It’s minimalistic. And drives home a message. It also speaks in its wholesome, pure and wellness-begetting ingredients. Something the Indian diaspora may well embrace. The team behind Cure.fit which was founded in 2016 by Mukesh Bansal and Ankit Nagori are behind this new swanky café. They had brought healthy eating to your fingertips and have recently opened their first swanky retail outlet Eat.fit (a QSR outlet) on Church Street for the on-the-run busy bee who aspires to eat healthy, but succumbs to temptations, for want of better options.
Now that the Diwali indulgence has abated, and before Christmas and New Year merrymaking starts, Eat.fit is that friendly neighbourhood café that doles out portions of calorie-specific, nutrient-controlled food and home-styled meals to get you on the road to fitness... Better than reaching out to order junk food, right? As your body toys between announcing an indefinite strike or just succumbing, the team behind Cure.fit brings Eat.fit, this new-age café that brings good health in a plate.
Ankit Nagori, co-founder, Cure.fit , and culinary director Chef Jason Desouza realised that most people reach out for unhealthy as healthy is not within touching distance. That was where Cure.fit, the online delivery app brought health to innumerable people. Now, with the corner health café, it’s the street weary folk that are already ambling in for portions of goodness.
We walked into this simplistic self-serve health café, hungry as horses, and glanced through a very succinct menu - home-cooked meals that we instantly liked. Sub options made with wholegrain or multi-grain bread, no refined flour (yay) and the ‘can’t go wrong’ ghar ka khana! Smoothies, cold pressed juices, energy bars, and snacks. We settled for a parantha and dal meal and the Murg Khurchan, and chicken biryani. All with nutrient clearly brandished, calorie intake too.
The parantha was made without ghee – soft, layered and deliciously moist, and a dal makhani, which Chef Jason informed us was made without using butter or cream. Full marks - it was scrumptious (we wanted more), smokey notes on our tastebuds, with a creaminess thanks to slow cooking. The serving of dal could be increased.
The chicken in a tomato gravy was average… a bit sweetish, which we were informed was not due to any (sweet) additions, just tomato that the Eat.fit team purees in-house (as they do the masalas too), preservative free, and there was a delectable chilli achar in mustard. Yum.
The roti was ok, was dry. It came with a crunchy fresh salad, all made before, a bit of a downer. We loved the green and snicker smoothie. The biryani, we were happy to see it on a health spurting menu, though the white rice surprised us, given how it’s the one thing all nutritionists agree is worthless. It was tasty, a subtle masala and a tangy salan with raita… and the chicken was very tender. Good.
We also ordered a chia cake and a wholewheat chocolate brownie. Both were delicious. Soft and moist, that welcome taste of sweet, but with organic jaggery, honey or date additions, it’s probably going to be on our list of desserts.
“We offer not just salads and smoothies, but daily home fare, for the always on-the-move health seeker. Since the Indian palate loves their home-style meals, we offer meals like rajma chawal, dal roti, etc,” Ankit Nagori explained.
With the healthy eating sector all set to explode, this quick walk in, simple food café is perfect, and right on the money. And given Cure.fit’s already burgeoning online deliveries, this brings their expertise to the street smartie who is probably eyeing that chaat or fried chicken!
“The health meal market is about 1 crore in the top 10 cities, working people who want to eat healthy. On the Cure.fit app, we offer many cuisines – Thai, Sri Lankan, Carribean, etc. But we have noticed that Indians prefer Indian cuisine so we offer the popular meals, all locally sourced and produced. Also, (we realised) snacks as a category has not been explored, and is weak in India. We would like to promote that, with a lighter lunch at 12 or 1, a 4 pm snack and a light dinner,” Ankit explains.
With over 15 years of culinary experience, Chef Jason Desouza brings international expertise. A chef who walks the talk – he eats healthy! A Le Cordon Bleu trained chef, he worked as sous chef with Gordon Ramsay and was Chef De Cuisine with Alain Ducasse at the 3 Michelin star restaurant at Dorchester in London, and has had stints with the Taj too.
“We live the philosophy ourselves. As a chef I used to think - imagine if you can’t use all the flavours. But you can. The meals have nutrients counted, are home-styled, they are carbohydrate and protein controlled, etc We have options of add-ons too, even our serving ladles are programmed for exact portion sizes,” says Jason Desouza, culinary director.
The team stays away from the blacklist of ingredients; sugar, refined flour, transfat, preservatives, etc. We thought the paneer and chicken curry were surprisingly sweetish, but Jason explains, “The only sweetness we add is honey and jaggery, (though the chicken does not have any such additions).”
The menu is a tad too limited for the Indian variety seeker. We would have loved to see more salads, dosa (oats, green gram, suji) options, as Indian grains are perfect for a healthy balanced meal.
They do give you a small bite-size sweet at the end which was a nice touch. The café helps chaff the best on offer (coz’ it’s too laborious to do the searching yourself). Almond flour and milk, soya milk and lactose-free milk would also be a great addition, and the enterprising young chef is experimenting with almond and raw banana flour. Very workable for the health-eating fiend!
The idea is worth its weight in gold, and in an increasingly growing consumerist environment, where the fine print of ingredients makes the “blacklisted” inveigle its way into a diet - here is a meal that’s carefully controlled, researched and cooked. Tastes like regular khana, and you don’t have to worry about calories! Coz’ even if you ask for an extra helping, they will refuse! Though you can always order something else. The price is very economical, and the service is quick and the outside seating is perfect in this weather. It’s the opportune time to take a morsel or two from this newly-opened healthy food outlet in town because as Jason says, at least 70 to 80 percent of the time, we all have healthy wholesome food. True that. From Cure.fit, the healthy food delivery online, that also has Mind.fit (meditation) and Care.fit (family medical care), the team has four more outlets in the pipeline – Koramangala, Indiranagar, HSR and Phoenix soon.
We’ve OD’ed on everything this festive season, now it’s timefor some responsible eating, and this is the great place to start… and continue!...