Malayalees do have a penchant for seafood. Every family and region has their own recipes for meen pattichathu, pollichathu, thenga arachathu, meen masala, fish mappas and fish mollee. So then, if you are on Container Road, wait patiently if required, for a table at Vella Kanthari. It serves great food at affordable rates in neat surroundings.
The proprietors John and his wife Nitsy choose to serve palate-tickling fish dishes a Malayalee has grown up eating with basic recipes. The meen thilapichathu as they call it, or meen pattichathu as I have grown up saying, is a tangy fish curry cooked traditionally with red chilly powder and dried Malabar tamarind. The meen peera is made with smaller fishes in a mix of coarsely-ground fresh coconut, turmeric, shallots, ginger, green chilies and curry leaves. These staple homely food is essentially what they serve.
Housed in their own property as an extension of their home at Mulavukad between the police station and the toll plaza, they have been in this business for six years. John manages the inflow of food, Nitsy takes the orders, and her mother is in charge of the billing counter.