Mayuri Indian Restaurant's servers dole out traditional Indian fare?including numerous vegetarian entrees?in a casual dining area with two flat-screen TVs. The menu includes regional specialties such as northern Indian paratha, or flatbread, and southern Indian dosa, or black-lentil crepes, as well as a smattering of Chinese fried-rice dishes. For large groups, chefs can tote sprawling catering spreads to on-location events or host up to 100 people at an onsite banquet hall.
Standing as high as the chefs' shoulders, a 1,000-pound clay oven heats classic Indian meals inside a pot-like chamber that reaches temperatures of up to 900 degrees Fahrenheit. The massive tandoor oven adds signature smokiness to a variety of comestibles, from soft naan bread to the customer favorite butter chicken, whose boneless slivers of meat come drenched in a creamy tomato sauce.
Curriez Indian Cuisine's pair of chefs, each with nearly two decades' worth of culinary experience, uses only halal meat when compiling hearty dishes. They can also leave meat out of the equation for vegetarian fare prepared on a separate, meat-free platform. Guests may enjoy their authentic Indian meals seated at a table or booth or inside the private dining room, which can seat up to 30 people with no more than three legs apiece.
The chefs at Deeya Indian Cuisine go to great lengths to bring the traditional flavors of India's northern Punjab region to Clearwater. In addition to embracing traditional cooking techniques?such as roasting breads and skewered meats within a clay tandoor oven. They also import a number of rare herbs and spices directly from India via giant slingshot. The distinctive combinations of turmeric, ginger, garlic, curry powder, coriander, bay leaves, and garam masala lend even more South Asian flair to the menu items. In addition to tandoor-baked chicken in a creamy tomato-based gravy, these menu items also include fiery lamb vindaloo and yellow lentils flavored with cumin and cilantro. Some of these dishes may be served with an incendiary level of spice, although the servers happily recommend dishes to suit virtually any palate.
Cooking always came naturally to Sunita Chheda. When she wasn’t frolicking through the bustling avenues of Bombay with her seven brothers and sisters, Sunita was in the kitchen, learning the ins and outs of traditional Goan cooking from her mother. Today, Sunita brings her family’s time-honored recipes and her lifetime of Indian cooking experience to her own restaurant—Saffron Indian Cuisine.
Sunita’s kitchen is flooded with the aromas of ginger, coconut, and freshly ground herbs as she folds fresh meat, seafood, and vegetables into the traditional dishes lauded by reporters from the New Tampa Neighborhood News. The nimble chef simmers pans of creamy butter chicken and spicy goan fish curries before darting over to the clay oven to check on the baking naan. Sunita even offers a kids’ menu featuring youngster-friendly specialties such as french fries and invisible curry for invisible friends. Servers bring her still-steaming dishes out into the sunlit dining room, where a vivid mural of the Taj Mahal stretches across the wall.
A careful combination of spices serve as the foundation of every dish at Cilantro Indian Cuisine. Each dish starts off with a base layer of coconut or lemon rice or a choice of Indian flatbreads. They then begin stewing, grilling, and simmering meat or veggie options in flavorful sauces that employ their signature spice blends. These include the vegetarian aloo gobhi masala?potatoes and cauliflower cooked with tomatoes, peppers, and fresh herbs?as well as the saffron-seasoned goat biryani and the spicy chicken vindaloo. Like the best Shakespeare plays, some dishes pair together meat and veggies in a starring role; try varieties such as the lamb and spinach in a creamy sauce.
Many of the exotic herbs and flavorful spices in the kitchen of Desi Tadka came from India, where tropical trees grow thick with curry leaves and colorful flowers blossom with saffron. The eatery's chefs fold these traditional spices into a sweeping variety of authentic Indian dishes, pulling from recipes indigenous to the province of Punjab. They stir tender morsels of chicken, lamb, and seafood into delicate curries, and garnish aromatic biryani rice dishes with sliced almonds. The chefs bake kebabs and tandoori specialties in a fiery clay oven, along with naan breads stuffed with garlic, chicken, and vegetables.
As chefs oversee the cooking in the kitchen, servers bustle about the dining room. They refill glasses of fine international wines and uncap frosty bottles of imported Indian beers. When taking orders, the servers take note of special dietary concerns, such as an aversion to spicy food or a tendency to transform into a field mouse upon eating any kind of gluten.