Friday, May 18, 2007

Hiatus Shmiatus..

The issues that bedevil me continue to do so, but I might as well blog eh?
I want to firstly thank all of you for all your kind words, they are much appreciated!
For the Friday word go to Mona's, I may do something around it maybe over the weekend.

My reason to visit Denmark.. I was craving Tibetan food!!! ;-)
Just kidding, except for one day my general pattern for this short trip was
Day 1. Homebound.
Day 2. Homebound till almost noon, train to city centre, walked aimlessly away from city centre.
Day 3. Homebound till almost noon, train to city centre, walked aimlessly within city centre.
Day 4. *A* and I hopped on the train to Malmo, Sweden walked around some more. This time she made sure I wasn’t wandering around and that there was a method to what looked like my madness.

And you guys wonder why I am not posting anything about my trip? I had fun trust me, this being our second visit to Denmark and to the truly wonderful city of Copenhagen. Just not sure that it’s everyone’s definition of fun though.

Back to the Tibetan food, on Day 2 as I wandered the streets around the Nyhavn (New Harbor) neighborhood, I encountered this sign on the sidewalk pointing to a restaurant offering Tibetan cuisine on one of the many smaller streets around Nyhavn. Seeing the sign brought back memories of the Tibetan restaurant “Tibetan Kitchen” which was a block from where we lived in NYC near the NYU medical center. That was more than a decade ago and I figured why not check it out. The place is called “Himalaya” and turns out it offered Tibetan and Nepali food. The sign on the sidewalk was of it’s avatar from five months ago when they were purely Tibetan. I think it was around 4 pm in the afternoon, and as I walked into the place I heard Bollywood music blaring over the sound system as opposed to say calming Tibetan chants.
Bollywood it is so eevil I tell ya.. eevil ;-)

I also saw this Tibetan costume on what appeared to be a mannequin and when I first set my eyes upon it I almost did a double take, the place was as you can see rather dimly lit and my first response was..whoa! That is one dressed up serving staff!.

The only server in the place said they were still 15 mins away from opening, so I could sit there or come back. I thought I would walk around some more (I had probably walked 3-4 miles already up to that point).

I was most likely their first customer of the evening. Same person who I spoke to before showed me to my table and got me the menu. And I could not figure much out from it as it was in Danish, so he finally finds me an old tattered menu in English. And so we started talking, I asked him about where he was from. His name it turns out was “Ram” which is almost like “Jim” or “Jimbo” is in our neck of the woods here. He was from Nepal, and the dishes I ordered were his recommendations. He was from Nepal and after we talked a bit in English, he asked me if I can speak Hindi. I can and we did converse in Hindi and I was kind of shocked at how stilted my Hindi sounded.

Tired from my walk, I ordered some Tibetan tea as I needed a bit of a “pick me up”. Tibetan tea is almost like desi chai except for the fact that they add a touch of salt and ghee. It was interesting, not sure it would appeal to all palates at all. But I did appreciate the hint of creaminess from the ghee and its own different aroma and flavor which came through rather well.

I started off with appetizers, I had momos. These were lightly stuffed dumplings wrapped in a decorative dough served with chilli and green salad. They are also Tibet's national dish as per the description I saw and can be served steamed or fried. They was really quite nice esp the spiciness of the dip which was a lot stronger than the subtle bite of the fillings which were relatively mild. I had one each with chicken, beef and vegetable fillings.

I had the Lhasa Sosha as my entrée which is basically beef marinated in honey, soy and a dry sherry. It was served with green peppers, tomato, and some caramelized onions and fresh herbs.

I loved this, the beef was tender, well marinated and the sesame seeds on it went well with the flavors of the soy and honey. I had a hard time trying to discern the sherry though, I thought the soy might have over powered it. The onions, tomato and peppers were just perfect and juicy and not at all dry. I thought it was a very well done dish. I am not sure how truly authentic this cuisine is but it tasted good to me. I passed on the dessert as I was sort of stuffed.

Probably was a good idea. Some folks have told me how they would find it hard to like nap on a train in a foreign land especially when they are new to it, and are nto familiar with things. But guess what happens to me? I hop on to one of these trains that you see int he picture below, find myself a seat and promptly doze off and miss my stop Emdrup, and end up going to the next station.

I had to get off and then head back to our friends Marie n Thomas's place. By that time Marie n *A* were back from their conference and wondering where the heck I was and when I told them why I was late over the phone, I am sure they were amused.


Asha said...

That was a super quick hiatus man!!;D
Nepali food with Bollywood music,what more you want in Denamrk,eh? :p
Europe is great for short visits.I love Italy and Switzerland,would love to go back again someday.
Hey,you can always visit Andhra Pradesh and eat authentic Andhra goodies in my blog.
(Psst..Why FH is not listed in your food blogs? TRAITOR!!)
Have a great weekend Sanjay:))

Lotus Reads said...

