Vijay Sadhu Previews Recipes for New Restaurant Sutra. Bonus Video of Sadhu Cooking!

Vijay Sadhu’s new restaurant Sutra opens next month in The Shops at Legacy in Plano. He needed a few folks to use as guinea pigs to test  some of his recipes. We were happy to oblige. Sadhu whipped out five dishes, assisted by longtime friend and Sutra consultant Arturo Romanillos (his specialty is pâtisserie and baking which he has done at Stephan Pyles and a few times at the James Beard House in New York. Currently he is Program Chair of Pâtisserie and Baking at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Dallas.  Here are some of the dishes we tried and you may be able to taste when Sutra opens.

Mung dal Falafel with Tabouli and Tahini Sauce. The falafels are made with garlic, ginger, and ground spice. It is accompanied by a tabouli salad made from mung dal sprouts, garlic, parsley, bulgur wheat, and lemon juice. The tahini sauce is essentially a sesame seed sauce with garlic.

Oh, there is lots more. (VIDEO!!)

Tuna Tarbooz with Mango Watermelon Chaat. Tarbooz is the Hindi word for watermelon. Sadhu marinates the tuna in lime juice and salt, a preparation like ceviche, spiced with garam masala and green cardamom powder. He tops it with toasted black sesame seeds. He uses chaat masala seasoning on the mango watermelon chaat. The tamarind sauce streaked on the plate is laced with cumin and jaggery. Audience response to this dish was that the tamarind sauce should be given more of a star role. Dipping the tuna chunks in the tamarind was a rich, succulent combination. Undoubtedly the tropical fruit flavors in this dish balance the tuna.

Goa Empadinhas with Star Anise Foie Gras, Sorpotel Sauce and Bombay Chile Chips. Just to prove every county has its take on empanadas, the Portuguese bequeathed empadinhas when they ruled Goa. Sadhu’s version is puff pastry stuffed with sautéed onions, ginger, and garlic cooked with fresh chorizo. Feni (fermented juice of cashew fruit) is added at the end. Sorpotel Sauce is also from Goa and another Portuguese influence on the cuisine. It is made of cloves, peppercorns, cumin, white wine vinegar, cinnamon, cardamom, cumin, turmeric and cloves sautéed together. These spices go best with pork, hence the Spanish chorizo. The dish is topped with cardamom foam with tamarind jam.

Cashew Nut Crusted Soft Shell Crab with Mango Coconut Sauce. Kerala is the state in the very tropical, southern part of India. There are heavy Jewish and Dutch influences on the cuisine from this area. It is also seafood-intensive. Here. Sadhu makes a sauce of mango and coconut and roasts cashew with Bengal Gram, kari leaves, cinnamon, hing, cumin, red chilies. Then he grinds it into a fine powder, coats the crab, fries it and surrounds it with a mango, coconut milk seasoned with mustard seeds, kari leaves, and hing.

Nitro Kulfi topped with Basil Seeds (they look like caviar on top of the Kulfi) and Candied Pistachios accompanied by Cardamom Brûlée Bananas. The nitro in the name refers to liquid nitrogen which was used to chill a bowl of Kaurina’s Kulfi. This Kulfi is as rich and creamy as it looks. It is available (already frozen) at Central Market, Whole Foods, and local Indian markets. The liquid nitrogen made short work of the freezing. It took about 90 seconds.

Easy Does It. Handling the Liquid Nitrogen. Photo: Shane Stephens

Below is a video of the process. Excuse the happy people in the background!

9 comments on “Vijay Sadhu Previews Recipes for New Restaurant Sutra. Bonus Video of Sadhu Cooking!

  1. All this looks simply YUMMMMM!!! Being born and raised in Goa as a youth, it brings back delicious memories of my Grandma’s cooking…

    I wonder where Chef Vijay got his “Feni” from? :-)

  2. It’s really too bad that we are not able to smell or taste your food from the computer (they all look devine). We’ll just have to try a little bit of everything from your menu when your restaurant opens next month. We’re all looking forward to it, especially our three boys.

  3. I was very privileged to attend this dinner and I have to say, Vijay and his two assistants blew us all out of the water with his AMAZING food!
    What’s even more amazing is that Vijay and his “sou-chefs” cooked all these dishes to perfection for 14 people in a kitchen no larger than a closet!
    I predict Sutra will be the hottest ticket in town after he opens. Vijay is an amazing, talented chef who will now be free to create all the unique and original dishes that have been “stored” away in his mind because he had never been truly free to cook how he always wanted.

  4. Oh, one more thing. As you’ll notice in the video, Vijay had to contend with cooking on the apartment’s electric stove. He said, “that’s not easy when you’re accustomed to commercial gas stoves”. But, he did it!

  5. We had the unique pleasure of watching Chef Vijay in action in the kitchen (with a gas cook top :-) cooking fish, scallops, and various veggies including Asparagus wrapped with Bacon. There were 13 kids (two babies) and 8 adults. What was most amazing to see was that the kids eat ALL the Asparagus and most of the fish. That is the sign of a GREAT Chef – when the kids eat the food made for the adults, ESPECIALLY Asparagus…!! We all learned a thing or two being in the same kitchen watching Chef Vijay cook…

    Chef Vijay – with kids loving your creations, the adults with families (kids) will keep coming back… :-)