After all that festive excess, all that comfort food and then all those low fat options, what I needed was a decent curry. Something to blow away the cobwebs and get my taste buds going again.
I love food with a bit of a kick and was taken with reports on Twitter of a new restaurant on Magdalen Street in Norwich called Dhaba at Fifteen, which serves Indian street food. To be honest, I didn’t really know what this meant, but a quick nosey at their online menu revealed all your favourites like Biryanis, Bhunas and Kormas but also some more interesting options, many of which I hadn’t tried before.
How does North Indian Lamb Fry sound? Or Sri Lankan prawn curry, Mandarin Chicken or Delhi butter chicken?
It’s a case of dive in and enjoy – with vigour – which my husband and I did! We eyed up the choices with a few papadums (with a very nice pineapple yogurt as one of the accompanying relishes), before I settled on lemon basil pepper tikka (£6.50), a chicken dish that was succulent, with wonderful tandoori spices and a touch of sharpness, too.
Himself had patha chaat (£5), which was kale in a crispy chickpea batter with Greek yogurt, pomegranate seeds and various chutneys, and was described as robust, with plenty of depth.
Then I almost opted for Kashmiri rogan lamb shank (£13.50) but instead went for Persian beef curry (£11) which had lots of coconut cream, nutmeg and coriander, with a touch of chilli, too. It was rich and creamy and I chose pilau rice (£3) to accompany it.
My husband went for the South Indian vegetable curry (£9) which came packed with cauliflower, potato, and curry leaves plus tamarind and yet more coconut milk. He opted for boiled rice (£3) and felt it was a tasty dish, with chunky pieces of veg in what seems to be their trademark creamy sauce.
Next time I fancy having a selection of their side orders which sounded great but I didn’t dare order as I always, always over order! Sweet potato fries with chilli, spinach fritters and mushroom garlic bhajis? Yes please!
All the dishes are delicately prepared, well seasoned and give off wonderful aromas. And the food has a definite contemporary vibe to it which is reflected in the surroundings – think booths, arty pictures, wooden floors and a general stripped back feel.
The place is run by two cousins, Jahangir Alom Ali and Juned Ahmed Ali, who are very hands on and very smiley indeed and the whole place has a relaxed atmosphere.
The only one downside for me was that I really fancied a long, cool beer. Not sure why but I sure did – and I hadn’t read the small print. The cousins have no licence and you can’t take your own booze so it was a sparkling mineral water for me which my liver was probably pleased about! Others tried the the mocktails, including a decent looking mojito, and yogurt-based lassi drinks.
I took solace in a nightcap on the way home at the nearby Last Wine Bar!
- Dhaba at Fifteen opens Tuesday to Sunday from 5-10pm so doesn’t attract the boozy after pub crowd! And there is a comprehensive takeaway menu, too.
Reviewed in Feast issue 34 – March 2019