you like crab? you like it fresh? you like it well marinated, salty spiced? you like it dry fried? head on to ‘calicut paragon’ in karama for the best dry fry crab you will ever taste, and a host of other kerala dishes too.
*kerala is one of the states in india
the one we went is in karama, opposite lulu center and in the same row as another popular indian restaurant. the restaurant is spacious, well-lit and despite the slight berkuap and strong curry smell; it’s fairly comfy to bring a family of 3 young boys and a stroller.
as usual, most indian and arab restaurants in dubai will have a designated closed section or an entirely different floor just for family. this is one of the best features of a restaurant in dubai. nak makan pun selesa, anak bising pun tak kacau orang sebelah.
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whatever dish you have in mind to order at ‘calicut paragon’, i highly recommend that you start with this green dish called ‘spinach delight’. don’t let the simplicity fool you, this appetizer is mighty delicious. just imagine a tempura spinach – indian style!
it’s fried to the crisp, crunchy to the taste, and when you dip it in the homemade chilli, fantastic! i told mr. khairul we could go back here JUST to have this plate of ‘spinach delight’ for minum petang!
dry fry crab
..and this is the dish that we came here for. if you’re a crab-fan, don’t miss trying this dry fry crab when you’re at ‘calicut paragon’.
it’s marinated to perfection, and spiced well. the bits of crumbs on the plate floor adds to the appeal of this dish. mr. khairul was disturbingly quiet the entire time as he ravaged through the delicious dry fry crab. literally tak toleh kiri kanan!
i only get to taste one bite! but that’s just because i’m no fan of this side-walking creature of the sea. i’ll let the real crab-freak finish this one!
the crab cracker : to break the crab shell
the dish below is grilled hamour if i’m not mistaken – and i have to admit, that ONLY after having this delicious meal that i discovered that hamour is on the verge of extinction!
oh no, i’ve actually eaten an endangered sea-creature! they’re endangered because it is the most popular marine dish in the nation, and it’s been fished out many times more that its sustainable level. also, despite government’s effort to save the hamour, the markets in dubai are still selling baby hamour…
it’s SO delicious – the marination, the very soft texture of the fish that melts in your mouth… – but we have to stop eating them! hmm, if the marination is part of what makes the fish taste so yummy, i’m sure it’ll work with other fish, right?
what do we eat all the yummy lauk with? a plate of ghee rice! i love the idea of cooking rice with ghee because i know how good it taste, but i don’t like raisins in rice. besides being a hassle (i have to pick up every single one and put them aside) it also gives my rice a sickeningly sweet taste.
to some people, the raisins might be the ‘life’ of the rice since it adds sweetness to the rice. but for me, no-no. me no likey. i like the taste of the rice, but the raisins are in my way of enjoying it fully!
the accompaniments : this white yoghurt dip with cut up tomatoes, cucumber and onion is great with popadom (the crunchy snack). mr. khairul doesn’t fancy it, but i do!
khaleef LOVES mandi rice, but he doesn’t like biryani rice or this ghee rice. so we ordered apam for the boys. the chicken curry that came along was fine, nicely thick and a little spicy, but the apam could be more crunchier along the sides.
for a much, much much BETTER apam, i suggest you go to ‘appa kadai’ instead. they’re the king of apams! read my review on ‘appa kadai’ here.
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drinks wise, i always, always go for normal mineral water ‘room temperature’ haha. on rare occasion i would order juice or pepsi, but 90 percent of the time, it’s simply mineral water for me.
for mr. khairul, it’s chai. or tea. or teh tarik. here in ‘calicut paragon’, its tea is called ‘biryani chai’. hmm? biryani? tea? dengar nama pun macam berlemak je minuman ni! mr. khairul absolutely loved it. one of the best chai around town.
maybe you can enjoy this tall glass of hot biryani chai, while munching the ‘spanish delight’ dipped in homemade chilli sauce. yum.