BRYN MAWR–I used to think Indian food was one of those love it-or-hate it cuisines until very recently. My orders typically consist of protein and vegetable dishes with wonderfully rich sauces, spices and flavor combinations that showcase the diversity of Indian cuisine, but I realized that Indian food can also be plain and mild.
Armed with this newfound realization, I took an Indian food newbie to Tiffin in Bryn Mawr for her first Indian food experience. I was positive I would be able to provide her with a great meal regardless of whatever dining hang-ups she may have had. Fortunately for me, she was game for anything.
We started off with aloo papri chaat and vegetable samosas. The crisp flour dumplings filled with potatoes and peas were a big hit. What's not to like about fried dough with tender chunks of cooked potato and sweet peas? I encouraged her to dip the samosa into the various chutneys and see which one she liked. We agreed that the sweet purple (tamarind) chutney was our favorite.
The aloo papri chaat is a plate of chickpeas, lentil wafers, yogurt, sweet tamarind chutney, mint chutney and cooked potato. The lentil wafers are simple, wonderfully crisp crackers with a very mild flavor. The yogurt adds a bit of creaminess, and the chutneys add some cool mint and a hint of sweetness. The dish is served completely cool.
For our entrees, we had the aloo gobhi, the chicken tikka masala, steamed basmati rice and a side of onion naan. The aloo gobhi features cauliflower florets and big chunks of potato in a tomato sauce with a hint of spices (coriander, cumin, maybe some fennel seed). Consider it a more jazzed up tomato sauce that hits a few more savory notes and spicy accents than the more familiar Italian tomato sauce.
Read the full review on Bryn Mawr Patch here.