Tag Archives: Biryani

Man-O-Salwa (Clayton, Melbourne) – a Review

Man-O-Salwa is located on the busy Clayton road and sits adjacent to several other restaurants, especially the famous Anshuman ka Dhaba (an Indian restaurant specializing in Punjabi cuisine).

Specializing in Pakistani cuisine, this restaurant was recommended to us by a friend who had dined there before. I had my apprehensions ofcourse. Growing up in the Middle East and having neighbours from the region, I had a fair understanding of the country’s cooking style and flavours. I have tried a few restaurants in Melbourne too but none had come close to an enjoyable experience. (If you have any recommendations, please do let me know).

But Man-O-Salwa turned out to be a good surprise.

Man-O-Salwa, Clayton - specializing in Pakistani cuisine - a review on

We were quite lucky to get seated immediately on a Saturday evening. I have heard that the waiting time is huge if you arrive later than 7.30pm and so is the serving time. Luckily, we were seated, orders taken and served relatively fast.

Service is efficient but basic. Do not expect friendly and patient waiters here; all you will see are two overworked waitresses handling an incredible amount of work. (Hope the management reads this review and employs more staff especially for weekends than expect the girls to perform like robots).

No alcohol is served, given the type of restaurant so the beverages list is basic to juices and soft drinks. The menu at Man-O-Salwa is a good representation of Pakistani cuisine; it had all the basics covered without getting too extensive.

All the dishes arrived one after the other though we had ordered it as courses, except for dessert. So here’s what we ate;

We started off with pani puri which is quite famous as an Indian street food so I wanted to know if there’s any difference to the Pakistani version. In fact, it was quite interesting. To start with, the filling for the puri was a chickpea mixture which was really different to anything I have had before and quite delicious too. The pani or the ‘spiced water’ is usually green but this version had a red colour. The tamarind chutney was quite similar to the ones served in India. Different but delicious; I would definitely order it again and I would totally recommend it.

Pakistani style paani puri - Man-O-Salwa, Melbourne - a review on

Next came the lamb seekh kebabs served with a raita/yoghurt dip and salad. The kebabs were really really good. Melt-in-your-mouth, so full of flavour from the spices and aromatics yet so subtle. I see myself eating a lot of these in the future; wouldn’t mind all the wait just for this. Absolutely a must try.

Lamb seekh kebabs - Man-O-Salwa, Melbourne - a review on

For mains, we got an assortment of flat breads like the plain rotis, tawa parathas and butter naans. And to accompany these, we ordered Beef Nihari and lamb brain fry. The flatbreads were good, especially the tawa parathas which ofcourse had a lot of oil but then that’s the way it’s really made. Not a place to count calories!

The Nihari was really good but I would have preferred more flavour to the soupy sauce part but the meat was cooked real tender. There aren’t many restaurants in Melbourne doing the brain fry or rather doing it right so I was particularly excited with this one. It was almost like scrambled eggs but ofcourse, you get the flavour of the lamb. Cooked really well with the right balance of flavours from the spices. Recommended if you like to eat lamb brains!

Beef Nihari - Man-O-Salwa, Melbourne - a review on

Lamb brain fry - Man-O-Salwa, Melbourne - a review on

There was a whole fried fish on the menu which I really wanted to try out but apparently, you need to place the order a day before. So keep that in mind if you are keen to try it out.

And ofcourse, the biryani; how can you bypass this dish if you have Indian blood in your veins! So we ordered the goat biryani and not disappointed at all. Perfectly cooked rice with that subtle hint of saffron and spices, goat cooked tender and juicy; yet another dish that comes highly recommended from me. The only negative was that there were no accompaniments to the biryani like a raita or salan.

Goat biryani - Man-O-Salwa, Melbourne - a review on

Coming to desserts, there is a small but really good choice. We decided to try out the kulfis and the falooda, both traditional desserts popular in both India and Pakistan.

So we tried the pistachio and the paan kulfi. Yumm is the word! Both were creamy, delicious and so flavourful; really good stuff especially the paan flavour. The falooda was also delicious, very good portion with all the layers of the vermicelli/sev, sweet basil seeds, nuts, icecream and that final drizzle of Rooh Afza. Again a must try!

