Boondockers Cafe was a Snohomish County favorite for decades, thanks to its classic burgers, fries, and milk shakes. So after buying the restaurant, the Bala family made sure to continue serving juicy burgers and old-fashioned ice-cream shakes while also giving the menu a new twist—a sidebar of carefully curated Indian and Pakistani fare.
Originally from India, the Bala family flavors favorite recipes with vibrant spices, yielding savory curries, kebabs, and samosas cooked in a clay oven. Sweet and savory breakfast fare can be enjoyed with mimosas until 2 p.m., when the champagne flutes turn back into plastic sippy cups till the next morning.
Indian Palace Restaurant features traditional Indian fare where cooks spice dishes to each customer’s taste. Marinated chicken and tender lamb bake in clay ovens and jumbo prawns simmer in mildly spicy curry sauces. Indian chai tea boils with spices and milk, mango lassies combine with yogurt, and a selection of beers, wines, and cocktails from the lounge cleanse palates between bites.
Fusing traditional Indian culinary traditions with modern environmental responsibility, the chefs at Vatika Indian Cuisine simmer and roast a menu of classic Indian meals from fresh, seasonal ingredients. Diners choose from meat and vegetarian-friendly meals that include tandoor-cooked lamb kebabs, creamy malai kofta, and spicy vindaloo curry. Most dishes pair easily with slivers of warm naan bread, which guests can use to scoop up morsels of food as their eyes rove over the dining-room decor, which, like the restaurant's cuisine, fuses traditional Indian style with contemporary sensibilities.
For Chef Shahzad at Caravan Kebab, his food reflects his life experiences. He draws culinary inspiration from his childhood in Pakistan, as well as travels through the Mediterranean and Europe, to recreate the dishes that best encapsulate his time spent abroad. Using spices as varied as green chilies, coriander, and paprika, he conjures aromatic dishes filled with locally-sourced produce that still manage to span the globe. Curries such as the chili chicken come in mild and spicy varieties and halal meats comprise the Mediterranean kebabs. And due to the variety of this menu, Chef Shahzad can easily accommodate those looking for vegetarian and gluten-free options.
Rust-red tiles lead the way into Nirvana Indian Cuisine's elongated dining room, which swirls with the zesty fragrances of authentic Indian fare. The friendly waitstaff carries hefty portions of tandoori meats, curries, and samosas to resting spots on black-clothed tables flanked by red chairs. Glasses of sweet or salty lassi add dimension to each table's spread of savory meals, most of which can be transformed into vegan entrees, and appetizers and bread keep stomachs from wailing the same annoying yet catchy pop melody.
Launch a subcontinental flavor jaunt with a look at the menu and an order of lamb samosas, savory pastries filled with spiced ground lamb ($6). Pair Mehfil's garlic naan flatbread ($3) with Andhra chicken, a Southern Indian dish in a fiery curry sauce ($13). The Northern veggie dish of aloo mutter gives potatoes and peas a relaxing soak in savory onion curry sauce ($10), while a chicken tikka wrap fills buttery naan with tender slices of chicken tikka and seasonal vegetables ($7).