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Malavika’s Mumbaistan: Delectable dishes of all kinds

mumbai Updated: Jun 08, 2018 18:30 IST
Malavika Sangghvi
Malavika Sangghvi
Hindustan Times
Malavika’s Mumbaistan,Mumbai,Malavika Sangghvi

Baba Siddiqui’s (centre) family. (Inset) The iftar party at which SRK and Salman Khan made up.

So it’s that time of the year again, when all roads lead to Congress leader and former MLA from Bandra Baba Siddiqui’s annual and much-awaited Iftar party. Hosted as usual at a Bandra five-star, the gathering has assumed mythical proportions ever since Siddiqui played mediator and got the two supposedly rival superstars, SRK and Salman Khan to kiss (well hug really) and make up to the delight of onlookers, photographers and all of Bollywood a few years ago. And, whereas, it doesn’t appear that his legendary peace-keeping abilities will be called for this time around— the two Bandstand superstars were seen to be getting along quite well at Sonam Kapoor and Anand Ahuja’s sangeet this year —it’s not important as besides the promise of stratospheric star-spotting, there is also the additional attraction of dishes like Baingan Mirch ki Salan, Murg Tikka, Hyderabadi Haleem, Shahi Tukda and Pistachio Phirni to delight his guests. “The chefs are being flown in from Hyderabad, Lucknow and Delhi for the dinner,” says an insider, adding “and every last detail is being attended to so guests enjoy a memorable meal.” So, will the food at hand attract more attention than the wall-to-wall array of stars expected? Watch this space.

TRUE LIES

We have often been told that it is not the price of a gift but the thought behind it that counts; and perhaps, nothing demonstrates this axiom as well as the following instance: apparently, so in love is this newly-engaged couple, both billionaire scions of two of the country’s major business clans, that they are conducting a courtship that is as sweet (literally) as it is endearing. Apparently, ever since his fiancé learnt that her soon-to-be-husband was particularly fond of sipping fresh and sweet coconut water, sources say she has ensured that one perfect coconut reaches his home every morning for his enjoyment. Of course, given their respective positions and wealth, this is not as simple as it sounds. The coconut is said to be procured from Thailand, where the sweetest variety is found. And though these are said to be available (for a price) at a few local Mumbai markets, given who the sender is and the emotion behind the gift, we would not be surprised if in fact, a fresh sample is flown in all the way from Bangkok on a private jet each day! Sweet are the ways of young love indeed.

SEPARATED AT BIRTH?

Rahul Kanwal, the Delhi-based leading news anchor and managing editor at India Today Television who had served as an anchor on Aaj Tak

London-based president and CFO of steel firm ArcelorMittal, Aditya Mittal (right), whose father Lakshmi Mittal is ranked amongst the richest men in the UK

THE GREAT ART MART

(LtoR) Akbar Padamsee and MF Husain.

Collectors of art are currently said to be spoilt for choice, as the next couple of weeks will witness not one or two, but three major art auctions in the city. The well-established Pundole will be offering a small, tightly chosen group of works from various owners, led once again by their Modernists. Dinesh and Minal Vazirani’s Saffronart’s upcoming Summer Online Auction will mark an important milestone as the 200th one from the leading auction house. And, Tushar and Vickram Sethi’s Asta Guru will be presenting its collection of South East Asian Contemporary Art. According to art consultant Mallika Advani, probably the most impressive work in the Pundole sale is the monumental Akbar Padamsee-painted “Seated Nude” from 1956. “Originally in the artist’s family collection, the work was also exhibited in the Venice Biennale of 1956,” she informs. Equally appealing, though not as large in scale, she says is MF Husain’s iconic Horses, dating back to the 1960s.

Amongst Saffron Art’s leading works, meanwhile, is Tyeb Mehta’s rare and iconic Kali (1989). “The painting was once part of the art collection of the eminent and influential theatre director Ebrahim Alkazi,” says a spokesperson. As for Astaguru, works by Thukral and Tangra, Anju Dodiya, and Kochi Biennial founder Riyas Komu, make up its varied and colourful offering. So this season appears to be a very exciting one for collectors. And, also for those who just like to look and appreciate art but cannot afford to buy, there is enough food for thought: as is the practice these days, the auctions are preceded with a heady offering of soirees, cocktails and dinners for which the houses cast wide nets amongst Mumbai’s artsy chattering classes, in the hope of making a sale.

Art for art’s sake? And for auction’s sake too.

First Published: Jun 08, 2018 16:33 IST