There is no denying that ‘Poder’, derived from padeiro, meaning baker in Portuguese, is not just a word but an emotion for Goans! The aroma of soft, freshly baked ‘poie’ or ‘poee’ bread in the air, brought to their doorstep by the beloved Poder evokes fond memories for every Goan, and Hilton Goa Resort, Candolim successfully rekindled this warm nostalgia recently for its esteemed guests.
But why all this hype about the humble bread, you ask? While on one hand, many people in cities kept themselves busy during the lockdown with home cooking and learning how to bake a variety of artisanal bread, the situation looked grim for several old-world Goan bakers. The traditional bread making in Goa, an art that was already becoming less popular due to quicker, modern adaptations, faced a further downward hit due to business shutdowns during the pandemic. This greatly impacted the livelihoods of local bread makers, bakeries and also bread carriers..
The expert team at Hilton Goa Resort showcased and revived these soft, airy poie breads with a twist across several contemporary, delicious dishes that reimagined Goa’s timeliness recipes and were a joy to everyone’s taste buds. The Maka Kullyo Zai, featured slow-cooked xacuti crab combined with charcoal-grilled bread, highlighting traditional Goan cuisine with a modern twist; the Maas-ka-pao or the Buff Tart, an ode to Goa’s love for canapes and a delectable crowd-favourite featured a tart base made from crusted pao crumble and delicious vindaloo filling. Another quintessential dish was Avo’s Kakon, which showcased Goa’s favourite Kakon or ‘bangle bread’ in a fusion form with cafreal mock meat, avocado, salsa and fresh microgreens.
This and other exceptional dishes like Pork-a-que and Balcao in Saipem, curated by expert chefs at the Hilton Goa Resort enhanced the taste, tradition and cooking versatility of the soulful Goan bread. Each dish reflected the beauty of the flavorful Goan bread made with an authentic local touch while organically reviving the rich history and traditional art of Goan bread making.
The Poder Chronicles at Hilton Goa Resort was a one-of-a-kind experience for guests as they soaked in the stunning views of Saipem Hills, while reminiscing the joyful Poder, who carried freshly baked bread on his cycle every morning, signifying the start of a new day in Goa, as locals woke up to the distinctive sound of his cycle horn, eagerly awaiting delicious poie bread to relish!