It’s April folks! And I couldn’t be happier to have cooked alongside Executive Chef, Prakash Seetul, in the stunning Astor Grill at The St. Regis Doha. We whipped up some wonderful seasonal dishes for all you foodies to try…

As I quickly head over to Astor Grill – a beautiful rustic restaurant with an awesome open-kitchen, located at The St. Regis Doha – I greet Chef Seetul and from his humor, I can tell this will be an incredible cooking session. We make our way to the kitchen, excited to see what Chef Seetul and his enthusiastic team have in store for Cucina De Badir.

Little did I know, we would start off with my all-time favourite dish: Butternut Squash Soup with Cinnamon Foam and Pumpkin Seed. We started off by adding some butter, onion, and celery, all together in a frying pan. We later added a pinch of salt and pepper to all the ingredients. For vegetable-lovers, Chef Seetul recommends adding your choice of fresh veggies to the frying pan too. As the ingredients in the pan sizzle to a nice colour, we cut some squash slices in thick, even pieces. The chef adds: “Cut the squash evenly, so at the time of blending all of the pieces will be properly cooked.” Next, we add our frying pan contents and squash pieces to a soup pot, with water – the chef recommends letting everything boil for about 15 minutes. As we continue with our foodie journey, we start prepping our delicious sweet touch to the dish; cinnamon and milk infusion.

First up we put truffle butter, salt, and Parmesan cheese in a frying pan and mix well. At the same time, the delicious squash is blended and poured into a dish! The butternut squash soup is all ready; we add just a touch of milk foam and pumpkin seeds on top, and voila! The soup was absolutely yummy, and we’d highly recommend ordering it to start off your dinner at Astor Grill.

For a delicious and tantalising main course, Astor Grill delivers one of the most delectable choices of beef in town. So, it was only fitting that next I was going to try my hand at cooking the herb roasted beef tenderloin with seared foie gras, whipped potato and truffle sauce – how good does that sound? As Chef Seetul explains a trick, or two, about the beef ’s quality and cooking techniques, he starts adding salt and pepper all over the beef – making sure the tenderloin is completely covered. We add some high burning density oil to the pan and let the beef fry, evenly.

“From the appetiser to the main course and the lovely dessert – Astor Grill’s menu is palate-pleasing to say the least.”

The charismatic chef let’s me take full-control of the situation and I add butter, onion, and rosemary to the pan, letting everything fry together for 15 minutes. We place the beef into the oven and let it sit. Next, we prep for the delicious whipped potato. We cut some thick slices of potatoes and let them boil. Once they are ready we mash them all up! To the whipped potato we add butter and salt. The beef is then out of the oven and put aside to rest before plating up with the whipped potato side. The meat is tender, and every component on the plate complements each other so well – a mouthwatering main that we loved.

For a sweet end to a fabulous cooking experience, I’m treated to pecan pie. We immediately start thinning the dough, later placing it into the mold. As we clean the edges, Chef Seetul surprises me with a new technique that I’ve never seen before: blind baked pastry. It consists of adding a plastic wrap to cover the dough with some rice on top to create weight. The chef advises to make sure no plastic wrap is in contact with the mould. We place it in the oven at 165 degree Celsius. I melt some butter with maple syrup and blanched some sugar with two eggs and vanilla extract in a bowl. Then we carefully pour the melted butter and maple syrup over the eggs and sugar mix. Once our pastry is done, we add some pecan nuts and we gently pour our maple mix on top. We let it bake at 165 degrees Celsius for about 12 minutes. Every mouthful of this beautiful dessert is like a piece of food heaven.

From the appetiser to the main course and the lovely dessert – Astor Grill’s menu is palate-pleasing to say the least. The ambience is excellent, the food top-notch and the standard of quality ingredients is high. We also love the friendly staff and service – this place really nails it with an all-round great dining experience.We walked out with happy, full bellies… Hasta la próxima en la Cucina De Badir!