I have never had Indian food before so please excuse me if this post sounds like I have no idea what I am talking about:
Scott and I had this meal a couple weeks ago after seeing the movie, "Descendants" with George Clooney. Scott picked the movie because it was shot in Hawaii, that was the best part of the whole film. I cried, I always cry though. Anyhow, on our way out of the theater we decided we would give Bollywood #4 a try.
Shortly after sitting down we were given a trio of chutney and a plate of freshly cooked flat-bread. Imagine these like chips and salsa as if you were at a Mexican food place. I loved it. It was spicy, sweet and salty if you mixed them all up on a piece of the crisp bread. My favorite part of the meal, hands down.
Ok, from left to right: Polau Rice, Shrimp Curry and Fish Coconut Curry. We didn't like it. Either we ordered the wrong thing or we just don't care for Indian food. I wanted to love it, I really did. I was kind of shocked because I usually prefer ethnic foods and spices.
Attention Indian food eaters: What do you order?
Always onion bhaji. Often chicken pakora and garlic naan. And either shrimp karahi or chicken tikka masala.
Alright, you helped me with the best romantic Ojai restaurant, so I feel its my duty to help you out with Indian food!
I actually cook it from scratch and a close frind of mine happens to be Indian.
The cracker-like thing you ate is called poppadom and its delish!
Try this place again, but this time order:
1. Chicken Tikka Masala - chicken with tomato based sauce (doesn't taste like marinara. Very diff taste but perfect for an Indian Food Virgin!!
Chicken Makhni AKA Butter Chicken - chicken in a super creamy/velvety sauce
2. Tandoori Shrimp, fish, or chicken
3. Roti or Naan Bread - a must have to scoop up the yummy sauciness in the food
3. Raita - yogurt based sauce that's yummy to dip your naan in
4. Rice/Biryani - order the most simple rice they have because the rest of the food is so rich
5. Vegetable - Deepending on what you like, I would suggest one of these-
- Saag Aloo - mixture of potatoes and spinach
- Aloo Gobi - potatos and cauliflower
- Channa Masala (my fav) spiced garbanzo beans
- Bhindi Masala - Okra and tomatoes
6. If you want an extra dish, order veg samosas - large potato-filled dumpling that's fried to perfection
Try this stuff first and then ask again and I will give you some step 2 menu items to order. The key with Indian food is you have to start slowly and work your way up, kind of like running ;-)
I wish I could recommend one single thing, but the fact is that to my American palate, most Indian food is glop. However, it does taste very good, gloppiness notwithstanding. So I say either go to an upscale place or a hole-in-the-wall actual Indians eat at and just get a variety -- some chicken, some vegetables, some lamb -- and go by the server's suggestion. They should be used to helping confused white people.
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