Some eat to live, and some live to eat. If you are one true explorer of authentic flavours, add attending Marathwada Mejwani to your to-do list at Zambar in Gurgaon. By Nidhi Kandari

This food carnival has brought in the magical flavours of Maharashtra all the way to the state capital. Not only that, Zambar has brought to us Home Chef Sunita Rajendra Sanglikar — the brainchild behind this delectable menu.

Once you enter Zambar,you will be overwhelmed with the warm hospitality. As I settled down, I was offered the special Marathi menu. I started with a cold glass of mattha — sweet and salty frothy curd-based drink with a topping of boondi. Next up was the quintessential missal pav. It literally transported me back to the streets of aamchi Mumbai. After savouring on this street-food delicacy, I was served a traditional Marathi thali. There were options for both vegetarian and non-vegetarian lovers; and I opted for a non-vegetarian thali; it comprised fish fry, chicken curry, aamti, pithla, eggplant curry, raita, rice, daal and jowar ki roti. To satiate my sweet-tooth craving, I indulged in a portion of mouth-watering shrikhand.

The food has a very homely feel to it — finely made, presented and served. There was a quintessential tinge of sweetness in all the food items and the spices had been mellowed down to suit the palette. If you don’t mind the hotness, I’ll suggest to let the staff know.

Out of all the scrumptious dishes I had, my top picks would be:

1. Pithla – also known as the farmer’s meal is an absolutely simple dish with gram flour as the primary ingredient.

2. Puran Poli – a sweet parantha stuffed with jaggery, cardamom and made in ghee.

3. Shrikhand – a sweet yogurt dish with hints of cardamom and saffron, eaten with piping hot puris.

Home Chef Sunita credits her maternal grandmother for inspiring and teaching her the craft of cooking. With full support from her family she has been running a successful catering business for the last 30 years in Aurangabad, and now has brought her culinary treasures to Zambar in Ambience Mall, Gurgaon till the 17th of March.

Related:Find Out What Is Chef Julien Royer’s Favourite Indian Food!