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Indian food recommendations
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GladToBeHere
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
 
2006-02-05, 11:35

As I have no one to personally usher me into the world of Indian food, I'm looking for suggestions about what to order and why. I enjoy trying new stuff, so I'm just wondering if people have favorite dishes they think a newbie should try.
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Banana
is the next Chiquita
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
 
2006-02-05, 11:53

I love Indian food, especially one dumpling-like appetizer; which name escapes me at the moment... I'll come with the name.

Curries are a good start for newbies, but if you really want to jump in, any non-curry food is a good start. Just one thing to keep in mind; it may not look beautiful, but it always tastes great.
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stratotom
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
 
2006-02-05, 11:57

You thinking of samosa?
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AWR
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: State of Flux
 
2006-02-05, 12:00

It's ALL good. That's my recommendation. And a mango lassi.
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iCraig
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Manchester, England.
 
2006-02-05, 12:02

If you go to an indian restaurant forget things like Korma's and Masala go for a Karahi, its a Punjabi style curry, and there bloomin' lovely!
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GladToBeHere
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
 
2006-02-05, 12:22

Thanks for the responses. Anyone know about vindaloo? Any good?
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ghoti
owner for sale by house
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Charlotte, NC
 
2006-02-05, 12:27

You really can't go wrong with Indian food. Generally, northern Indian is less hot than southern (even Indians from nothern India say they can't eat south Indian food), and it's also more saucy. Try a Murgh Saag (chicken in spinach sauce), or something similar. Get some Naan (bread) and rice, the Naan is much more interesting, but the rice is good to have if it gets too spicy (don't drink, eat some rice to get rid of the pain in your mouth ). And tell them not to tone it down too much, get some middle-to-high spicyness. Just stay away from the green curry for the beginning. And I second the Mango Lassi. I'm sure you'll love Indian.

Great, now I'm hungry ...
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Koodari
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
 
2006-02-05, 12:40

One of the best dishes at our #1 local Indian restaurant has pieces of fresh cheese swimming in a green herb-vegetable-spinach sauce.
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Banana
is the next Chiquita
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
 
2006-02-05, 12:41

Yeah, Samosa.
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Bryson
Rocket Surgeon
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Whitby
 
2006-02-05, 12:46

I just, this minute, popped a Tikka Masala I made myself in the Oven. Mmmmm....smells good.

If it's your first foray, look for somewhere that does Passanda - it's as mild as Korma, but with more interesting flavours. Or, if you don't like creamy/yoghurty stuff, try a Dupiaza, which is full of onions. Chicken Tikka on puri is pretty tasty, too.

You don't say where you are, but you haven't had a curry until you've gone to Birmingham or Bradford, UK. (I am, of course, assuming that by "Indian Food" you mean Anglicised Indian Food. And there's nothing wrong with that!)

I love Keema Nan (bread stuffed with spiced Mincemeat) and Onion Bhajis, too. My sister loves Paneer (Indian Cheese).

Man, it's all good. Steer clear of Rogan Josh, Vindaloo or anything really hot for now, until you're sure what you like. To be honest, I prefer the "girly" creamy stuff, as I think the lower heat allows you to enjoy the flavours more.

Banana: FYI: A Samosa is a triangular folded bread folded around a filling - most likely minced lamb and peas. Pretty good. Not sure what you mean by dumpling, unless you mean Onion Bhaji?
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ghoti
owner for sale by house
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Charlotte, NC
 
2006-02-05, 13:01

The best way of tasting some authentic Indian food is of course to befriend some Indians and get invited for dinner . Short of going to India, that is ...

Also, when you get tired of Indian food, you should try some Nepalese. It's similar to Indian, but they have some excellent stuff, too.
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Mac+
9" monochrome
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: 🇦🇺
 
2006-02-05, 13:03

Ah, coincidence ... we had this tonight. Head of Campus thinks the place where we order from is the best Indian food he has tasted outside of India - irony being it is a small restaurant in Nanjing.

Vegetarian dishes are usually great. I love the Paneer Saag (fresh cottage cheese with freshly pureed spinach and delicate spices that Koodari mentioned) and Paneer Makhani (cottage cheese in creamy tomato gravy with herbs and butter).

Murgh Butter (or "butter chicken") is also a favourite for many because it is not too spicy.

Definitely try something from the clay oven - tandoori style.

Also, a Cucumber Raita (seasoned yogurt with cucumbers) is a great side dish to dip your naan or papadams in - and also to quell the fire in your mouth should anything you eat be too much to handle (although, nothing I have presented will test you in this way).

Also, a mango lassi is a must. They are delicious.

One more thing - at this place, before we leave we each get a small individual packet of mixed herbs, musk and mint as a breath freshener. Anyone ever had them? They're awesome.
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Bryson
Rocket Surgeon
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Whitby
 
2006-02-05, 13:29

It's also worth bearing in mind that many "Indian" restaurants are actually run by people from Bangladesh...
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GladToBeHere
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
 
2006-02-05, 13:38

Wow, thanks everyone. I'm excited to try now. I'll have to have someone else come and we'll order different stuff to try.
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Quagmire
meh
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2006-02-05, 14:02

I second the Chicken Tikka. It is so good. If there is an option, get the mild one. That is already a kick to your tongue.
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Luca
ಠ_ರೃ
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2006-02-05, 14:04

Make sure you get some of that spicy mint sauce (don't know what it's called) to have with your samosas. That's some good stuff.

