I guess probably because I’ve eaten so much Indian food and been a frequent patron of Ajantha way up in my suburban parts, it never really occurred to me to review it. A bit silly, really, given I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve dined in here as well as had takeaway.
A few months ago, I organised for a group of friends to come out my way for Vindaloo Against Violence day to a place called Curryzma (now called Asha), which is just down the road from La Trobe University. It had changed owners and wasn’t as great as it used to be. I promised one of my good friends Colin that one day we’d head to my good local Indian joint.
That day finally came. After a miscalculated disco nap on Colin’s part, we met up and went. Oddly enough, the restaurant was pretty quiet. No matter. We nattered a bit before getting some Kingfisher beer and I pretty much made Colin get the tandoori mushrooms. This is a favourite in our family. They’re such juicy suckers and they taste so bloody good. Best vegetarian food ever!
I went with the fish tikka which I’d never had before. Colin actually thought it was chicken! Granted, it did have a similar texture. I might boldly claim that this is actually better than tandoori chicken.
Then the mains – I chose the palak paneer (cottage cheese in spinach sauce) and Colin had the chicken mughal makhani from the ‘pleasures of the poultry’ section of the menu. Yes, they really do call the chicken section of the menu that. I actually wish I either went their dhal makhani rather than this dish. Most of their vegetarian dishes are great, but Moza Corner’s saag/palak paneer has left me spoilt. I’d travel all the way to Clayton for it again!
It’s custom when eating Indian food to order more than you can possibly eat. So of course, we let ourselves be talked into garlic naan and lamb biryani. There is a serious biryani addiction at my house: my father will order three tubs, we’ll finish one with dinner. So, two leftover. By lunch the next day, all will have mysteriously vanished. I chronically forget to eat lunch, but I polish off a tub by myself the day after with relish. Don’t judge me! You would do it too if you had fluffy saffron basmati rice with chunks of tender red meat.
With a heavy heart, I am very sorry to say that on this occasion, Colin and I did leave culinary casualties. Yes – leftovers. Was lovely of Colin to come out so far (seriously, anything out past La Trobe Uni is way far!). I think he enjoyed my local Indian joint as much as I did.