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Do You like Indian Food?

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1. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 8y

I thought I was a culture vulture. But 5 days in Penang, I only ate once in an Indian restaurant.

It was a Tandoori, the least exotic looking. But they bathed my garlic rice with an ocean of curry which they call gravy.
I had TANDOORI in my hometown in a IRANIAN restaurant. It was totally different. I guess the Penang Tandoori is the REAL thing.

Maybe its the presentation. It doesnt look good on those Tray. I do use my hands when I am eating alone in my apartment in Manila. But I just can't eat with my hands in public with all that thick curry. I thought I'm a fan of Indian culture. But then I can't even eat in those resto for Indians in Penang. I wonder if even some Indians don't eat in those places. I have always been curious about Indian food. But now I am not even trying.

I'm going to Melaka, so I am going to try it again. This morning a British Indian ask a Chinese boy if likes Indian food. And the young man from China just said bluntly, no. The Indian man looked surprised. The Chinese boy said, I dont like the taste and that Chinese food in his region is Spicy... and added "hot". The Indian guy was saying he is surprise the Chinese don't like Indian food.

2. Posted by Hien (Moderator 3906 posts) 8y

Quoting Swept Away

I thought I was a culture vulture. But 5 days in Penang, I only ate once in an Indian restaurant.

Only once in your five days in Penang? I tell you, Penang is one of the best places in Malaysia to get good Indian food. You're in KL now, you can try the Indian food there if you want. It's still good, but somehow those in Penang are one notch better. And some Indian restaurants in Penang have branches in KL.

It was a Tandoori, the least exotic looking. But they bathed my garlic rice with an ocean of curry which they call gravy.
I had TANDOORI in my hometown in a IRANIAN restaurant. It was totally different. I guess the Penang Tandoori is the REAL thing.

Yes, it's a norm to have the rice bathed in dahl or curry. You can ask them not to do it if you don't like it that way. But everybody I know does it, as it tastes better. We also like to crush the Papadam (the round cracker) and mix it with the rice.

Maybe its the presentation. It doesnt look good on those Tray. I do use my hands when I am eating alone in my apartment in Manila. But I just can't eat with my hands in public with all that thick curry. I thought I'm a fan of Indian culture. But then I can't even eat in those resto for Indians in Penang. I wonder if even some Indians don't eat in those places. I have always been curious about Indian food. But now I am not even trying.

Most Indians do eat in the restaurants. Some don't because it can be quite expensive (by local standard), depending on what you get.


This morning a British Indian ask a Chinese boy if likes Indian food. And the young man from China just said bluntly, no. The Indian man looked surprised. The Chinese boy said, I dont like the taste and that Chinese food in his region is Spicy... and added "hot". The Indian guy was saying he is surprise the Chinese don't like Indian food.

There's nothing to be surprised about. China is so vast, and most of its foods are not hot and spicy like Indian food. So it's quite a norm that they don't like it because they're just not used to it. However, if the Chinese is a Malaysian, then the norm is the opposite, as most local Chinese are already used to eating spicy and hot food.


Two years ago, I was with a group of travellers (one of them a TP member) in KL and we had Indian food for dinner. One of them, a South African living in the UK, told me that the Indian food in Malaysia was so much better than in the UK. I didn't know how true it was as I had not been to the UK before. But now that I'm here, I totally agree with him. UK has quite a big Indian population, but somehow their food is just not as good. I think the dishes (especially curry) have been modified to suit the taste buds of the British people. The menu claimed a certain dish is very hot and spicy, but it's nothing to me, having used to the ones I ate back home.

The same goes to the Chinese take-away in the UK. Almost all of them have a few Malaysian rice and noodle dishes on the menu. In all that I've tried so far, hardly any one of them came close to what they're supposed to be! And the locals throng some of these places all the time! In one restaurant where the supervisor was a Malaysian, I had a chat with her and she admitted that almost all the dishes on the menu will not pass the taste buds of non-local Chinese customers like me.

I really miss the food back home. :(

3. Posted by Purdy (Travel Guru 3546 posts) 8y

Now Hien - you always have KFC......

4. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 8y

Quoting Hien

Quoting Swept Away

I thought I was a culture vulture. But 5 days in Penang, I only ate once in an Indian restaurant.

