Cancelled Elvis Chicken

Post date: 01-Nov-2013 21:14:39

22nd June 2019

People often ask me my favourite foods. Actually, I think that if I was stuck with the left overs of only one supperclub, this would be the one I would choose. I always struggle to decide which dishes we should put on the menu. It's also the supperclub that put us on the foodie map, all those years ago, with our first ever rave review from a professional food critic from the Square Meal Guide.

Many of our recipes have stories around them that keep them close to our hearts. Perhaps they come from my family or that of a friend. Some even come from supperclub guests.

And some developed their own stories as we cooked them.

One such dish is our Cancelled Elvis Chicken. We were going to watch an Indian Elvis at a restaurant in Brick Lane, however on short notice he was cancelled, so we decided we’d rather go home and test out some Indian recipes, rather than eat a standard Brick Lane Curry. Of those recipes, the chicken with black pepper was exceptional, as voted by all the Elvis-missers, and has become forever known as Cancelled Elvis Chicken. I still have never seen an Indian Elvis impersonator.

Another is a dal that came from a palace I stayed at in Rajasthan. It won “boutique hotel of the year” that year and their dal, a royal family recipe, was exceptional. I asked everyone for the recipe daily, and eventually some enterprising chap showed up with it scribbled down on a scrap of paper just as I was about to leave. He was tipped a royal ransom :-)

My Dhokla came from the mother of a Gujarati friend, who used to make it for me. I still remember sitting with her in her white sari in her kitchen, before she died, trying to figure out how many mls there were in the teacup with the broken handle and what size one of her ordinary teaspoons actually was. I’ve eaten many Dhoklas since and hers is still the best, by a very long way. I hope she’s looking down on us now, proud. It’s her Moong Dal recipe too.

I love curries and in particular fish curries. A recent addition to our repertoire came from our “official” recipe scout Donald, who is one of the most travelled people I know and who knows that he’s always expected to bring back a recipe. The fabulous prawn curry he brought back to us from Brunton Boatyard, a heritage hotel in Fort Cochin, has hit our tastebuds in a big way – we tested it at a volunteers’ supper and were only just barely able to eat it with about 1/3 the chilli powder that was in the recipe! We've cut that down now.

On the menu will be: (at least this! maybe more!!) I have so many amazing curry recipes I want to make them all - but it will be nothing like normal Indian restaurant fare, that we can definitely tell you.

2 traditional vegetarian Gujarati snacks - Handvo and Dhokla - served with Pomegranate Raita (v)

Dal Rajwali that actual one from Rajasthan – this one is rich and velvety and enriched with cream (v)

Cancelled Elvis Chicken - we’ve lost its original name now. It will be forever Elvis.

Pineapple Curry Fresh Pineapple curry with Fresh grated coconut - people always ask for this recipe but you need to grate your own fresh coconut! (v)

Himalayan Lamb Curry made with yoghurt - one of my favourites

Moong Dal - a delicious vegetarian Mung Bean recipe in a tomatoey sauce (v)

Brunton Boatyard’s Aleppy Prawn Curryyum! Another one creamy with coconut milk and fenugreek

Channa Masala – I didn’t actually know chickpeas could be so delicious. It was the staff meal at The India Club, better than anything on the menu. (v)

Saag Paneer - our own version of a spinach and cheese curry that always has people coming back for more! (v)

Cauliflower in Mustard Seeds (v)

home made chapatis (v)

Kheer - Indian rice pudding made with coconut milk and other delicious things. I had an Indian guest once who said my kheer was his favourite :-)

The price of this supperclub will be £45, of which £35 will go direct to Medecins Sans Frontieres.Please mail us with bookings on