Kulfis - Man-O-Salwa, Melbourne -

Falooda - Man-O-Salwa, Melbourne - a review on

Overall, a very satisfying and delicious experience. The only negative is the service. As it started getting busy, the staff was almost forcing us to eat faster and get out of the place. There was a certain impatience exhibited which does not really sit well.


333A Clayton Road,
Melbourne, VIC
Phone no: 03 9544 1005


Monday – Thursday: 4pm to midnight
Friday – 12pm to midnight
Saturday, Sunday – 10am to midnight

Man-o-Salwa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclaimer – All the food and drinks were paid for by me and my friends.





Goan Fish Biryani

 Easter holidays are here and all of us are in the mood for some fun time with family and friends. And celebrations always mean great food!

Whether you are celebrating this Holy Festival or not, this weekend is a perfect time to gather around a table with your loved ones and relax over some good food. And today’s dish, the Goan style fish biryani is just the perfect one for that.



The most unique thing about this fish biryani is the addition of grated coconut and black kokum. Though red kokum is used traditionally, I have used black kokum or kudampuli in this one. Medium sized fish like small seer fish or mackerel is best suited for this biryani preparation.

Unlike the meat biryanis which are usually heavy in spices and aromatics, this Goan fish biryani is light but with a bang of flavours from the whole spices, coconut and kokum. It has the distinct coastal flavour stamp which transports you the land of sun and surf – Goa!

And what a delicious way to use kokum, especially the black variety. If you have red kokum, use it by all means but the black also provides that delicious tangy addition which pairs so beautifully with coconut. It’s the play of sweet n’ sour!




1. For the rice:
• 4 cups, long grained basmati rice; soaked
• 3 green cardamom
• 1 black cardamom

For full recipe, click here….

Recipe developed, shot and styled for Supreme Seafood

Egg Biryani

How can I even begin to explain what a biryani means to India? The singular rice dish which gets the nation into a culinary and cultural frenzy. The debates are endless…and democracy gets chucked out of the window! Is our biryani better or yours?

Every state of India has a biryani recipe or rather, a style of making biryani. It is amazing that a dish introduced to India by the Arab traders has become the national dish today. I really wouldn’t go into the history or types of biryani; Google and Wiki can do a good job of it.

Though you can find plenty of recipes for egg biryani all across the web, I decided to post this one because I loved the dish and wanted it to be a part of my collection here.

Egg biryani - an aromatic, mildly spiced fragrant rice dish from India -

The best thing about egg biryani is that it is the perfect crossover between vegetarian and non-vegetarian. More people are egg-tarian these days and this is a delicious way to enjoy it. It is also perfect for days when you want to go meatless yet want some bold flavours on your plate.

No biryani recipe will look simple; there’s usually a ton of ingredients and steps but believe me, if you systematically follow it, this is one of the simplest dishes to cook. And the only accompaniment you need is a bowl of raita or yoghurt dip.

So let’s get cooking this delicious, aromatic and flavourful egg biryani!

I learnt this recipe from here.


1. 1 cup of basmati/long grained white rice
2. ghee/clarified butter
3. 1 inch cinnamon
4. 2 cloves
5. 2 green cardamom
6. 1 star anise
7. 2 dried bay leaf
8. ½ cup fresh coriander leaves/cilantro
9. ½ cup fresh mint leaves
10. 2 green chillies
11. 5 cloves garlic
12. 2 inch ginger root
13. 1.5 cups of large onions, finely sliced
14. ½ cup ripe tomato, chopped
15. 1 tsp red chilli powder (adjust to taste)
16. ¼ tsp turmeric powder
17. 1 tsp cumin/jeera powder
18. 1 tsp fennel/perinjeera/saunf powder
19. 1 tsp roasted coriander powder
20. 1 cups thick coconut milk
21. 1 tsp garam masala (adjust to taste)
22. 3 eggs, hard boiled and halved
23. ¼ cup roasted cashewnuts
24. ¼ cup raisins
25. 1 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped, for garnish
26. 1 tbsp mint leaves, finely chopped, for garnish