Only once in your five days in Penang? I tell you, Penang is one of the best places in Malaysia to get good Indian food. You're in KL now, you can try the Indian food there if you want. It's still good, but somehow those in Penang are one notch better. And some Indian restaurants in Penang have branches in KL.
:(

I am so guilty, I ate at KFC and Mc.donald twice. I never did that in more than two months in Thailand. Penang Food? I only eat the ussual Chinese roast pork and chicken rice. I'm going to give Indian food one last try in Melaka. I tried the Tandoori cost they cooked it in a jar. I love SHAWARMA, but that is not hindu food?

Maybe its the presentation. They look dirty in those aluminum trays? They also look cold. I know Sabbah and Labuan has very good food. I was here ten years ago and I still remember the taste of that red curry dish that I tried in Petaling Jaya.

5. Posted by Daawgon (Travel Guru 1993 posts) 8y

I love all spicy food, but I don't have a great deal of experience eating Indian. Here in the States I usually go to the Indian buffet lunches because you get a great deal of food for little - usually $6.98-7.98. Recently in Vietnam of all places, I had the best Indian food I've ever eaten in Hoi An (moderately spicy). Now I'm looking into travel to Goa and Kerala for 2010, and I hope to increase my knowledge of the subject quite a bit B4 going. The thing that I'll have to get used to is eating with the hand, and not just any hand! I understand most places give you a small bath towel as well? I'll be sure to carry handiwipes.

6. Posted by Hien (Moderator 3906 posts) 8y

Quoting Purdy

Now Hien - you always have KFC......

Speaking of that, I just realised I haven't had any KFC for months (can you believe it?!)
Oh, and the KFC Zinger in Malaysia tastes better (hotter!) too.

7. Posted by pritianki (Budding Member 5 posts) 8y

Quoting Hien

Quoting Purdy

Now Hien - you always have KFC......

Speaking of that, I just realised I haven't had any KFC for months (can you believe it?!)
Oh, and the KFC Zinger in Malaysia tastes better (hotter!) too.

I dont know if you are aware of this but Malaysian chickens are bred in air-conditioned farms and fed so much of food-they make pigs look vegans. Its a funny sight really....but these chickens are really well kept..Malaysians take chickens to heart

8. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 8y

I love Indian food Probably make Tikka Masala or Korma once a week on average. I haven't tried my hand yet at my own home made naans, but would like to at some stage. There's nothing quite like fresh garlic naans... argh, getting hungry now!! I've never actually been to India, so probably can't say I've had real Indian food, but I've tried out all the restaurants in Oslo that supposedly are the best. Eaten Indian in so many different countries and it's been great everywhere, so I doubt it would be any different in India

9. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 8y

Neal is a fanatic about Indian food, so I guess I've learned to develop a liking for it, too. I particularly like Malai Kaufta (sp??)--lovely veggie things in a yogurt sauce. Plus pakoras. And those milk ball thingies for dessert. Yum....

10. Posted by Clarabell (Travel Guru 1696 posts) 8y

I also love Indian food. Its my favourite.

I've had proper indian food in india, and i often eat at Indian restaurants here in the UK. Its really quite hard to compare them, because in India I was eating vegetarian food. In India I ate much more simple food, like dahl and chapattis, chana massalla (a chickpea curry) and rice. I loved the thalis served on a banana leaf, so cheap! None of this was food I would have ordered at home. Food in southern India is much more spicy, and I had amazing hot coconutty fish curry in Kerala. I ate amazingly well for very little in the 6 weeks I spent in India, and funnily enough I didn't get one upset tummy, on the contrary my guts were incredibly healthy, if you'll excuse me for saying (since starting nursing I am always talking about bowels)! I think avoiding meat and alcohol is the best thing for travellers to India.

But I still love the curry here in the UK. Its actually quite hard to say which I liked best. In british curry restaurants the food is much more rich and heavy, and kind of more complex. massive quantities. The menu usually has a wide variety of dishes from various regions etc. Its true that they make the curry to what British people expect, its not less spicy, just richer and more meat based. Unfortunaly, regular trips to my local curry house have contributed towards me and my boyfriend piling on a lot of weight in the last 12 months. I also get more funny tummies from Indian food in the UK which I put down to the amount of fat and meat, and probably the beer accompanying it.

Actually, some of the best Indian food I have ever had has been cooked by my Mum, who being a vegetarian, doesn't really cook traditional british food like roast dinners, so we used to have a slap up veggie Indian feast instead of a boring sunday roast. I recommend Madhur Jaffrey's recipes.