Taste of the exotic

Goa is a place that fascinates foodies. It’s part of India but with a distinctive influence from its Portuguese rule and Muslim and Hindu heritages, so its cuisine is exotic and yet familiar. Now there is a chance to take part in an international celebration of Goan food at a pop up restaurant in Edinburgh. An authentic Goan vindaloo is on the menu when Kei de Freitas takes command of the stove at lunchtime on Saturday 10 January. Goan vindalo is cooked with Goan coconut vinegar and pork and Kei, who is a vegetarian specialist, is also offering an alternative version cooked with soya and aubergine.

When the Portuguese first went to Goa in the wake of Vasco da Gama in 1498, they both found local alternatives to substitute for the original ingredients of their favourite food as well as introducing exotic ingredients to the native cooking and so a distinctive Eurasian cuisine developed. Kei is a Eurasian Portuguese chef with roots in Porto where his Portuguese father and Eurasian mother sowed his passion for food. His subsequent travels have reinforced his interest in multicultural cuisine and he is now something of a guru on Goan and Malaccan food. Kei’s passion for food was clearly evident at a recent pop-up event where he shared the secrets of batatas a murro (traditional Portuguese punched potatoes, pictured) and then served a delicious Malaccan curry caril debal. Like all good pop-up events, full details of the Taste of Goa event are revealed at time of booking.

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