But nothing you do is likely to measure up to the Christmas Special menu dinner at Koshy’s.Dec 22, 2022, 11 04 | Updated: Dec 23, 2022, 12 42
“People who don’t like turkey haven’t actually tasted turkey,” Prem Koshy—famed raconteur and restaurateur—told Explocity.
Turkey does have its detractors. Vox once described it as the meat that “excels in its mediocrity”, with the sole merit of serving as a “blank slate” for other flavours. But the turkey described by Koshy is distinct from the 20lb (9kg) freebie you can collect at an American supermarket at holiday time if you rack up enough points.
It takes a lot of brining—or even an injection of tandoori marinade, if you are so inclined—and an array of tasty sides to make the American colossus palatable.
But nothing you do is likely to measure up to the Christmas Special menu dinner at Koshy’s. The Christmas feast at Koshy’s (Note: the restaurant is closed on Christmas day) starts with the tender rearing of the delicate free-range turkeys.
These smaller, wilder birds will make turkey-haters eat their words with a second helping of gravy. Speaking of gravy, in England or America, where turkeys are often oven-roasted, a chef who values authenticity might make a stovetop version from turkey giblets or spare parts, but there are folks who will simply buy the sauce prepackaged. Even potatoes and stuffing can be bought in packets.
But at Koshy’s, the turkey is pot-roasted, along with potatoes that absorb all that rich flavor, and the gravy is actually as defined by Merriam-Webster—the juices of the meat.
The pièce de-resistance is, however, what follows—the Christmas pudding.
This is a dessert so delicious that people reserve theirs well in advance. They check in anxiously with Koshy to see if the fruit is already being prepped in October and November. The answer will be yes. It takes a long time to prepare the fruit for the puddings, and at Koshy’s, they never compromise on the process.
And like everything else about Koshy’s, the pudding has its legends.
Such as the one about a certain customer who entered a Koshy’s pudding in a contest in an English town. And the pudding won, beating the Brits at their own game.
This is only mildly surprising, as the Christmas menu at Koshy’s was originally designed to please the palates of expatriate Brits nostalgic for a taste of home.
Since that time—nearly 80 years ago—the recipes have changed a tad. The puddings are now 100% vegetarian and alcohol-free, though they can be served with a brandy sauce on the side.
All this is under the keen oversight of PV Abraham, who started as a bakery apprentice and has since worked at the restaurant for over half a century. Because of him, the flavour and the quality of the food remain unchanged.
As does the most important spirit—that of the holidays.
Check out this video of Prem Koshy making Christmas BBQ chicken. https://youtu.be/KJLgtq6VtGs