The Malcolm Baug Parsi Pop-Up
Had a fascinating time at Malcolm Baug,Jogeshwari,thanks to the invitation of my friend Perzen Darukhanawala Patel (also known as Bawi Bride) at the lovely Jer Villa.Baugs are colonies set up by Parsis,mainly the N.M. Wadia Trust and this one is so named as it was bought from an Englishman named Malcolm.This was earlier a hunting ground.We were privy to these lovely stories, thanks to the presence of our friends and archaeologists Kurush and Rhea Mitra Dalal.Malcolm Baug has been developed like a hill station and has quaint bungalows with lovely gardens.
Baugs were set up for needy Parsis by Bai Jerbai Wadia and her sons.Others include Cusrow Baug,Navroz Baug,Rustom Baug,Jer Baug and Ness Baug which are gated communities that have buildings and gardens.A nominal rent is collected but the upkeep is undertaken by the trust.
Arrived there with my lovely food blogger friend Romi,her humorous hubbie Gaurav (actor,anchor and of the radio station Fever) and India Food Network editor Kalyan with his inseparable Candies bag.We passed many tabelas on the way cos that's what Jogeshwari is famous for and once we were in Malcolm Baug,it was a whole new world.
It's the sort of place that you would like to get up to in the morning to hear birds chirping and sit in the garden and sip your morning tea slowly!
Chalk and rangoli are typical of Parsi homes as are glass bead torans on the doorway
There were the classic Parsi beverages: Raspberry and Icecream Soda
and some delightful Kheema Kababs based on Perzen's grandfather's recipe.
The meal was not your standard Parsi fare.Perzen had prepared delicious food
There was a Parsi favorite: Chicken and Cheese Pasta
Sali Per Eedu Cupcakes
Prawn Pulao and Dahi Mutton
Met Kai and Zoran,two brothers.Kai works for Zomato (a food app everyone has today on their phones) and Zoran is an actor and can be seen in many adfilms.He too writes a blog called the Local Outsider .They spoke of the outstanding Wedding lunch that the bridal party has consisting of Dhandar Patio and Fish.They declared they wouldn't mind getting married even three times ....just for the wedding food :D Any event they have to attend,they only ask what's on the menu and never who is coming.... :)
Shireen and Kaiyaan and their friends run the Zoroastrian Return To Your Roots Programme which seeks to educate Parsis about their culture and takes them to places all over India to see places of historical significance.Wonderful isn't it? Having studied abroad and missed their culture,these friends thought about setting up this programme.Perzen went the last time and had a blast,specially discovering the gems in Parsi Cuisine.Read here about her intriguing journey
Met up with my friend Roxanne Bamboat who shares my love for jungles and food,not necessarily in that order! She writes as The Tiny Taster and has visited an amazing number of countries and tried exotic things like Goose Barnacles (which is actually seafood).Made a new half-Parsi friend...Divya who writes BlehLoves Food on her foodie adventures.Also caught up with Rituparna and her hubbie Salil who work for India Food Network and Conde Nast respectively.They have recently returned from Himachal and stayed in quaint home stays and had Kangri Dham food.Read here about it.
It was an afternoon of much jest and laughter!
Unbelievable that we found such a paradise in Mumbai.....quiet and tree laden! That's the beauty of Mumbai and its cities within!