PICS: TRISHNA RANA
Until a few years ago, the long stretch from Old Baneswor Chok to Gaushala wasn't particularly known for its eateries. All that changed for good when Just Baked popped right next to an established, but boring joint along the same lane.
Just Baked offers what most other cafes in Kathmandu do: chicken chili, momo, pakodas, and chow mein. What sets it apart, though, is the simplicity with which each dish on its elaborate menu is prepared. The cafe's delectable selection of cakes and pastries deserves a special mention.
Sadly, the Lord of Fries (Rs 100) was a disappointing start. Topped clumsily with onions and mayonnaise, the fried potatoes were soggy, and there was nothing grand about this pretender. After this lacklustre fare, we made a safe bet and ordered the good old chicken momo hoping to get our taste buds rolling.
Equally appetising was the barbeque chicken wings (Rs 140) that had us picking every last sinew. Although the chicken wings were perfectly crispy and begged to be had for seconds, they were slightly burnt in places and could have been better prepared.
The star, however, was the chicken stroganoff (Rs 210) which tasted just as good as it looked on the plate. The soft chicken strips and mushroom slices in the velvety sauce were packed with just the right amount of sour cream. They went perfectly well with the generous helping of rice and sautéed vegetables. Only one complaint: better ventilation would make meals much easier to sit through.
The American brownie looks hard on the outside but when you bite into it, the moist chocolate melts in your mouth leaving your teeth to fare with the nutty toppings. A scoop of vanilla ice-cream is the ideal companion.
If you are lucky enough to find fruit tart at the cafe, don't miss out on the sinful goodness of whipped cream, custard, and fresh fruits all packed together into a sweet pastry mix.
With its casual ambience, a select assortment of pastries, and a menu that won't impale your wallet, Just Baked aims to please.