Once you have tasted the traditional biriyani that is made in the Malabar region, you will be hooked. To its amazing flavors, the taste and texture. The same holds good for the other delicacies like unnakkaya, kilikoodu, muttapathiri and other savories made in the region. And, it is but natural for someone who has tasted this fare to search for it in other parts of Kerala.
So, where do gourmets find their share of Malabar cuisine in Kottayam?
1) Mahe Cafe
A crowd has gathered at the ground floor of Triveni Complex near Bhima Jewellery on T. B. Road. They are waiting for food parcels from Mahe Cafe, owned by Mahe native V. R. Jamaal. The Cafe, which operates from 8 am to 8 pm, offers Malabar biriyani for Rs 70 at noon. The establishment doesn’t have much space for tables, and hence most of its clientele prefer take-away parcels.
During Ramzan, the cafe also offers an iftar spread of Malabari specials, unnakkaya, muttappathiri, kilikkoodu, pazham nirachathu, kaypola, chatty pathiri, egg sandwich and stuffed bun, besides cutlets, samosa, banana fritters and other snacks.
2)A. M. Bakers
Their catch line, The Taste of Malabar, tells it all. Owned by a family in Thalassery, A. M. Bakers have footprints in Kanjikuzhy, Baker Junction and C. M. S. College Junction. Piping hot biriyanis will be available for Rs 125 for lunch. Ramzan specials erachipathiri, aripathiri, unnakkaya and chicken curry, too, are available.
3) Malabar Plaza
Thalassery native H. M. Rauf has many takers for his fried-chicken biriyani, which he serves from 11 am to 10 pm. Established six years ago, he also sells fish biriyani depending on the availability of pomfret and seer fish. While fish biriyani could be had for Rs 200, the chicken-based one is sold at Rs 120.
4) K. R. Bakes
Valancherry, Malappuram native A Balachandran floated his K. R. Bakers two years ago in Kottayam. Besides bakery items, he also offers chicken and mutton biriyanis for Rs 135 and Rs 180, respectively. Party orders can be placed in advance, and in such cases, fish biriyani, priced at Rs 200 a plate, too, will be made available. Besides a new outlet near Nehru Stadium, K. R. Bakers has its branches in four places, including Pala and Changanassery.
Bonus eatout Sunday special biriyani
On Sundays, you can take away the authentic taste of Malabar from the bakery Al Mubarak owned by Thalassery native Abdul Waheed and his wife Fausiya. The outlet, located at C.C.S. Junction on Erayilkadavu Road near Malayala Manorama, sells biriyani packets for Rs 90. Their menu also includes unnakkaya, kaypola, erachipathiri, chattipathiri and other homemade Malabari items. Fausiya herself prepares them for an authentic touch.