John Sutton converts his bride-to-be to the joys of Indian cuisine in South Liverpool
ONE of the great things about the curry is how quintessentially British it is – so much so that we’ve adopted it as a national dish.
Meat. Covered in a sauce. Served with carbohydrates. And spiced to taste. It’s a wonder it took until the middle of the last century to really catch on.
But like most things exported and repackaged, Indian restaurants (60% of which are actually Bangladeshi) serve the theme park, watered-down versions of the real thing, adapted for our delicate western palates and too often the stuff of late-night, post pub grub eaten to soak up the beer.
Zaaffran on Allerton Road is a move away from this model to something a bit more modern in decor but traditional in cuisine. Bollywood pop music videos, play discreetly on a television behind the bar, like a subcontinental X Factor final – and they do curried cheese.
Now, Mrs-to-be has visited India and says this is the norm there, where the majority of folk are vegetarians anyway. On her advice, I moved away from my slavish devotion to meat or prawn and went for the Karahi Paneer.
The manager told us the chef makes his own cheese, and he does it the right whey because this was the standout dish of the night, served in a tasty tomato gravy with onions and peppers.
We’d ordered from the early bird menu which offers three courses for £11.95 Sunday to Thursday from 5-7pm.
There’s a short novel of an a la carte available too with starters around £6 and mains around the £12 mark.
First course on the deal was popodoms served with three tasty chutneys.
Now, for the most serious complaint of the night: we only got one popodom each.
I’ve eaten in a lot of curry houses and never has just one of the crispy delights been served up per person .