cumin seeds
3tbs cooking oil
salt to taste


a)    Heat oil in a wok then add fenugreek, mustard seed and cumin. Add in the curry leaves fresh chillies, chopped garlic and sliced onions. Sauté until onions are cooked.
b)    Add masala paste and reduce flame allowing the paste to cook until oil surfaces.
c)    Add 500 ml water and tamarind paste and bring to a boil.
d) Add in the vegetables (brinjal, okra and tomatoes). They should be soft but not overcooked to the bite.
e) Add salt to taste, reduce flame and submerge fish head in gravy.  Boil for a further 5 minutes reducing the fire to medium-low.
f) Add coconut cream and let it simmer until fish is cooked for a few more minutes taking caution not to overcook the fish. Add coriander leaves just before dishing out.

Note from the chef: Ensure that the fish is fresh for best effect. Instead of using fresh coconut, you may substitute with fresh yoghurt or milk for a healthier option. If you prefer a spicier fish curry, you may add another teaspoon of curry powder.

Warning: Ensure that the fire is well controlled throughout the cooking process. Vegetables should be soft but not overcooked. Remember that cooking brinjal releases additional water into the gravy so it would be good to control the density of the curry. Finally, the fish head should be cooked and NOT overcooked as it would look rather unappealing if it falls all apart into the curry.

In general, this is not too hard a dish to create. The main challenge would be fire control. Ensure that the fire is kept at medium during the cooking period then lower the heat later so that the fish cooks beautifully.

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Prawn Sardique

Posted on 13 October 2012 by admin

Here’s a unique ‘testworthy’ recipe the Big Rajah offers. It is indeed a most tantalizing concoction for piquant prawns which will bite into your memory.

Pick up a shopping bag to begin this quest for the selection of ingredients and let the connoisseur in you interpret this recipe into reality.


1 kg prawns
2 stalks lemongrass
5 gm belachan
5 tbs chilli paste
3 tbs tamarind juice
2 bulbs red onions (diced)
1 tbs garlic (blended)
1 tbs ginger (pounded)
1 tbs chilli powder
50 gm tomato (diced)
100 gm cooking oil
1 tbs brown sugar
Salt to taste

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Serves: 10 pax

1. Peel the 1kg prawns without removing the tail.
2. Wash the peeled praws and drain off the water.
3. Heat a pan and add in the cooking oil.
4. When oil is hot, fry the lemongrass, belachan, diced onions till fragrant.
5. Add in garlic, ginger, diced tomatoes, chilli paste and pour in 2 tablespoons of water.
6. Add in the chilli powder.
7. When the mixture becomes a thick red paste, add in the drained prawns and leave to cook on slow fire for about 6 minutes.
8. Finally, add in the tamarind juice, salt and sugar to taste.

When the cooking’s done, you can relish the scent of spice and savour the fruit of your labour, ambrosial cuisine fit for a king.

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