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Jacqueline Monahan

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By Jacqueline Monahan

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Bollywood Bash at Origin India Celebrates Partnership with New Executive Chef

Origin India, with its welcoming, warm orange interior, expansive wooden floor, and two semi-private rooms draped in silk, has an 11-year history of bringing multi-regional Indian cuisine to Las Vegas from its location on the aptly named Paradise Road.
 
On May 24, 2017, the restaurant celebrated its partnership with Paradise India’s Owner/Executive Chef William Bathini (who now assumes the Executive Chef role for both restaurants) with an evening of food, music, and dance.
 
Origin India’s owner/CEO, Raja Majid, was on hand along with Chef Bathini to personally welcome guests and oversee the evening’s events, which included an abundance of appetizers during a two-hour cocktail seating, live tabla drums played to taped traditional music and oftentimes accompanied by elegant, energetic belly dancers that interacted with guests for scores of smart phone videos and pictures; the ancient meeting the modern in a most enjoyable manner, indeed.

Origin India 4440L to R, Chef Murali, Chef Jainine Jaffer, Owner/CEO Raja Majid, Tyra Bell-Holland, Chef William Bathini
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Attendees sampled appetizers that included portions of delicately seasoned fish filet, spicy red Chicken 65 wings (so called because traditionally, the herbs and spices used to make it numbered 65), yogurt-marinated lamb chunks (Boti Kabab) that were cooked in a clay oven, meat balls (lamb or chicken) Reshmi Kabab (Ground chicken blended with spices) and vegetarian samosas (deep fried dumplings).

Select members of the media and special guests (former congresswoman Shelley Berkeley was in attendance) were then served a family style meal that left your humble correspondent wondering if she would need a shoehorn in order to exit the restaurant’s double doors.

Origin India 4439
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Heaping bowls and platters of various dishes were served and passed around long wooden tables, making it possible to create custom gastronomic combinations on plates which did not remain empty for long. Chicken Korma (tender chunks in curry sauce and coconut milk) in a bowl was accompanied by a colorful chopped salad on a platter; broccoli sautéed with coconut flakes beckoned from another bowl, while green peas and carrots, also sautéed with coconut flakes twinkled from another.

bollyplate

Photo credit: Mike Monahan

 

A large meat platter filled with seared lamb chops, and other meats was a showstopper, while large bowls of rice, both white and brown varieties were made even more mouthwatering topped with vegetables or the coconut-based sauce from the Chicken Korma, becoming an additional culinary treat in its own right.
 
Entrees and sides are available in vegan and vegetarian varieties and can be made gluten free, as in the dosa (pancake-like bread) which was served to our table, made from lentils. At Origin India and Paradise India, everyone eats.

For dessert, intriguing cylinders of aquamarine sorbet that tasted mildly of mint were actually the components of a proprietary Push-Up, which many will remember as a childhood frozen treat, where the cool rise of the creamy contents through the tube is controlled by pushing the attached handle upward.

There suddenly appeared a silver tower of tiny Chai spice latte cupcakes frosted with a cardamom rose butter cream and decorated with gold and silver beads, making them almost too pretty to eat.  Almost.

chaicupcakes

Photo credit: Mike Monahan

As plentiful as the offerings were during this particular celebration, they represented only a small percentage of the dishes the Origin India and Paradise India are capable of creating.  Their menu changes seasonally and they can also provide halal and kosher foods.  They cater, they deliver, but most of all, they cook.

That’s where Chef Bathini excels.  According to Majid, his (Bathini’s) focus on traditional Southern Indian cuisine, presented with a modern and refined flair, is “flavorful and much healthier."  Known for its fragrance, flavors, seasoning, taste, and visual appeal, Southern Indian food is an experience of the senses.

Bathini, a Pune native from West Central India, adds, “South Indians more widely use coconut in food preparation and have relied more on rice, vegetables, and seafood."

Bathini also creates North Indian, Indi-Chinese, and Mughlai fusion dishes (a rich cuisine, cooked with aromatic spices, nuts and dried fruits).  His restaurant, Paradise India on West Sahara, boasts the largest Indian buffet in Las Vegas and is approaching its first anniversary in July - As if you needed another reason to check out the artistry and aromatics of this splendidly spiced, complex cuisine.

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Foodwise, in Las Vegas, the path to Paradise just doubled.

Origin India has two locations:
Origin India (Paradise Road)
Paradise India (West Sahara)

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