The Big Green Egg, an Atlanta-based brand of ceramic grills, is widely considered a Southern cooking implement. Although its original design was based on a Japanese kamado, recipes currently featured on the company’s homepage include bacon-weave pork tenderloin, ribs and grilled pineapple-upside down cake.
“Judging by crowd photos at Eggfests, most users — like the Parrotheads at a Jimmy Buffett concert — are fun-seeking white guys over 35,” Atlanta Magazine’s Candice Dyer wrote in a 2015 story about the brand’s cultish popularity.
But Indian food aficionados have figured out how to exploit the cooker’s similarity to a tandoor, South Asia’s traditional cylindrical oven. The Egg’s fierce internal temperature and radiant heat allow them to produce naans and kebabs far superior to what they could make in a conventional oven.
“The Green Egg actually retains the flavor of the marinade and keeps the meat really juicy,” says Vik Patel, who bought his first Egg about a decade ago. “It doesn’t dry it out.”
Patel typically cooks at home. He’s even constructed an outdoor kitchen to house his Big Green Egg, which “gets better as he gets older.” This weekend, though, he’s planning to prepare a few of his favorite dishes at Workshop, which has installed a pair of XLarge Big Green Eggs for occasional cookouts.
The Saturday pop-up marks Patel’s professional debut. A sales manager by trade, Patel taught himself to cook 30 years ago as a college student in London.
“I guess I’m a little bit nervous,” he says. “I’ve cooked for large parties, about 30 or 40 people, but not in a retail environment.”
Saturday’s menu, served from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., will include two kinds of chicken; raita and naan. For more information, search “Dhaba 13” on Facebook.