Chef Ranveer Brar says daal infused with gold 'embraces spirit of India and Dubai'

Indian chef's latest dish at Festival City restaurant KashKan joins slew of other gold-encrusted bites and beverages in the UAE

Daal infused with edible gold at Indian chef Ranveer Brar's Dubai restaurant. Photo: KashKan
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When award-winning Indian chef Ranveer Brar launched his Dubai restaurant earlier this year, he told The National he was keen to capture the breadth of Indian cuisine.

Accordingly, KashKan is a portmanteau of Kashmir, the northernmost point of the country, and Kanyakumari, a town in South India.

A countrywide staple, daal is a dish that almost every Indian has grown up with. Nutritious, hearty and inexpensive, the meal of lentils with rice or roti is, arguably, the tastiest yet humblest of all Indian curries.

Which is not to say it is always kept simple. From the opulent black daal garnished with heavy cream in North India's Mughlai cuisine, to southern state Tamil Nadu's sundal, made with chickpeas, curry leaves, coconut and a tadka of spices – a bowl of daal can be as basic or as elaborate as its diner's preferences.

Daal infused with real 24k gold might be a first, though. And what better place to serve it than Dubai, asks Brar.

“The idea was to amalgamate the richness of Indian cuisine with the vibrancy of Dubai,” the chef tells The National. “Daal KashKan comes flavoured with 24k gold that is prepared with the best spices and pure ghee. Each shimmering speck tells a story of fusion, inviting guests to indulge in a culinary dish that transcends borders and embraces the spirit of both India and Dubai.”

And, at Dh58 for a bowl, this won't exactly break the bank.

Health impact of edible gold

What about its health benefits, though? We ask the experts whether adding edible gold, which has no nutritional value whatsoever, might not be doing more harm than good.

Dr Tejaswi Kotakonda, specialist internal medicine at Aster Hospital, Muhaisnah, says: “Edible gold, when used as a garnish or decorative ingredient, is considered safe for consumption in small amounts. It's typically inert and passes through the digestive system without being absorbed.”

However, he adds, the quantity matters. “In small amounts, such as the minuscule quantities used on food, it's unlikely to cause harm. But consuming large quantities regularly may not be advisable due to the lack of comprehensive research on its long-term effects. As with anything, moderation is key.”

Dr Kotakonda also says those with allergies to metals should exercise caution. “While allergic reactions to gold are rare, they're not impossible. Consulting with a healthcare professional for personalised advice is recommended for those with pre-existing health conditions or concerns.

“Finally, edible gold products must meet specific regulatory standards and should be purchased from reputable sources to ensure safety,” he says.

Other gold-encrusted dishes and drinks in Dubai

Brar's is not the only restaurant in the UAE garnishing its food with edible gold. Here are five more to try.

  1. Gold strip loin steak, Dh900, Doors Freestyle Grill, Dubai
  2. Charcoal ice cream with edible gold, Dh100, Scoopi, Dubai
  3. White chocolate cheesecake with popcorn and 23k gold, Dh79, Armani Lounge, Dubai
  4. Fountain Golden cappuccino, Dh75, Emirates Palace Mandarin Oriental, Abu Dhabi
  5. Gold leaf har gau dim sum, Dh48, Hakkasan Abu Dhabi
Updated: December 15, 2023, 6:46 AM