Posts Tagged ‘Indian food’

New India Cuisine quick-lunch

New India Cuisine brings new dining pleasures to South Austin, including two of the most refreshing beverages available anywhere in town to help the hot and thirsty withstand our hot weather. These are homemade fresh ginger soda and homemade fresh lime soda. The first is extremely generous with fresh ginger-root and is sweeter than the deliciously tart lime drink. I think we must ask for both the next time we visit.

New India Cuisine shares space with Eva B’s Bakery in the shopping center at South Congress and Oltorf that’s directly east and across the street from H-E-B and across Oltorf from the Twin Oaks shopping center. The door faces south and the building is at a right angle to the former Bealls, now AceMart.

Orders are placed at the counter and paid for at that time. We were famished and too tired to deliberate and so were delighted to follow suggestions from the owners. We began with Wada, which arrived accompanied by a delicious mint chutney and a tamarind chutney. These were seasoned potato cakes, which I’d gladly order again. At the table was a generous bowl of boneless chicken pieces in a coconut curry. Rice was beautifully seasoned. I enjoyed my curry of cauliflower and potato with tomato and seasonings. Our garlic naan was hot and a wonderful accompaniment. I plan to return again and again for the dal tarka malvani style (a broth of yellow lentils with black mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and curry leaves), as beautiful as it was tasty.

Menu options include many vegan and gluten-free selections. WiFi is free. New India Cuisine is closed on Monday and closed daily from 3 to 5 pm. Call 445-9727 for more information or to place a takeout order.

India Kitchen quick-lunch

I don’t like to be involuntarily subjected to the same recorded music over and over again, and at this time of year the repetition can be difficult to avoid. At India Kitchen sometimes the background is classical music from the Subcontinent; today it sounded like instrumental music from the movies.

The food was perfect for a chilly, blustery day. The temperatures are higher today than they were yesterday, but somehow it looks and feels more like winter. We were warmed by the lentil soup from the buffet. I meant to try the tomato version, but was drawn back to enjoy a second bowl of the lentil one. Naan bread came piping hot to the table.

The napkins are still generous in size and still of cloth. Although others did, I did not indulge in tandoor chicken or in chicken vindaloo or in saagh paneer. My favorite was the dish of lamb kofta meatballs, in a tasty sauce and made with no mystery or unsightly ingredients, just beautiful ground meat zestfully seasoned. I also enjoyed a dish of cooked cabbage, one of potatoes and peas, and one of large yellow lentils cooked with dices of tomatoes. The chicken biriyani rice and the pilao rice were both delicious. There were samosas and pakora, which I sampled bits of from others’ plates and enjoyed, but I was very happy that I devoted my attentions to the particular dishes that I did. I loved it that cardamom, one of my favorite spices, was in generous use in one dish.

Except a couple of times when I’ve seen tables of students dining on vegetarian dishes delivered from directly from the kitchen, buffet dining there is all I know so far, because I’ve never been to India Kitchen in the evening. I know that there’s now food at the Whip-In Parlour Cafe and that the Eva B’s Bakery & Cafe across from the Congress / Oltorf H-E-B prepares an Indian meal on Fridays. The survival of India Kitchen south of the river has probably served to encourage these newcomers. Anyhow, India Kitchen saved our lives today with wholesome and tasty food that will see us through the workday, no matter how long it turns out to be. Thank you!

Delectable dal

After a tough week, the prospect of the weekend buffet at Taj Palace was attractive. It had been a while, and seekh kebab seems to be available on weekends only. The dal today was the best ever, not too thin, and seasoned with lots of whole spices with large bits of red chile pepper visible and even small bits of identifiable small yellow lentils or split peas or the like. The perfect accompaniment was the constantly refilled tall glass of iced tea, served with an entire quarter of a good-sized lime. It was a treat to find samber (sometimes transliterated as sambhar) on the buffet table, another delicious broth and one full of fresh vegetables. Although the naan was somehow different, softer in texture without so many air puffs, and a tiny bit disappointing, every other item tasted was delicious, and we tasted every dish. The person who sampled the rice pudding enjoyed it very much and reported that it was seasoned with cardamom. There was a good-sized child’s birthday party in another room, dining from the same buffet; perhaps the host specified some of the dishes served. Most of those making up a large party of over a dozen people in our room were obvious academics. Our lunch was a great restorative and the perfect choice for today. As we made our way home, we stopped at various library branches, some of which were polling places. Reports are that turnout is light on this election day. The polls don’t close until 7 pm, so there’s still time for laggards to vote in this important contest.

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