I'm a huge fan of the classic Sunday roast, especially during the winter months, and I do love a curry, so the prospect of combining the two sounded like heaven.
I watch every cooking show possible on TV, so I am familiar with Great British Menu and Saturday Kitchen star Atul Kochhar.
The Indian born, British based chef, restaurateur and television personality is one of the most critically acclaimed chefs in Britain for his take on modern Indian cuisine, and was the second Indian chef to receive a Michelin star , awarded to Benares restaurant in London in 2007.
Hawkyns in Amersham is the latest restaurant by the the twice Michelin starred chef and I couldn't wait to find out what it was all about.
Situated in the picturesque town of Old Amersham at The Crown Inn, guests dine amidst the ambiance created by incredible aromas and a menu that harmoniously intertwines British and Indian flavours.
Beginning with a bottle of crisp, chilled Chablis and complementary soft homemade focaccia, we perused the menu which was made up of half a dozen each of starters, mains and desserts.
There were some ingredients neither I or my sister were familiar with, but nevertheless they sounded intriguing and appetizing.
To start I went for heritage beetroot, avocado, pomegranate and sweet potato chaat.
I didn't really know how it would be presented but I was not disappointed when it arrived on our rustic yet chic table.
The pink and purple concoction was beautiful to look at and to eat and it was a real comfort dish which surprised me.
The soft and creamy textures of potato and avocado were lightly spiced with the perfect amount of heat to excite my tastebuds.
At first my sister didn't know how to tackle her soft shell crab, but when she did tuck in, she too was impressed by the subtle yet distinctive ingredients that ignited her stomach.
The accompanying papaya salad and pear chutney, provided a fresh lift to the deep fried shellfish.
The pace was relaxed, the atmosphere casual and the service impeccable and we enjoyed taking in the stylish yet humble surroundings.
Among the mains were free range turkey with apricot and chorizo sprouts and braised pork cheeks and belly with coconut savoy cabbage - both of which sounded divine.
But I decided on the sea bass, served with semolina squid, Bombay potatoes, kachumber and coconut turmeric sauce.
The thick white fish fillet was cooked perfectly and its delicate flakes were enhanced by the crispy semolina squid.
The cosy (and moreish) fragrant potato cubes were also complimented by the fresh tomato salad.
But it was the sauce that really pulled the dish together.
The innovative use of coconut with turmeric created an exotic yet earthy punch which gloriously lingered on my palate.
My sister's charred lamb shoulder, which perhaps embodied some of the more traditional Sunday lunch components such as gravy (well aromatic broth) and autumn vegetables, was another stunning plate of food.
The rich, juicy hunk of meat stood proudly among crunchy turnips and cauliflower and the pearl barley offered a middle eastern vibe.
Pudding was indulgent but in no means sickly.
The cardamom chocolate fondant for example, had a light cocoa sponge and silky smooth centre, but the passion fruit gel (which just tasted like Solero ice cream) and rose parfait offered clean, elegant notes to cut through the decadent carbs.
It was a clever piece of cookery, plus the chocolate soil was a great addition.
Whether you choose to have lunch or dinner at Hawkyns, expect to find an a la carte menu singing with ingenious dishes, because let's face it, chef Atul Kochhar is a very, very clever man.
How to book a table at Hawkyns in Amersham:
Price: A la carte menu - starters from £7, mains from £16, desserts from £7
Address: Hawkyns, High Street, Amersham, HP7 0DH
Telephone: 01494 721541
Opening times: Mon-Thurs: 12pm-2:30pm and 6:30pm-9.30pm
Fri-Sat: 12pm-3pm and 6:30pm-10pm
Sun lunch: 12pm-4pm, Sun dinner: 6pm-9pm (bar food only)
Dress code: Smart casual
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