I was invited to be a part of a special meal where bloggers would get to preview (or PERi-view in this case) the new Butterfly Chicken Breast meal at Nando’s. After being greeted by the delightful Shambhavi Mishra, our host for the evening, we started off on what was going to be a super few hours of Portuguese food from the kitchen of Nando’s. All the food is driven by their special PERi-PERi sauces that give it a distinct taste.
The appetizers for the evening kicked off with Hummus, Spicy Mixed Olives, Roasted Veg dip and Pita bread. The Roasted veg dip gave me one of those ‘you had me at hello’ Jerry Maguire moments where I instantly fell in love. We were also served Chicken Liver with Portuguese rolls. Not being a liver fan, and seeing what was up next, I stayed away from this dish. But the folks who did eat it really enjoyed it. The final appetizer just made me fall in love with the place.
|Hummus, Spicy mixed Olves, Roasted Veg Dip and Pita Bread|
We were served Chicken Wings in a variety of PERi-PERi heats. The wings were done to perfection and the spice just lit up some fireworks in my mouth. Despite the fact that there was a main-course, I just lost it and sampled all the varieties and added extra hot sauces. Do NOT miss out on the wings when you go to Nando’s. Do be a bit cautious on the hot sauces though.
|PERi-PERi Hot Sauce|
We were also offered salads that included Fresh Tomato, Nando’s PERi-olives, mixed peppers, cucumber, onions on a bed of crisp lettuce. It all sounded too healthy to me and I stayed away. Well, those chicken wings were not going to finish themselves were they? Somebody had to eat them.
For the main course, we started off with the Espetada Rustica. Don’t get intimidated by the name. The dish consists of tender marinated chicken thighs stuffed with sundried tomatoes, red onions, served on a skewer. Full marks for the presentation of the dish; and full marks for taste. This comes along with sides such as corn and coleslaw that make great additions to the very tender meat. Definitely a ‘must-have’ on the list when I go next.
We were also served the Cataplana Algarve. This item is served in an authentic copper dish with PERi-PERi chicken thighs, grilled peppers and chick peas. The unique flavour of the dish comes from the special cataplana sauce served on a bed of spicy rice. Compared to the rest of the dishes, this was on the milder side when it came to taste. Again, I added more hot sauce. Clearly I was in love with the hot sauces alone. I dont recollect, but I think I poured some drops in the water as well.
Now for the grand crescendo of the meal – The Butterfly Chicken Breast meal. The chicken was trimmed off all the fat, marinated for twenty four hours, frame grilled and served in a PERi-PERi sauce of your choice. Nandos has their own standards and quality checks for the meats that come into the restaurant. These are done on a regular basis right through-out the supply chain. The high quality was evident from the double breasted chicken in this meal that not only tasted fantastic, but was a joy to easily cut through and eat. While the sauce is already mildly spicy, you may want to ask for something a little more ambitious if you’re up for it. This meal comes with a side of crispy potato wedges and a refreshing drink. This is meal is something I want to go back and try in isolation, without any interference from appetizers. Especially those awesome chicken wings.
|Butterfly Chicken Breast Meal|
|Butterfly Chicken Breast Meal|
We closed the meal with a slice of chocolate cake with layers of home-made butter cream. I do believe my stomach was vigorously waving a white flag and refused to take in any more food. It was a fantastic evening of great food with great company. I’m definitely putting Nando’s on the list of places I would recommend to people for great chicken wings.