Travel Secrets

Know Before You Go!



What is Rassolnik?

This traditional Russian soup is known to have existed as far back as the 15th century, when it was called ‘kalya’. Today, famous with the name Rassolnik, the authentic Russian dish is prepared mainly with veal and lamb kidneys (or pork and beef kidneys), pearl barley, sorrel leaves and some pickled cucumbers! Yes, you heard it right. A ‘pickle soup’ it is!


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No matter how bizarre it may sound, but this bribing Slavic blend is definitely a bowl of happiness.  Rassolnik or rassoljnik, as it is known, varies from family to family and region to region. Some include barley and potatoes and is so thick, a spoon can stand up in it. Others make it with prime cuts of meat instead of offal.

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Despite of all the variations, the belief behind the recipe stays common, i.e. it is the one of the easiest and surest way of curing hangovers!  This is due to the fact that this savory soup helps the body to hold water and counteract the dehydration produced by over-imbibing, which causes hangovers.

Ever heard of an eatable Margarita?

No, this isn’t your traditional glass of tequila and fruit juice cocktail that you sip casually on a usual Friday evening. Doug Laming’s Margarita is definitely much more interesting than that! As suggested by the name, this cocktail was introduced by Molecular Mixologist, Doug Laming at his experimental lab i.e. Rabbit Hole Bar & Dining, Sydney.


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Laming uses ‘Cointreau Caviar Spherification’ to create spheres of Tequila, Cointreau and syrup, which results in little ‘pearls’ of alcohol that burst in the mouth!  While the glass is only there for decoration, to actually consume this margarita, one has to lift up the salt rimmed lime and eat the pink finger lime and the two types of the caviar pearls. One contains a Souza Gold tequila and sugar syrup and the other contains Cointreau. Basically, you eat these and lick the salted lime. It’s a margarita unlike any other kind that you may have had.


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Which is the most expensive cheese in the World?

Originated from Serbia, Pule cheese is made exclusively from the milk of Balkan donkeys. A characteristic feature of Serbian cuisine, Pule is not only extremely rare but also the most expensive cheese in the world. This exotic delicacy would cost you a whopping $576 for a pound!


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It takes 25 liters of donkey milk to produce just one kilogram of this white & crumbly smoked cheese. These donkeys are given the very best grass to eat and live as free rein as they can, living in the wilds of Serbia, they are farmed, milked and that results in this Serbian food-treasure!

A woman milks a donkey at a farm in Zasavica Resort, west of Belgrade

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Chef’s Secret: An offbeat potato recipe!

In the first edition of  our Chef’s Secret series, Tanveer Kwatra, Executive Chef, Le Meridien Gurgaon, takes us beyond French Fries.

Watch his interpretation of comfort food with this easy-to-make potato dish, in 90-seconds flat!

Bon Appétit!

Recipe: Swisind Chicken and Tomato Salad

MasterChef India season 2 Winner Shipra Khanna journeyed around the Alps and brought back a delicious mash up of Swiss and Indian flavours. Here’s what she has to say about her new masterpiece:

‘Cooking at the Alps! Unbelievable experience with Swiss tourism and Cox and kings..!Getting the Nations together with food..Created a new recipe “SwisInd Chicken” (Swiss and Indian flavors) ’.

Want to try it? Let’s help you make it first.


2 pieces Chicken (leg and thigh)

1tbsp chopped garlic

1tsp ginger finely minced

1 cup ground cashews

1 cup cream

1 cup milk

1/2 cup water

2 tbsp olive oil to sauté chicken

2 tsp freshly garam masala

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 tsp lime juice

SwisInd Chicken with spinach and tomato salad



  • In a bowl, marinate chicken with salt, pepper and lime juice and keep aside for 10 minutes.
  • In a pan heat oil and fry chicken till light golden in colour.
  • In another pan heat oil and sauté garlic and ginger till light brown ,then add cashews and sauté till light golden in colour.
  • Once done add garam masala and season with salt and pepper and add two cubes of butter to it mixing till well incorporated.
  • Add the fried chicken to it and along with it add Cream, milk and cook on low flame for 10 minutes.
  • Then add water and cook further for 10 minutes on medium flame.
  • While it is cooking, in a separate bowl toss spinach and cut cherry tomatoes in balsamic vinegar and olive oil season according to taste.
  • Once the chicken is cooked take the pieces out on a plate.
  • Sieve the gravy and serve the chicken with smooth gravy along with spinach salad.



Shipra Khanna has been taken on board by Tourism Australia and Cox & Kings as their culinary patron. Her culinary trail celebrates food and wine experiences in Switzerland with cookery sessions, local food market visits and MasterChef inspired recipes.


Help me with a simple recipe for panna cotta.

At your service! Here’s how to dish up Panna Cotta with Wild Berry Compote.

No of portions: 4


For Panna Cotta

300 ml Whipping cream

40 gr Sugar

1/3 no Vanilla pod

2 sheets Gelatin leaves

For wild berry compote

40 gr Frozen strawberries

40 gr Frozen blueberries

40 gr Frozen blackberries

50 gr Sugar

Hyatt Panna Cotta recipe

Method for preparation

Soak gelatin leaves in cold water.

Heat up cream gently, add sugar and vanilla.

Bring to a boil and take it off heat.

Add bloomed gelatin after removing excess water.

Allow the mixture to cool while mixing continuously.

Pour into individual portion glasses; let it set in the refrigerator.

Cook the berries with sugar to prepare thick compote.

Once Panna Cotta is set, pour some compote on top and garnish as desired.


Recipe courtesy: Executive Chef Adam Szczechura of the Kitchen District, Hyatt Regency, Gurgaon.

The Kitchen District, a multi cuisine restaurant  at Hyatt Regency Gurgaon serves a wide array of appetizing desserts. 

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