Foods to try in Goa - Delicacies of a lifetime

Our trip to Goa was an unexpected one. Not very well planned, needless to say we did not plan on the places to visit, places to dine etc. But the trip was a fabulous one, more for the food we got to try in Goa.

When I came back and discussed with my friends who were regulars in Goa, it was a surprise that most of them were neither aware of the food, nor the places where we had those. This prompted me to put up a blog on this - the unspoken part of a Goan trip - the delicacies one would find in Goa.

Continental breakfast at Caravela Cafe And Bistro, Panjim

The first thing I looked for once I reached Goa (Panjim) was a place to eat. I was not interested in the regular much used-to breakfast items, so started searching for something unique. It was more of a coincidence that I found this wonderful small bistro just near the place where I alighted.

Caravela Cafe and Bistro is a modest bistro in the streets of Panjim, not very far from the Panjim market. It was run by a sweet lady who made us feel that we are somewhere outside India. Even more was the effect of the food, it was just delicious!! Better than any continental food that I have had in India.

We ordered a chicken club sandwitch and a plate of toast and scrambled eggs.

Chicken club sandwitch

My first impression on getting the sandwitch served was if we would be able to finish it by ourselves. There were four sets of multi-layered thick sandwitch slices that were served. Each parts had three slices of bread and sandwitched between them, a chicken steak, lettuce, cheese and veggies.

Also, it was served with a good number of french fried potato sticks and a few sauces for sides. The worries of not being able to finish eased with time, as both of us found the taste hard to resist, even at the cost of a little heavy feeling.

Toast and scrambled eggs

What really amazed me was in fact the scrambled eggs. The egg whites were so fluffy and soft that it did not resemble anything familiar even in its looks. It felt like the eggs melted inside the mouth to give an extravagant flavour, and it blended perfectly well with the lightly toasted slices of bread.

These were so delicious that I craved to have many more plates, but had to control myself from eating a lot and doze off before the trip has even begun. I was so mesmerized with it that I came all the way back in search of the this bistro on my last day at Goa, only to find the bistro closed due to Diwali.

Seafood delight at 15 Candolim

By the time we reached our accommodation in Candolim after paying visit to a couple of attractions, we were starving. But we were again not in a mood for compromising on the newness in the food that we could try. And that brought us to this shack near Candolim beach - 15, Candolim, an amazing place indeed.

Crab soup

I still get the taste of their crab soup when I think of it. It was a creamy soup with crab pieces, and in fact a large portion of the shell in it. The aroma and the looks were neverthless not deceiving. I should say it was perhaps the best seafood soup I ever had in my life.

Although slightly sweet due to the creamy nature of the soup base, it was perfectly complemented by the spicy taste of fresh pepper. And the crab shell too had a role to play- it provided a smell of fresh cooked crab, that definitely made us revere the soup.

Seafood sizzlers

The seafood sizzler was again out of the world. I am a regular to sizzlers that stuff rice or nodles with little pieces of chicken, meat or veggies. But this one had a lot, really a lot, of seafood - be it the squid, the pieces of shark, the prawns, the octopus, and abviously the veggies and rice.

This is one dish in the list that I cannot find myself to explain it to satisfaction. The sizzlers made me wonder how important is something well made, rather than just the ingredients. The makers did manage to get rid of the tender smell and raw tastes generally a feature of seafoods.

Satisfying and authentic lunch at Fish Tail

The next day's search for food started when we were leaving from the Chapora fort by the time for lunch. We found an appealing place nearby Vagator beach in Zomato and straight away headed for it. It was only much later that I discovered that the restaurant that we were looking for was right on the beach.

A beatiful shack facing the sea, on a relatively calm beach was the Fish Tail. It served amazing dishes, from mosltly all the popular cuisines in the world. What caught my attention here was the Goan fish curry with rice and the chicken stroganoff.

Chicken stroganoff

The stroganoff featured a thick creamy gravy and abundant chicken pieces evenly spread over the gravy. Also well blended and hidden were many veggies, raw and cooked. And then there was this beautifully decorated plain rice.

This was specifically new to me. Till then I didn't get to taste it from anywhere, neither had I seen it somewhere. So no comparisons here. It was just absolutely awesome. Just a little too much in quantity for a person, perhaps. But the taste again rules over the apetite.

The Goan fish curry with rice

The goan fish curry and the rice took me back to Kerala - my home state. What I expected was just some rice with a fish curry, and perhaps a piece of fried fish as well. But what came in had a few amazing vegetable side dishes and salad apart from the mackerel fish curry and a giant piece of fry.

I need not explain further on this. Goa is too famous for its fish, perhaps over the whole world. The one we had was no different in its taste than expected. It was just brilliant in a word.

And finally, the Bebinca

The third day was a little boring in terms of the food we had. All that we got to try was a plate of American chopsuey from a some star restaurant somewhere near Panjim. It was nothing out of ordinary. But by the time we figured out another thing to try in Goa - the legendary Bebinca.

I found this when I suddenly realized that I haven't tried any deserts in Goa. I asked the restaurant for Bebinca - something that came first when I Googled for authentic Goan sweets. But to my dismay, the restaurant didn't have stock of it. The remaining part of the day was particularly in search of Bebinca. And finally, I found it on the streets on Panjim at a very old and small place - Mr. Baker, that dates back to 1922.

The sweet shop and bakers was run by an elderly couple, sweet and modest. The lady explained me about Bebinca in detail. Bebinca is an Indo-Portuguese sweet that can be vaguely described as a pudding sandwitch. Layered and sandwitched are tastes of coconut, ghee, egg and many other things, and is just adequately sweet that doesn't spoil the smoothness. Bebinca was definitely one of the best sweets that I could try in my lifetime.

I only regret that I couldn't carry any more of this with me on my way back, partly because of the limited stocks and partly for the fear of it getting decayed over the journey. But I still cherish the taste very much to this day.

Even now, when I cherish the memories of my first and only Goa trip till now, the one I admire the most was the authentic and special food that I found there. Perhaps for the first time, a sport that I visited has in my memory the food that we ate more than the experiences and photographs.

Hope you find this blog post useful in your next trip to Goa.

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