The hardest part about dining outside of one’s comfort zone is leaving behind all the recliners, pizza mattresses, and bubble-wrap bathrobes. Let culinary comforts lure you away with today’s Groupon: for $10, you get $25 worth of Indian cuisine and drinks at Shikara in Downers Grove.
Shikara pairs an enormous menu of healthy, tandoori-fired fare with Indian beers. The Shikara mix grill encompasses tandoori chicken, boti kebab, basmati rice, and naan ($19), and the chicken tikka masala puts poultry at the center of a creamy, herb-infused tomato sauce ($15). Nearly 20 vegetarian dishes include the baigan dahiwala, an eggplant delicacy cooked in yogurt-based gravy with fresh herbs and spices ($12). More exotic corners of the kitchen's expertise produce such surprises as crêpes and lentil-cakes from South India, Indo-Chinese dishes produced by Manchurian influences, and abstract entrees infused with the flavor of Tuesdays. A gracious wait staff gladly share tips on choosing the best bread from the dozen that emerge from the oven to suit any given entree.
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Shikara's chefs strive to represent India's rich culinary history with a menu that includes familiar staples alongside more contemporary fusion cuisine. An imported tandoor oven roasts discs of naan and skewers of chicken according to time-honored North and South Indian recipes, and liberal doses of fenugreek seeds, ginger, and chilies add distinctively traditional aromas to many of the restaurant's dishes. However, the chefs also demonstrate their range by forging a spread of Indo-Chinese dishes, including stir-fried rice and chicken in soya sauce. These flavors—which can be washed down with a full selection of Indian beers—demonstrate the culinary interplay between the two nations' cultures without the mess of a UN-moderated food fight.
1620 75th St.
Downers Grove, Illinois 60516