Thursday, August 4, 2011

A Little Something New At Streets Of India

I love trying new restaurants. Sure, I've eaten at most of the Vegetarian/Vegan restaurants in LA, but every so often I come across a place I've never been or more shockingly, never heard of. My stomach always ties in knots in fear I may not like the place, but my head rushes with excitement in hopes I will discover a true gem. I recently found about a Vegetarian Indian cafe in Encino that sounded amazing. Their menu closely resembles that of the beloved Samosa House, with a Southern India flare. Even better, they are featured on My friend and I decided to venture to the valley one evening, where the weather was humid and balmy. On our short walk from the car to the restaurant, we found ourselves drenched in sweat. Since the restaurant was about to close, we quickly placed our order.

First, our appetizers came out. We ordered Samosas ($4) and Idli Sambar ($4). I first tried a samosa.

These samosas were some of the best I've ever had. They were so perfectly deep fried and crispy, with the interior being so soft and delectable. The seasonings were amazing and it was a little spicier than samosas I've had in the past.

Next, I had an idli.

I wasn't sure to expect from this, as I've never had this appetizer before. I believe it is a South Indian delicacy. The patties were very soft and spongy. On their own, they had a very mild flavor, but dipped in the spicy sambar soup, they took on an intense lentil flavoring.

Next, our entrees came out. I first tried the Masala Dosa ($6), which was ginormous.

The crepe was a little crispier than the dosas I'm used to, especially on the outer ends. The inside had a softer texture and was easier to bite into. The crepe was so moist and had a very slight sweetness to it. The potato filling was soft and smooth with a medium spiciness.

Next, I had the soy Chicken Saag ($8).

I have to admit, I was a little worried about ordering this dish. Saag entrees can be a bit tasteless and the spinach is often overcooked. This was not the case with this saag at all. The dish was perfectly spiced and flavorful and the spinach had a fantastic texture. It was very soft and slightly creamy and was so easy to chew. The chicken also had a delectable seasoning and tasted so much like the real thing.

Next, I had the Jackfruit Masala ($7.75).

Jackfruit is my favorite Indian dish and whenever I see it on a menu, I have to order it. I've been a huge fan of the jackfruit at the Samosa House for quite a while and now I am a convert to the Streets Of India's version. The jackfruit was so luscious and savory and took on a meaty flavor so well. The dish was heavily spiced but balanced out by the juicy, sweet tomatoes.

Lastly, we had some Tandoori Roti ($2).

I was not a huge fan of this bread. It was a little dry and lacked much seasoning. It was also a little too hard and difficult to eat.

The servers were very friendly and accommodating and despite the casual atmosphere, they continued to bring us over some chutneys.

The coconut chutney was my favorite. It was fairly sweet with just a hint of spice. The tomato chutney was also delicious, with a very mild spice.

Overall, I really enjoyed the food. Everything was so flavorful and the dishes were so beautifully spiced. I also love that they incorporated faux meats into traditional dishes, as this would definitely please any omnivore or transitioning Vegetarian/Vegan. I also really love how the food is inexpensive and the portions are large. This place is truly street food at its best. With the $25 gift certificate, we spent less than $7 per person, including tax and tip. I will definitely be back to take advantage of this great deal again, even though the restaurant is a bit of a trek.

No comments:

Post a Comment