Day 11: Kerala to Hyderabad

smog
smog and chaos

This morning we had a plan – go up to the guesthouse breakfast and just eat fruit and drink a little coffee/tea! Genius. Then nobody will try to force anything else on us. So we skipped the toast and hard boiled egg but did try a steamed rice bun with a little coconut and sugar inside that was pretty tasty. We asked what it was called but couldn’t parse the answer so we’ll have to do a little research…or anyone who reads this and knows, please let us know.

breakfast
breakfast

Off we went for last minute site seeing and then to wait for the bus to the airport. The bus is so, so easy and took the same amount of time as a cab for 1/10 the cost. So, for future visitors to Kochi, we recommend that as your means of transport. While waiting for the bus M scouted around for chai street snacks, never too far away. We had a variety of fried things – a delicious sweet banana fritter (again it was cold and we would have loved it hot but took what we could get), a samosa shaped snack filled with onions in both caramelized and lightly cooked form with a great mix of spices, and a fried cake-like item with a hint of cardamom. Once we tasted it, B sent M back for a little more chai.and seconds later the bus pulled up. Luckily it had to sit for a few minutes but there was still some momentary panic. All was well in the end and we got on the bus with our cake and chai. Yum!

 

fried snack
samosas and banana fritters
fried sweet bread
fried sweet bread

After a quick flight to Hyderabad and a check in at our hotel (HOT water for the first time in days!!) we took a tuk tuk over to Bawarchi on RTC Cross Road, home of some of the highest rated Biryani in Hyderabad. And that’s saying something since it is a specialty of the area and the main reason we traveled here. There was some confusion when we got there over which way to go in, but finally made it through the omnipresent metal detectors (we’ve gone through so many on this trip and they always seem to go off no matter what) and up to the rooftop dinner area. It was nice to get a bit above the street fumes, which are terrible. Once inside we saw signs everywhere saying that this was the ‘real’ Bawarchi and that they had no branches. There seems to be absolutely no control over what you name your restaurant. We passed by at least three other Bawarchi’s on our way in from the airport and there is a Great Bawarchi across the street from our hotel. It can get a little confusing if you don’t know where you’re headed. Now I’ll get to the food – the biryani (we had mutton) was absolutely delicious. It had a wonderful side gravy and yogurt and the rice had a wonderful ghee and spice flavor to it. The meat was melt in your mouth tender. We also ordered Hyderabadi Chicken, which was also great. There were green bell peppers in the sauce that were a really pronounced flavor and we’re not usually fans of green peppers, but these added a really nice note to the curry leaf sauce. Two different rotis on the side (one basically our first naan in India!) and a sweet lassi that unfortunately brought B back to her childhood drinking Milk of Magnesia (M liked it a bit more) and we’re all set. Another fantastic meal.

biryani
mutton biryani

 

curry and naan
hyderbadi chicken and naan

 

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