Thursday, December 06, 2012

Legend of CTR Benne Masale Dose

Malleshwaram is a busy suburb in Bangalore, mostly inhabited by local Brahmins and Mangaloreans. Udupi restaurants have a strong base here and my memory goes back to the Eighties when I stayed at 1st Cross malleshwaram for 2 years. I was a regular at New Krishna Bhavan for their excellent soft Idlis with piping hot sambar which is located opposite Mantri Mall behind the park. Another place is Janatha Hotel on Malleshwaram 8th Cross which is famous for crispy Medhu Vadas with sweet and hot sambar and their special Benne Masale Dose. 
CTR's Shri Sagar

This is it!
Central Tiffin Room(CTR) was very much there on the 7th cross corner connecting Margosa Road but I never had any idea about the Benne Masale Dose they served. It was very recently when we had a group discussion on Facebook, a friend staying in Bangalore asked me if I have tried CTR Benne Masale Dose. I expressed my ignorance and she was surprised. She said, it is like a temple for Bangaloreans staying in Malleshwaram! So, I decided and visited CTR earlier this year to taste their dosas.
Crispy Benne Masale Dose
CTR or Sri Sagar is a very ordinary looking restaurant with limited seating capacity, most of the time crowded. There is service upstairs as well. Masala dosas here have been famous for over sixty years as per information gathered from sources. Apart from dosas, they have crisp Maddur Vadas and Rava Idlis. 
Look at the Cross section of the dosa!
Their Benne Masale is crisp and browned on the outside, soft and fluffy on the inside, with a dollop of ‘fresh butter indented from Nagamangala. Dosa is served with white and green chutneys. It takes nearly 10 minutes for the waiters to get them crisp hot Benne Masale Dosas.
Video courtesy: kushy1960

One would go for a Maddur Vada to pass time. Maddur vadas are crisp and tasty with the aroma of browned chopped onions and sesame seeds sticking to the disc like flat vadas.
Maddur Vada
As you break the crisp and thick dosa, the smell of melting fresh ghee blended with the potato stuffing gives a unique feeling of contentment. The whole process of ordering, waiting for and then attacking the hot dosa is a great experience. It is no wonder if one is tempted to order a second one but I would say.....just go for it. Don't hesitate.
Filter Coffee
There aren't many CTRs anyway and one can not frequent Malleshwaram unless one is a resident of Bangalore. Don't forget to sip their strong and invigorating coffee served in stainless steel tumblers.

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