Hi, Sanjay!

Finally we get to see something on your trip to Denmark, yeay!!! It's true, a visit to a Tibetan restaurant is probably the last thing I expected to read in your post on Copenhagen, but Tibetan restaurants are pretty rare, so when you see one, you have to go inside! I love the pictures and although you say the interior was dimly lit it does appear to have some nice decorations. And, Oh No to the Bollywood music, we can never get away from that, can we? :) The food looks terrific,Sanjay (so glad it's almost time for lunch). The tea sounds so unusual, I'm not sure I could ever drink my tea with salt and ghee, but I would try it for the experience.

All in all you appeared to have had a nice, restful time. Happy to be back? :)

Let's have some more pictures when you can!!!

Aditi said...

i didnt say nething cuz i was hoping u'd come around on your own.. and your hiatus would be like mine.. everytime i announce a hiatus i just cant stay away
welcome back truly.. u were missed..

Carrie said...

Sounds like a great trip!

Sanjay said...

@Asha. Yes it was, I am unpredictable in someways you know? :)

I have to stop by your blog for the Andhra goodies.
And I have to rearrange my blogroll and update it. You have a good weekend too.

@Aditi. Thank you for your very kind words. Words of the wise. :-)

Sanjay said...

@Lotus.. Thank you for your comment and thank you for stopping by. :-)
I finally managed to emerge from my (self inflicted)stupor.
You are so right about Tibetan restuarants being rare, like you said I just could not pass one by.

The place was dimly lit but very warm in terms of the colors. Yep re the bollywood music and the tea was rather nice, without the flavor from the ghee being overwhelming, it was just right.
And yes it is about the experience like you said.

Yes I am happy to be back in more ways than one. :)

There are more pictures, I am sure you will tire of them soon. :-) Will do a couple more posts.

Enjoy your lunch pal. :-)

MONA said...

Hey Sanjay, that seems like one great trip! Hope you will visit your parents when the weather is cooler here!

ML said...

Thanks for posting about your Denmark trip.

And YUM YUM...your description of the food you ate at the Nepali restaurant sounds so wonderful! The pictures are great!

I'm kind of leary of the tea though...salt and ghee? Hmmmm...

Have a great weekend!

Maggie said...

Yeah, Jay is back!

Every time I come here lately, I leave hungry. Why is that? :-)

Beach Bum said...

Welcome back, must admit that the hiatus thing had be worried. Several of the blogs I bookmarked have gone on a "short hiatus" and never come back. Never had Tibetan food, will have to look for a restaurant next time we visit my wife's people in Washington DC. I know we don't have a Tibetan restaurant anywhere near SC.

Lucia said...

Sounds like a good trip.

I was told one always eats momos in one bite, to keep the juices in, but I haven't figured out how that works when they're too large to do so!

patches said...

Back! Nice food pictures. Like Maggie, I'm feeling inspired to find something to eat.

Sai said...

Sounds like a great trip. I have had Tibetan food in Nepal and had loved it. I had hated the chai though because I cannot imagine adding ghee and hate the taste and smell. I am very fussy and have very strong olfactory senses hence really particular about aromas.

BTW I hate Bollywood music in Indian restaurants and I would hate to hear in Tibetan a lot more!

I wouldn't have expected a Tibetan restaurant in Denmark but hey this is globalization.

Shionge said...

What an exciting trip Sanjay...thank you for sharing and interesting Tibetan food you have there.

Sugarlips said...

Seems like you had a great trip and you enjoy equally great food :)

Good to see you back :)

Stay Beautiful...!

deepsat said...

nice to see you back sanjay!!

all that good food and a beautiful place.. u had a good trip indeed!!

take care!!

Coffee-Drinking Woman said...

oohhhh, that food sounds heavenly. I love travel stories/photos. It's a result of repressing my own wanderlust. Thanks for sharing!


Anali said...

Thanks for sharing your trip! I've never had Tibetan food. It looks good, but I'm not sure about the ghee in the tea. Wouldn't it get kind of oily? Although I guess hot buttered rum is supposed to be good. Maybe that is kind of similar...

iz said...

I'm glad good sense prevailed. Welcome back!

Mona Buonanotte said...

Oooh...that beef dish looks heavenly!

Orchid said...

Vow...u had me confused for a second..u were in Denmark, right??
But are having fun and I am reminded of how badly I need a break!!
More pictures, please!

NainaAshley said...

Sound like a great trip and great food. I have tried tibetian food in Manali , not sure if it was authentic but we tried Yak meat. I'm not a big fan of meat any way so I din't really enjoy it.

Ash said...

Sounds like a wonderful trip!!!

Diana said...

Ah, I'm glad you're back! The description of the restaurant has me drooling and drooling.

moegirl said...

That food looks amazing! Tibetan food in Denmark...who knew?! Sounds like a fun trip.