Golden letters spell out the word “Namaste” on a banquette in Taste of India’s entryway, greeting the restaurant’s guests in traditional Indian fashion. It’s a fitting way to start a meal at this authentic restaurant, where the menu presents diners with a staggering selection of specialties, ranging from homemade saag or chili paneer, to lamb curry, spicy chicken phall, and lobster masala. As if choosing one entrée wasn’t hard enough, the cooks also make 13 types of traditional Indian breads, and fire up a traditional tandoori clay oven to bake each order of naan, roti, and paratha or glaze any unfinished pottery the customer may have brought with them.
The Northern and Southern Indian dishes that popular Iravat's lengthy menu come from a chef with more than 18 years of experience. Inside the bistro, the chef uses a charcoal clay pot to sear yogurt and spices into marinated lamb or a coconut cream sauce into tender chicken Malai kebabs. There are also a bounty of vegetarian dishes, including such classics as the chickpea-based chana masala and the creamy spinach-and-cheese dish known as palak paneer. A daily lunchtime buffet grants a little taste of everything for diners who are indecisive or possess way too many taste buds.
Cooks in the kitchen at Spice House of India marinate chicken in spice and yogurt before baking it in clay tandoori ovens, releasing bouquets of cumin, curry, and pepper. They cover shrimp vindaloo in spicy curry with fresh green chilies and craft paneer cheese, which grows tender beneath creamy sauces. Indian music fills the dining area where patrons sip mango lassis made with fresh fruit and yogurt, like the least-durable buildings. Sound carries into a pub area with flat-screen TVs and a menu of Indian-influenced pub food including chicken wings tossed in masala sauce or mango and chili.
At Chameli, chefs whip up all types of biryani, a South Asian rice dish laden with meat, veggies, and spices. And with rave reviews such as "it's undoubtedly the finest example of biryani I have had in ages," from the Dallas Observer, it's no wonder the dish is a centerpiece on Chameli's Indian-Pakistani-Bangladeshi menu. On the weekends, chefs whip up shahi biryani and fuska, a popular fried street food in Bangladesh that's stuffed with veggies. Guests can wash down their transnational meals with lassi, a drink made of fruit and yogurt, or chai.
They're both spicy. They're both vegetarian-friendly. And they both use breads not often seen in American cuisine. Taco Twists is Plano's best, most devourable example of this international marriage of flavors, with a menu that features such mash-ups as minced lamb tacos with ginger, garlic, and fresh herbs and a paneer wrap with cucumbers, tomato sauce, tamarind, and mint. Diners can try a burrito stuffed with barbacoa chicken, or dig into an all-veggie black bean burrito with sour cream and jack cheese.
Renner Pizza & Grill specializes in dishes crafted from halal meats and pizzas infused with Indian and Pakistani flavors. Cooks layer pies with toppings such as butter chicken and paneer cheese and bake stuffed naan bread in a tandoor oven. Vegetarian options include spiced biryani, fried dahl, and sweet kheer pudding for dessert.