1. Wash and soak the rice for at least 2 hours prior to cooking. Drain thoroughly before cooking.
2. Grind the coriander leaves, mint leaves, green chillies, 1 inch ginger and 3 cloves garlic into a paste and keep aside.
3. Grind the remaining ginger and garlic to a fine paste and keep aside.
4. Hard boil the eggs, shell and cut into halves.
5. In a large pan, heat 2 tbsp ghee and lightly roast the cashewnuts and raisins; drain and keep aside.
6. In the same pan, add ½ cup of sliced onions and fry till golden brown; drain and keep aside.
7. Add the remaining ghee to the pan, and add the whole spices
8. After about 15 seconds or when the spices turn fragrant, add the ground green paste and lightly fry on medium heat for a minute.
9. Add the rice along with enough water to just cook the rice (refer to packet instructions for the rice or use 1:1 ration for long grained basmati rice). Season with salt and bring to boil. Once the rice is done, remove from flame and lightly fluff with a fork so that the rice does not turn mushy.
10. In a deep or heavy bottom pan, heat 2 tbsp ghee and add the remaining sliced onions. When the onions turn soft, add the ginger garlic paste and continue to sauté.
11. As this browns, add the powdered spices and sauté for another minute. Then add the chopped tomatoes and sauté till the tomatoes turn soft and mushy.
12. Reduce flame and add coconut milk along with ½ cup water. Simmer for about 5 minutes and add garam masala and season with salt.
13. Next, add the cooked rice to this pan and lightly mix so that you get a marbled effect to the rice.
14. Place the boiled eggs on top and garnish with the roasted cashewnuts, raisins, fried onions, coriander and mint leaves.
15. Remove from heat and keep covered for at least one hour for the flavours to blend and come together.




Egg biryani - an aromatic, mildly spiced fragrant rice dish from India -

Bombay Biryani


Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! Such an overrated day (my opinion!) but it is kinda hard to miss it. Suddenly, the world around you has burst into pink…..

I have never celebrated Valentine’s Day in my life, not when I fell in love or after marriage. I have never received or given a Valentine’s Day gift either. And the day passes by for me just like any other beautiful day God has blessed me with.

Being non-judgmental, most people love to spend the day in a special way with their loved one. Gifts, flowers, chocolates, fancy dinners etc… etc…


This recipe has nothing to do with Valentine’s day but if someone asks me what dish would I make to bring on a full 100 watt smile on my hubby’s face, the answer is – biryani. Usually I make the Arcot style lamb biryani at home but when I saw this Sanjeev Kapoor recipe, it reminded me of the tawa pulao which we enjoyed a lot while we lived in Pune, India. This Bombay biryani called for boneless chicken pieces but I decided to use chicken legs/drumsticks for this dish.

Quite a different style of preparation, I have no clue as to the history of this dish because I have never eaten it before. But the dish came out beautifully and we enjoyed it to the very last morsel. So if your hubby/loved one is as crazy about biryani like mine, then you ought to try out this one.


Delightfully light, loaded with flavour, succulent chicken legs and simple to make!! A sure hit with all the biryani lovers…..



1. Basmati/long grained rice – 4 cups; washed, soaked and drained
2. Chicken legs/drumsticks – 8-10, depending on size
3. Vegetable oil
4. Red onion – 6 large, sliced
5. Potatoes – 2 large, sliced
6. Garlic paste – 2 tsp
7. Tomatoes – 3, chopped
8. Roasted cumin powder – 3 tsp
9. Red chilli powder – 3 tsp
10. Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
11. Ginger – 1 inch, cut into thin strips
12. Yoghurt/curd – 1 cup
13. Salt – to season
14. Kewra essence – a few drops
15. Garam masala – 1 tbsp.


• Heat enough oil in a pan for deep-frying the onion slices. Fry half of the sliced onions till golden-brown, drain on absorbent paper and keep aside.
• Deep-fry the potatoes in the same oil till light brown, drain and keep aside.
• Heat 4-5 tbsp oil in another deep pan; add the remaining onions and garlic paste. Saute on medium heat will the onions have turned translucent and light brown.
• Add the tomatoes and sauté again till the oil clears and then add the cumin powder, chilli powder and turmeric powder. Add the chicken pieces and mix well. Cook on medium heat for 2 minutes.
• Add 8 cups of water (2 cups of water for 1 cup of rice), season with salt and bring to boil.
• Then add the potatoes, ginger strips, curd and cook for another 5 minutes.
• Add the drained rice and cook on high flame for 5 minutes.
• Lower the heat and cook for another 10 minutes or till most of the water has been absorbed.
• Layer the top of the rice with the fried onions, kewra water and garam masala. Cook covered on low heat till the rice is completely done.
• Mix just before serving. Best accompanied with raita/yoghurt dip, pickles and roasted pappad.






