If you’ve never tried Indian food, I think it’s time that you give it a try. After all, over one billion Indians eat this stuff every day – more than all our hotdogs and cheeseburgers put together.
Indian Food in Pueblo, Act II: Mr. Tandoori. I arrive just after six with a date on my arm to find a packed restaurant with a line out the door, which bodes well for a good meal. To look at the packed house, it seems Puebloans might be tired of the limited verity of culinary options and are desperate for something different.
We are seated in the middle of the dinning room (in the space that has housed a string of restaurants, most recently, Galileo’s) to find new carpet, freshly painted and textured wall, and elegant hardwood dining tables. Limited art and decoration give this place a sophisticated feel.
A glance over the menu and I was admittedly overwhelmed. Luckily, my date is a bit more cultured then I am. She suggests garlic naan to start and a thick mango lassi to compliment the spice. Naan, as I learned, is a soft flatbread eaten with a meal. A lassi can only be described as flavored liquid yogurt that you can’t stop drinking.
My entree, Lamb Saag, looks like a bowl of mud with grass clippings. Tender cuts of lamb are slow cooked in cream, spinach and spices. It honestly scared me a little a first, but after only a few bites I was hooked. Its flavor is hard to describe because it is so complex: garlic, ginger, spinach, turmeric and lamb, to start, in a sauce with a very creamy texture. A big chunk of lamb soaking in all the essence of the saag wrapped in a strip of the naan is heavenly.
My second dish (a.k.a. my date’s meal), Chicken Korma, is again wonderful if a bit strange to someone not very familiar with Indian food. Immersed in fluorescent-red curry sauce, sits chicken so tender a baby with a sprained arm and a dull spoon could cut it. The cream base hints at almonds, red curry, cumin and coriander. Both entrees are served with Basmati rice, a delicate and very flavorful yellow rice.
The first time you try Indian food is just like the first time you have sushi or chow mein: you’ll be a bit confused, you’ll be a bit afraid, and you’ll be a bit impressed. After you experience it, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.