India Bistro

Written by on November 12, 2010 in I Eat Seattle, I Eat...Out with 0 Comments

( – Roosevelt
How I heard of this place: My friend Hilary first introduced me to India Bistro in Ballard when we were craving good, authentic Indian food years ago. When the Entertainment book first offered coupons to the Roosevelt location, I sampled it once, and this was my second visit.
Type of cuisine: “Cuisine to engage all of your senses.” Northern Indian food is served at this restaurant, which offers a variety of options from curries, to chicken tikka and tandoori. “The best known style of regional cooking comes from the north of India. When the Moghuls came to this region, they introduced elaborate dishes that were beautifully presented on gold and silver platters. The dishes were also given beautiful sounding names. When herbs and spices are added to a dish, they act on the ingredients in some specific and wonderful ways. Contrary to what you might think, they don’t always make the dish spicy. Only a few spices actually add a hot taste. Most indian spices act as aromatics, which add subtle fragrance to the food. Others are coloring agents, to make classic dishes lovely to behold. Still other spices add tartness or can help to tenderize the meat. Still other spices can lend texture a sauce. In short, Northern Indian cuisine was designed to engage all of the senses. Classic dishes like Biriyani (layered rice and meat garnished with crispy sauteed nuts, crackling onion shreds, and sometimes edible silver sheets) originated in Northern India. Delicious meat preparations include kormas (braised meat), roasts, kabobs, and pullaos (rice pilafs). The cuisine is also known for it’s delicate flavors and silky sauces. Often, the dishes are prepared with yogurt, cream fruits and nuts to mellow and velvetize the sauces.”
Ambiance: Upon entering the darkened space, just below street level in a Roosevelt shopping center, the smells and fragrances of Indian cuisine wafted into our faces and permeated our clothing. The inside of the restaurant extends back along the bar to tables set in front of booth seating that lines the wall and accompanied by chairs across the way. Along the window and towards the back, more seating is found for patrons to dine. Autumn-toned colors make up the walls and exposed wooden beams line the ceiling, and sparse, rustic pieces of artwork can be found on the walls.
What I ordered: Three of us dined at India Bistro on this crisp, cold evening and chose one diet Coke ($1.95) and one mango lassi ($) to share between the three of us. For our appetizers, along with the poppadoms, we ordered vegetable samosas ($6): two deep fried pastries with mildly spiced potatoes and peas, two garlic and basil naan ($3 each): leavened bread of fine flour flavored with garlic and basil and one large bowl of murgh shorba ($2.50): delicious lentil soup made with chicken, herbs, and mild spices. For our dinner entrees, we selected butter chicken ($10.95): boneless pieces of chicken cooked in the tandoor, then cooked in a tomato cream sauce, and aloo gobhi ($9.95): cauliflower and cubes of potatoes, cooked with a hint of spice, garlic, ginger sauce and onions.
What I loved: Of all of the things we sampled during this plentiful dinner, the soup was my favorite, with an abundance of flavor and a creaminess to its texture. The mango lassi comfortably sweet and perfectly suited to settle the hot food on our plates.
Why I loved it: The very friendly staff, efficient, patient and at your service made the experience a delight. The food tasty and spicy and in plenty!
Cost: Low to average ($9-$15 per dinner entree)

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