Master Chef Karrupiah of The Bangala Hotel and cooking school in Karaikudi at work on a mutton recipe.


Karrupiah is the master chef at The Bangala in the town of Karaikudi in Tamil Nadu’s Chettinad region. From the time I first met him in 2014, until my return with Pauli-Ann two years later, I dreamed of cooking with him. Karrupiah is the expression of what is good in all cooks. He lives to cook …

Karen enters the inner courtyard of a Chettiar mansion.

Karaikudi in Chettinad

Chettinad in Tamil Nadu has become a popular destination for food lovers, architectural buffs and antique hunters. The area is the ancestral homeland of the Chettiyars, a class of wealthy merchants who built their fortunes from trade and finance ventures in south east Asia. Because of their travels, their food is distinctly different from other …

Kochi, Cochin, cow artwork, hotel beds, Culinary Tours, Faces Places and Plates Blog

Kochi – Places to Stay

  There are new hotels being built in Kochi all the time but we like the following list for their locations, services and amenities.   CGH Brunton Boatyard  Located a short walk from Jew Town and the fish markets, the CGH (Clean, Green and Healthy) hotel group took an old ship building yard and turned …

avial, vegetable stew, vegetarian cooking, Nimmy Paul, vegetables, matchstick, Nimmy&Paul, Cochin, Kochi, South India, India, Indian Cooking Schools, Indian Cooking, Faces Places and Plates Blog

Nimmy Paul’s Avial

  Nimmy Paul says you can vary the vegetables you use in this dish but it should always contain a starch like yam or potato, a soft vegetable like a raw green banana or plantain and a green vegetable.   Enjoy this bright and colourful dish as a side or on its own with appams …

Nimmy Paul, Nimmy&Paul, chemeen, shrimp, prawn, stirfry, Cochin, Kochi, Cooking Schools, Indian Cooking, Faces Places and Plates Blog

Nimmy Paul’s Chemeen

Nimmy Paul used small pink prawns for this dish and they were as tender as can be. Kokum – one of the key ingredients – is a small round type of tamarind pod native to South India. Look for it (as a dried version) at Indian Grocers or substitute a small amount of tamarind paste.