Homemade is true happiness! I’ve had an old association with Goa and at some level, it qualifies as home food for me! The duo behind Julia’s Goan kitchen is Mini, a lawyer by profession and an extremely passionate cook and her daughter, Meher, a marketing professional, who is the business brain behind the brand, Julia's Goan Kitchen. Mini got all her cooking chops from her mother, Dr Maria Julia Leela De Sequeira Gill, who grew up in a Goan Catholic family where mealtimes were a big deal. She carried that with her into her own home cooking whenever possible. Being a medical professional, she found cooking therapeutic which was not an easy task for an army wife posted in small towns. Her legacy is now carried on by using family recipes inherited from Doña Lilia (Julia’s mother).
I feel backstories like these, carry so much ‘flavour’ when it comes to the food of a home chef’s kitchen. The menu has all the classics -- from Rissois de Camarao, which are soft as cotton prawn ‘cutlets’ of sorts and Rava Fried Fish Recheado, which are fillets of fish stuffed with homemade Recheado masala, pan-fried with a coating of rava (semolina). In starters, they also have Goan Prawn Chilli Fry using green chillies, which I absolutely loved, I could eat these prawns like peanuts.
The mains don’t disappoint, the Chicken Cafreal has the aroma of fresh herbs used in the green masala marinade. Though I personally loved the Goan Fish Curry and the Mutton Xacuti the most, very home style and very authentic, these dishes come with options to switch up the meats or keep them vegetarian as well. I tried the Chourico too, best enjoyed with steamed rice. For vegetarians, they have Bhindi Recheado and Patal Bhaji which is an interesting dish, it is a Goan-Hindu dish made with white peas and coconut. All these dishes can be paired with Chourico Pulao or their home-baked Goan Pao, making the menu wholesome and complete.