Lamb Biriyani (Arcot style)

Wishing all my friends and followers a Happy, Blessed and Cheerful Christmas.

I wasn’t too sure if I will get time to post anything on Christmas day as we had originally planned to throw a party for some friends. But that plan got postponed and so we ended up celebrating a quiet, family Christmas this year – just the three of us.

My husband hails from a place called Vellore in Tamil Nadu, India which is ‘famous’ for its biriyani. In fact, no function in any Christian household is complete without a lamb or chicken biriyani. After marriage, the only dish my hubby asked me to learn from his mother is the lamb biriyani she makes…which I did and make quite rather well now.


This lamb biriyani is prepared in the Arcot style which is famous as a spicy and very flavorsome dish. Lamb is often the meat of choice but chicken can also be used instead. The meat is first half cooked with spices and aromatics; it is then cooked completely along with rice and other whole spices to complete the dish. Like I mentioned, this biriyani is spicy and very flavourful, not really for those with faint-hearted taste buds. And the classic accompaniments for this lamb biriyani is cucumber-carrot raita and oil brinjal (small, baby brinjals prepared with spices)


So no more talking – let’s get cooking this awesome lamb biriyani.


For the rice:

1. Long grained rice – 1 kg, washed and drained
2. Red onion – 4-5, sliced thinly
3. Tomato – 4-5, sliced
4. Ginger paste – 1 ½ tbsp
5. Garlic paste – 1 ½ tbsp
6. Bay leaf – 2
7. Clove – 6
8. Cardamom – 6
9. Cinnamon bark – ½ inch
10. Peppercorns – 10
11. Green chillies (whole) – 10
12. Curry leaves – a handful
13. Coriander leaves – 1 cup, chopped finely
14. Mint leaves – 1 cup, chopped finely
15. Curd – 2 tsp
16. Turmeric powder – 1 tbsp
17. Red chilli powder – 1 tbsp
18. Salt – to taste
19. Ghee – 3-4 tbsp
20. Oil – 2 tbsp

For the lamb:

1. Lamb/mutton pieces – 1 kg, cut into curry sized pieces
2. Red onion – 1, sliced
3. Tomato – 1 sliced
4. Ginger paste – 1 tsp
5. Garlic paste – 1 tsp
6. Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
7. Pepper – ½ tsp
8. Red chilli powder – ½ tsp
9. Garam masala – ¼ tsp
10. Salt – to taste



• Pressure cook the mutton pieces (2-3 whistles; meat should be 3/4th cooked) along with the rest of the ingredients and a little water till soft and tender.
• Keep a large non-stick handi (deep-bottomed pan) on medium heat and add ghee and oil.
• Once the oil has become moderately hot, add bay leaf, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon and peppercorns and crackle
• Then add the sliced onions and sauté.
• As the onion becomes translucent, add the ginger-garlic paste and sauté again.
• Add curry leaves and whole chillies. Saute again.
• Once the onions have turned golden brown, add sliced tomatoes and sauté again for 2 minutes on high flame.
• Turn to medium heat and add chopped coriander leaves and mint leaves.
• As the oil clears, add turmeric powder and red chilli powder.
• Add curd and then lower the heat.
• Next, add the cooked mutton pieces. Measure the broth and add this too to the masala.
• Add the remaining amount of water (water: rice ratio is 2:1 if basmati or long grain rice is used.)
• Add salt to taste and bring to boil.
• Add the washed rice and mix well.
• Turn to high heat and cook covered for 5 minutes.
• Remove lid and mix well, turn heat to low and cook till the rice is done and all the water is absorbed.
• Turn off heat and let sit for a while before removing the lid.
• Garnish with chopped coriander leaves, fried onions and cashewnuts. Serve hot.


Once again, Merry Christmas to all of you.


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