I have not had a ton of different Indian foods (and most of them I have had were at buffet restaurants so I never knew what the things were called), but I do recognize quite a few of the names people have been throwing out there. I do remember having Chicken Tikka Masala and Palak Paneer, and a lot of others. There's one made with potatoes, garbanzo beans, and cauliflower that I like.

Oh, and you have to make sure you get some rice pudding! The other dessert I see at the Indian restaurants I've been to is a kind of fried dough ball served in honey. Again, I don't know the name, but it's basically the same as a doughnut hole. Yum!

This thread is making my hungry!
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GladToBeHere
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
 
2006-02-05, 14:45

This all started because I saw an Indian restaurant featured on Food Network (for spicy food). One of the dishes required verbal consent to eat it-- that you take full responsibility for an physical and emotional damage the spice may do to you. lol

That hot may not be a good thing for me, but I do like spicy stuff.

Anything particularly good that's pretty hot (but not consciousness altering a la Homer Simpson)?
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SKMDC
superkaratemonkeydeathcar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: chicago
Send a message via AIM to SKMDC  
2006-02-05, 15:00

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luca
Make sure you get some of that spicy mint sauce (don't know what it's called) to have with your samosas. That's some good stuff.
Chutney?

Milwaukee Wisconsin, (where I lived during the 90's)oddly enough, has many great middle eastern and Indian restaurants, I just can't remember what anything was called. My wife has more expertise. I just remember that everything was so cheap that you could try something and if it didn't work out you weren't out much.
Here in Chicago up on Belmont Street they have a few places with buffets for lunch, that's a good way to experiment.

My one recommendation is have an ice cold KingFisher (if Mr. Sethna would approve*) the Coors of India.

*a cigar to anyone who knows this reference.

"What's a Canadian farm boy to do?"
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Bryson
Rocket Surgeon
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Whitby
 
2006-02-05, 15:02

Spicy mint sauce is Raita.
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drewprops
Space Pirate
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Atlanta
 
2006-02-05, 16:19

I really like having poppadoms when I'm in an English pub and I *know* that they're Indian in origin. Me old mate Dave Lister used to swear by them.

Steve Jobs ate my cat's watermelon.
Captain Drew on Twitter
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GSpotter
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: A small town near Wolfsburg, Germany
 
2006-02-05, 18:31

Try Ian Andersons Guide to Indian Food
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GladToBeHere
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
 
2006-02-05, 18:52

Thanks GSpotter. Jethro Tull website. Interesting...
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pilot1129
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Alexandria, VA
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2006-02-05, 19:46

I've grown up eating it all my life. Helps to be Indian sometimes. But you HAVE to try butter chicken with naan. Any GOOD indian restaurant will be able to make you up some.

where do you live anyway? I may be able to suggest some good places.
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AWR
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: State of Flux
 
2006-02-05, 20:02

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryson
Spicy mint sauce is Raita.
Sorry to correct the Brit, but Raita is a yogurt sauce spiced any which way. You still the man Bryson.
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GladToBeHere
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
 
2006-02-05, 21:42

I'm in Miami, FL.
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ironlung
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: "Chambana", IL
 
2006-02-05, 22:19

being of pakistani origin.. i grew up eating indian/pakistani food... punjabi food in my opinion is the best. India and pakistan have punjab split in two... Try biryani. Go with a lamb biryani. Its really hard to make... but it tastes so damn good... however a bad restaurant can spoil it quite easily. No indian/pakistani restaurant can mess up a curry though... but try a karahi.. chicken karahi or karahi gosht (gosht means meat, but in this case it stands for lamb mostly). Very easy to make and tastes amazing.

Edit: Avoid those ready to make indian spices stuff. It tastes awful. The best thing about indian food is that you can distinguish between the spices. Such pastes lose their individual flavors over time.
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ironlung
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: "Chambana", IL
 
2006-02-05, 22:21

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryson
Spicy mint sauce is Raita.
Not correct. Spicy mint sauce is Chutni (pudina chutni). Raita has a lil bit of mint in it.. but thats not what it is. There are several different variations of raita.
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ironlung
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: "Chambana", IL
 
2006-02-05, 22:23

Quote:
Originally Posted by SKMDC
Chutney?

Milwaukee Wisconsin, (where I lived during the 90's)oddly enough, has many great middle eastern and Indian restaurants, I just can't remember what anything was called. My wife has more expertise. I just remember that everything was so cheap that you could try something and if it didn't work out you weren't out much.
Here in Chicago up on Belmont Street they have a few places with buffets for lunch, that's a good way to experiment.

My one recommendation is have an ice cold KingFisher (if Mr. Sethna would approve*) the Coors of India.

*a cigar to anyone who knows this reference.
Have you gone to devon st?
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Mac+
9" monochrome
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: 🇦🇺
 
2006-02-05, 22:28

Quote:
Originally Posted by GSpotter
Did someone reference Jethro Tull? Reminds me ... the new Yacht Rock ( couldn't help myself) features them - although it ain't a patch on the earlier episodes.

PS - this quote from the 'flute-meister' cracks me up:
Quote:
Nothing disrupts a band sound-check like the pervasive after-effects of the Tarka Dhal (lentils and garlic).
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InactionMan
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2006-02-05, 23:32

I recently moved into Toronto's Little India neighbourhood so I finally got around to trying Indian and it really is all good. And I can't remember the names of any of the dishes because I just go into the restaurants and tell them to give me a bunch of good stuff. That bread is awesome, I think it's called Nahn. And there's a brutally hot thing called Dahl or something that makes me weep but I can never stop eating.

I don't think you can go wrong with any of it.
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