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New menu from Liverpool’s Maray and Manchester’s Bundobust is a match made in heaven

By Ben Arnold

Liverpool’s acclaimed Middle East-meets-Paris restaurant Maray is all set to arrive in Manchester this summer. Currently under construction just off Albert Square, soon enough we’ll be able to experience its signature ‘disco cauliflower’ dish without having to hit the M62.

But for those keen to get an idea of what’s in store, Maray has got together with Indian street food heroes Bundobust for a special collaboration, mashing up some of the classics from each of their menus. And the Manchester Evening News got a sneak preview of the new dishes this week.

The aforementioned - and much talked about - ‘disco cauliflower’ at Maray is a whole head of cauliflower, roasted and then drenched with yoghurt, chermoula and pomegranate. For the Bundobust collab, it’s melded it with the iconic Mumbai snack Bhel Puri, hurling in the caramelised cauli with puffed rice, samosa pastry, and the Maray elements of harissa and zhug, a spicy sauce featuring chillies, parsley, coriander, garlic and cardamom.

The halloumi tikka (Manchester Evening News)

it’s an obvious winner, and it’s shovelled in with a regrettable lack of grace or manners. Sorry to anyone who was watching. Bundo’s winning okra fries have been adapted as ‘Jazzy Fries’, now drizzled with tahini sauce and ‘tamarind balsamic’. What could possibly be not to like?

The paneer tikka has been swapped out for halloumi, which has been marinated in tikka masala yoghurt, before being crisped on the barbecue and slathered in a yoghurt sauce, dukkah, sumac and - the star of the show - a Persian sour cherry jam, which brings the all-important tang.

The Valafel Pav (Manchester Evening News)

Messing with the Bundobust Vada Pav - the fried potato burger - is a dangerous game. This is a dish which has its own merch. But nonetheless, the spiced potato patty has been turned into a bright green falafel-potato hybrid, deep fried and coated in harissa and onion chutney, and then nestled in a brioche bun.

The risk has thankfully paid off, but beware eating an entire one yourself. You might need a lie down afterwards. It’s hefty. And as an added bonus, every Valafel Pav bought will see £1 donated to Eat Well MCR, chef Mary-Ellen McTague’s non-profit helping those in food poverty in Manchester. And if you order the Bundo x Maray combo for two (which is all the dishes in one), Eat Well gets £2.

Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Maray’s Tom White said: “We’ve eaten at Bundo’s millions of times, so we know which dishes were the flagship ones, the big hitters. These ones are our favourites, so we thought ‘how can we put a Maray twist on them’. So pretty big boots to fill.

Tom White of Maray (Dan Burns)

“We had the biggest question over the Vada Pav. We wanted to get our falafel in there, but the Vada Pav is iconic, so we were worried like, ‘will this work?’ But we tried it out, and I reckon we’ve pulled it off.”

Bundobust co-founder Mayur Patel added: “To be honest, we just fit together. There wasn’t too much messing about. We have the same respect for eachother, so we just wanted to put a little spin on both our dishes. Part of the reason we wanted to open on Bold Street in Liverpool was because we’re massive fans of Maray.”

The Bundobust x Maray menu is available now at the Bundobust sites on Piccadilly Gardens and Oxford Road, and at Bundobust in Liverpool too, until May 22.

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Dive Deeper:
Street Food Circus returns to Roath Yard in Cardiff this weekend
There are 19 street food vendors on rotation over four fabulous food-tastic weekends
Edinburgh restaurant voted Scotland's best Indian by Uber Eats hailed as 'heavenly curry mecca'
This place is often queued out the door and from the customer reviews it's easy to see why, with some…
Best places to eat in Liverpool according to the Good Food Guide
These are the Liverpool restaurants everyone needs to try in 2022
Party hearty
Word of mouth is the best referral, even in this day and age of social media. So when I heard…
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
We visited Edinburgh's Scottish Vegan Festival and mouthwatering food will have us back next year
There was plenty of flavour-packed food to choose from at the vegan festival, which was a celebration of all things…
We tried the Edinburgh ramen restaurant taking part in Britain's Top Takeaways and had mixed views
We tried ramen from one of the Edinburgh restaurants competing in Edinburgh's Best British Takeaways which aires tonight - Monday…
Get all your news in one place