How To Choose A Good Indian Restaurant

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Indian cuisine is hugely popular across the world.

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Whether you love hot spicy curries or are happy with naan bread and chutnies, finding a good Indian restaurant adelaide can be the start of a great thing for you and your family.

Usually family-run, many good Indian restaurants have a whole list of regular customers who return time and time again.

Décor and Design

Don’t be put off by décor and design. Indian restaurants are focused on the food and to them it’s far more important to have a dish full of flavours than a room full of fancy chairs and napkins.

Always keep an open mind when visiting an Indian restaurant and don’t shy away from places that look less than fancy. If they’re packed full of people, it’s usually a better indication that they’re worth a try then if there’s art work on the walls.

Fresh Ingredients

Taj Tandoor Indian Restaurant Adelaide

Taj Tandoor Indian Restaurant Adelaide

Although some ingredients found in curries may be frozen, the majority should be fresh – especially the vegetables.

Most good Indian restaurants have boxes of vegetables and bags of onions delivered outside their doors each morning as the focus of curries and breads such as naan is the freshness of them.

Indian Geography

North or South?

It’s fascinating to research the different cuisines that come from each part of India.

  • The type of food most people in the West associate with ‘Indian food’ is generally from the North of India and relates to curries based around meat, fish or vegetables.
  • In the South, the cuisine focuses around more dough based dishes – in particular the Dosa pancakes which have recently become popular outside of the country.

Location

Many Indian restaurants set up where there is a demand from local people who know about good Indian food. Often, this can be in the kitchens at an Indian temple, in the back of a local Indian grocery store or some even start off in the downstairs of someone’s home.

Although many good Indian restaurants may be on the main high streets or in fancy city centres, don’t be afraid to search for them elsewhere. 

Often times a great indian restaurant will have the latest decor and even feature cool windows with custom window tinting options.

Other Diners

If you’re standing outside an Indian restaurant and can’t decide whether to go in, have a quick look at the other diners. Who is eating there? Large groups of Indian families is always an excellent sign.

Similarly, always ask around friends, colleagues and people in your neighbourhood for recommendations – Indian restaurants rarely advertise so word of mouth is crucial in discovering the best ones to go to. 

Ordering Indian Food

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Any good Indian restaurant will help you with your order. If dishes are cooked fresh, there shouldn’t be a problem with adapting them to suit your specific tastes so always feel free to request something a little more or less spicy, or switch chicken with prawns or beef. We personally love the way Taj Tandoor make their Indian food in their Adelaide restaurant.

If you’re unsure of what to order, tell the waiting staff the type of thing you like and they should be able to recommend some dishes you may like.

Best Foods To Eat At An Indian Restaurant

Indian Food

Are you a beginner when it comes to Indian cuisine? Or perhaps you’re a big fan but want to branch out from your usual order and try something a little different.

The great thing is that Indian restaurants offer a vast range of different dishes – many of them ideal for sharing – so there’ll always be something delicious for you to enjoy.

Indian Food

Starting off when choosing what to eat at an Indian restaurant:

Many people think a simple plate of poppadoms is the best way to start any Indian meal. However ,there are lots of other starters on offer you won’t want to miss out on.

Why not try one of the following?

  • Samosas: these pastries can be baked or fried and come in a triangular shape. They are generally filled with vegetables such as peas, potatoes and onions. Great for sharing, these are only lightly spiced so should suit everyone.
  • Chutney and Raita: Chutneys are usually either red or green depending on whether they’re made from tamarind or mint and coriander. They’re the perfect accompaniment to samosas, poppadoms or naan bread. Raita is another sauce – yoghurt based with spices such as cilantro, mint or cumin. Save your raita in case you need it to tone down spicy dishes to come!

The Main Event

If you’re keen on curries, there’s a whole world of them to explore. Here are some ideas: http://www.sbs.com.au/food/cuisine/indian

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The three most popular Indian curries are:

  1. Chicken Korma – ideal for those wanting a rich, buttery curry this is one of the most ordered dishes both in India and across the rest of the world in Indian restaurants.
  2. Rojan Josh – add your choice of prawns, chicken, beef to any rogan josh for a light, tomato based curry.
  3. Chana Masala– ‘chana’ are small garbanzo beans blended with chopped tomatoes, onions and spices. This is a great option for vegetarians.

Always check whether rice is included and if not, choose from pilau, plain, steamed or coconut rice.

If you’re not fussed by curries, there are always other Indian dishes to try– using meat, fish and vegetables. Why not try one of these alternative options?

  • Pakora: this is a tasty tempura like dish, usually battered vegetables but occasionally with chicken inside.
  • Tandoori Chicken: If you’re a fan of roasted chicken, you’ll love this dish – named after the ‘tandoor’ oven in which it’s created. The bright orange appearance of the chicken is down to the blend of spices (including paprika, turmeric and cayenne pepper) used in the recipe.
  • Saag Paneer: don’t be put off by the appearance of this. Creamed green vegetables with cubes of soft cheese is one of the most popular Indian dishes and full of flavour.

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Chai Time

Indian desserts are always best enjoyed with tea. Chai Tea is one of the most popular types of tea and has grown hugely in popularity in recent years. Enjoy the strong spiced flavour with or without milk.