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Born and brought up in Srinagar, Jasleen considers herself a work in progress, always learning and reinventing herself. She has been a media professional for close to a decade. Currently taking up freelance media assignments, Jasleen is passionate about pottery and cooking. She has learnt all her cooking from her parents and associates it with her childhood memories of Srinagar. Her varied experiences bring much more than food to the table!
Super food from super host!
This was my second meal at your place, and I will probably be back for more! Thanks for the delicious food and the warm company.
‘If there is paradise on Earth, it is this, it is this, it is this.’ extolled the famous poet, Ameer Khusro about Kashmir. And if you want to get a taste of this paradise in Mumbai, head for Zaika-e-Jannat by home chef Jasleen Marwah. It was my first Kashmiri meal experience and I am glad this was my introduction to the valley's cuisine. She’s got a delicious and extensive array of dishes that are a harmonious melange of flavours. The food is not spicy and oily. Two of the biggest plus points, because then you can truly enjoy the entire meal till the last bite, without feeling weighed down. Here’s what I relished during a relaxed Sunday lunch at her home: Nadru Fries: I discovered that lotus stem can also be so interesting! Crisp and yummy, without much ado, these fries are the once-you-pop-you-can’t-stop types. Tabakh Maas with Mutton Shorba: The mutton ribs, which have three indistinct layers – the top fat layer which is crisp, followed by the soft fat layer and then, the meat. The shorba is light and flavourful to another level. These two are clear winners! Rogan Josh, Laal Murg, Maas Yakhni, Dum Aloo: All these made up the main course and were served with rice. The mutton pieces in Rogan Josh were tender to the point where the meat easily fell off the bone. The gravy was soupy, light and had the right balance of flavours. Lal Murg was on point. Taste and succulence, both noteworthy. Maas Yakhni was high on the scale of likeability. The addition of milk gave it a nice touch. Dum Aloo was tangy, with an emphatic taste of garlic, which made it a deserving vegetarian in midst of an all non-vegetarian spread. The accompaniments were mind-blowingly delicious too: The radish and curd chutney topped with walnut shavings and the two pickles…wow, wow, wow!!! The Chaas was a nice cooler and totally refreshing. Such a wonderful meal had to end on the sweet note. The Phirni (thankfully, not too sweet) was served in a cute kullad (a delicately carved earthen pot) which itself got us all excited. There’s great pleasure in eating from an earthen pot. The feel of the pot and its ability to enhance the flavour of the sweet is unmatched. Last but not the least, the Kehwa was served. A Kashmiri specialty tea, it has spices, almond flakes and sugar. We all took a repeat. Just couldn’t resist. The social dining experience is far more sublime than what my words have been able to capture. Jasleen is a super talented chef and a gracious host. Together with her hubby, Neeraj and daughter, Jia, they serve you the most awesome time. We were a cosy group of 4 diners and it was fun, chatting and relishing the food. We even squeezed in a fun game between meals. When we left Jasleen’s home, we had all become friends.
My first experience with authentic Kashmiri cuisine, and I'm sold! The food was absolutely divine and Jasleen was a lovely host. Have already advertised it in my friend circle!