For roughly a decade, chef Harsh Dixit has been building the Panda Gang — an ode to the much-adored Po from Kung Fu Panda — by serving up flavours from Asia. Dixit, the #PandaGang-represent, counts the likes of Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli, among other celebrated names, as part of his ever-growing tribe. And this December, pav-loving Mumbaikars can join the club too, thanks to Pack-a-Pav’s limited-edition dining series, Pav With Friends.
Dan dan mutton and brun pav with green garlic butter
The series was kicked off in 2016, and features chefs who lend their signature touch to the humble pav at their Bandra outlet. The Panda Gang edition of Pav With Friends, curated by Dixit, will offer people seven pavs from an Asia-inspired menu that packs in influences from China, Singapore, Korea, Japan and India. “I’ve always been fond of Asian-style cooking; my foundation was in a Cantonese restaurant, and I’m known for my fun take on Asian food. But this menu is inclusive of flavours from across [eastern] Asia,” he shares.
The series brings together three vegetarian options including a meatless version of mapo tofu kheema alongside brun pav with green garlic butter; corn on crack pav, a spin on the classic corn curd, served with a traditional sukkha chutney; and banoffee pav with banana, miso caramel, whipped cream and lotus biscoff. “We’re doing something with brun pav for the first time. It’s a hat-tip to this pav that we’ve grown up eating at Irani cafes,” he reasons.
Kaya brun toast and soy gel
For meat lovers, there’s dan dan mutton kheema and brun pav with green garlic butter; smash shrimp patty, sesame and schezwan pav; Korean fried chicken, pickled cucumbers and kimchi ketchup pav; and kaya brun toast and soy gel. The latter, he says, is an attempt to bring a slice of Singapore to Bandra. “Kaya jam [made with coconut, eggs and pandan leaves] is a Singaporean breakfast staple, while brun is a favourite in Mumbai. So, we’re serving the kaya jam with brun pav and soy gel,” he shares.
Chef Harsh Dixit
The menu also brings together Dixit’s fermentation techniques, affinity to local ingredients, and efforts towards a zero-waste kitchen. “We’re trying to make the most of all our ingredients. For instance, we’re using the hair of green garlic that’s typically tossed away in the mapo tofu, while the shell of prawns is being used to make butter and cook the smash shrimp patty,” he says, inviting people to try the fare, share some smiles, and maybe strike a #PandaGang pose too.
From: December 3 to 5 (pre-orders for delivery start today); 12 pm to 10 pm
At: Pack-a-Pav, next to New India General Store, St Andrews Road, off Pali Naka, Bandra West
Cost: Rs 200 onwardsInternet Explorer Channel Network