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A quick, satisfying meal

Friday, December 28, 2018

KOKO's newly introduced lunch specials are ideal for rushed but delicious meals on a working day

If you are at Parel, and in a rush but want a great meal, head to KOKO at the Kamala Mills Compound. The Asian fine dine restaurant recently introduced lunch specials that are quick, filling and definitely value-for-money. With Head Chef Eric Khoo Thiam Huat (better known as Eric Sifu, meaning ‘Master’) supervising these specials, you can be sure they are authentic too. “Try the Hainanese chicken bowl,” urges the genial chef who once dispensed chicken-rice in Singapore, and who has been in our city for three years now, introducing Mumbaikars to true Oriental cuisine.

The menu is available Monday to Friday from 12-3pm, and all the non-veg options are priced at Rs 1,000. The veg options are for Rs 900 (Taxes and service charge on both extra). What makes this value for money is that while the bowls have substantial portions and three people can easily share two of them, they also come with home-made miso soup, Asian salad, dim sum, sushi and tiny portions of the house dessert, all artistically served on a wooden tray.

The Hainanese Chicken Rice, which is KOKO’s version of the iconic Singaporean dish, is one of the highlights. It features succulent, steamed chicken served with fragrant rice and is accompanied by a garlic-chilli dip and ginger relish. It was a little spicy for our taste-buds but if you like your food hot, as many people do, go for it!

Or try the Cantonese Tenderloin Rice Bowl where the tenderloin is cooked with edamame, bok choy and oyster sauce, poured over jasmine rice and served with a fried egg on top.  And if you like to try dishes that are not easily available everywhere, choose the Hoisin Duck Rice, a hearty bowl of tender duck served with fragrant rice, homemade hoisin sauce and garnished with cucumber and coriander. 

Vegetarians get their due as well, with three choices. These are the Silken Tofu Rice Bowl, tossed with Luffa, Pok Choy and a vegetarian oyster sauce; the Soya Bean Fragrant rice, done up with edamame, pok choy, Schezuan vegetables and the veg oyster sauce on jasmine rice; plus the Char Kuay Teow, which Chef Eric is particularly proud of. This is the vegetarian version of the Malaysian classic that comprises rice cake strips stir-fried with bean sprouts, mushrooms, chives and szechuan vegetables tossed in KOKO’s special seasoned woks.

With a meal like that, served in double-quick time, we were in and out of the restaurant in 45 minutes, which makes it perfect for a quick lunch. 

With all that hearty food inside you though, a word of caution—try not to fall asleep when you get back to work!

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