Most Keralites love a fish curry or fish fry for lunch. Then how about visiting a restaurant that has fish as an ingredient in all its items for lunch, except papadam and payasam?
You can taste fish in traditional Kerala dishes like thoran, koottukari, olan and aviyal. Fish varieties like sardine, king fish (aykoora), red snapper (chempalli), prawns and anchovy add flavour to various curries served here. Fish can be tasted in even chutney powder and puliyinchi. There are 17 dishes on offer, including pickles, thoran and fry.
This veritable fish feast - sadhya – is served in Malabar area. To be precise, at Le Kanchees restaurant, near Calicut University in Malappuram district. That the fish feast has become a favourite among food lovers is evident from the huge crowd witnessed during lunch time at Le Kanchees. More than 600 patrons reach the restaurant on an average each day to enjoy the unique fare.
All items, except of course papadam and payasam, are prepared using prawns, mussels, seer fish, king fish, sardine, squid and other varieties. Dried fish are also added to the dishes. Customers can also taste hot and spicy seer fish pickle, side dish with prawns, sardine thoran, fish curry, fish vattichathu, fish fry and dried sardine chutney powder.
However, this fish feast is available only during the weekends – on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. This special lunch can be savoured at Rs 220. The fame of Le Kanchees’ lunch has spread far and wide attracting food lovers from all over. The lunch time is 11.30 am to 3.30 pm.
Le Kanchees is operated by Radhakrishnan, who has been in the catering business for long. He initially launched R K Kerala Catering after a stint as a faculty at the Food Craft Institute, where he had done a hotel management course. The catering unit was a huge success, which inspired Radhakrishnan to open Le Kanchees five years ago. It was his desire to try out something different from the usual fare that prompted him to introduce fish sadhya at the restaurant. Experience gained by travelling, and enjoying the local cuisine of those places, helped matters. The former hotel management student succeeded in his experiment to dabble with various tastes and introduce them to his patrons at the restaurant.
Numerous fish varieties, their different tastes and innovative fare should make foodies, especially fish lovers, plan a tour to Malappuram to enjoy the truly special sadhya at Le Kanchees.