Diwali, also known as deepavali, is one of India’s ancient, most important celebrations. Meaning “festival of lights,” diwali is celebrated every autumn and spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness.
Marco Polo Plaza Cebu took part in the celebration by offering Indian cuisine in a Diwali-themed Culinary Journey at its signature restaurant, Cafe Marco. The hotel was guided for the celebration by Diwali consultant Aditi Ahuja, an Indian artist and events consultant who lives in the Philippines.
India’s rich culture is reflective in its cuisine, which varies from region to region. This results in a multitude of flavors and preparation styles which are reflective of a certain area’s culture and traditions.
Similarly, a variety of Indian dishes were served alongside Cafe Marco’s other buffet offerings, inviting guests to sample Indian cuisine as they went from salads to main courses to dessert. The chickpea yellow dal tadka was a cold dish served with salads, mixed with beans and corn and flavored with onions and garlic.
Dal makhani, or softened lentils and spices in rich, heavy sauce, is a popular dish served in most Indian restaurants that can be eaten alone, with naan, or with rice. Matar paneer is another dish in rich sauce, made of firm-cooked cottage cheese. The aloo simla mirch had well-spiced potatoes and peppers in sauce. Meat dishes like chicken kadai, chicken tikka masala and lamb kebabs were both tender and flavorful.
All of these authentic Indian dishes were so well executed, it leaves the diner wishing Diwali dishes at Cafe Marco would be available the entire year. Fortunately, the hotel’s new vegetarian a la carte menu features Indian-inspired food like green mango dal, pumpkin dal, and cauliflower and potato aloo gobi, so guests can continue to enjoy Indian flavors in all of the hotel’s food outlets.