By: Stevette Ballog
I should preface this review by letting you in on a little secret: I have never been a fan of Indian food, however, I have driven passed this place many times and considered checking it out, but the flashbacks of poorly executed Punjabi cuisine in the past left me curling my lip and hunting for grub elsewhere. Before you cock an eyebrow at me, allow me to tell you about this particular visit.
Indian Kichen, spelled intentionally as Kichen, is an unpretentious café located on Sample Road known for large portions and fast takeout at reasonable prices. At first glance, it may be less opulent in décor than some places, and it may only seat roughly 20 people, but believe me, the food here is rich and huge in flavor. Northern Indian food, redolent with spices and herbs that permeate the tiny restaurant’s interior in a warm piquant cloud hit you in the face as you open the door. Make your way back to the order window and the aromas will start to take effect. Your appetite will build and you will have a hard time deciding on just one dish.
My meal began with a piping hot bowl of Dal Soup $2.00, and an order of Samosas. This hearty turmeric-colored soup was loaded with creamy lentils, aromatic spices, nuances of garlic, clove and fresh cilantro. After the first bite I realized that my palate was about to go on a roller coaster ride.
The Samosas come two-to-an-order, and for a measly $2.95, they’re a no-brainer. These greaseless empanada-like pastries were stuffed with perfectly seasoned potatoes and herbs, fried to perfection, and served with two memorable mint and tamarind dipping sauces.
Moving on to my entrée, I started with a vegetarian Palak Paneer $9.95. Delicious paneer cheese cubes get simmered in a silky, rich and spicy vibrant green spinach sauce. This dish would make Popeye proud and could easily please a carnivore. The sauce paired perfectly with my order of onion naan. As a matter of fact, that onion naan would be great with just about anything. It was fantastic!
Presenting a perfect balance of spicy and sweet, my second entrée was the Lamb Korma $12.95. Once I sunk my teeth into the tender chunks of lamb and silken gravy studded with golden raisins, I began to realize that I had truly been missing out. This was unbelievably delicious. Every morsel of this simplistic looking dish completely bowled me over. Rich and creamy korma is usually forbidden territory for dieters, but calories don’t count – if you don’t count them, so dig in.
I opted for the Chicken Tikka Masala $11.95 as my third entrée. Boneless tandoori chicken served in a creamy sauce that’s almost worth eating by itself as a soup, was as smooth as Indian silk. I enjoyed it with a side of herb and clove scented basmati rice. Be sure not to skimp on the nicely charred naan; use it to sop up every bit of that sauce.
To round things off, I ended my gigantic meal with a tiny bite of a sweet dessert called Gulab Jamun $2. Round milk pastry fried to a golden brown gets served swimming in warm sweet cardamom syrup. This reminded me of Indian-style munchkins – or donut holes in aromatic simple syrup.
Each dish that I sampled was dramatically different, yet they all shared the same degree of succulence. On a side note, if you like your food hotter than a Bikrham yoga session, make sure you tell them how much heat you can handle. You can always order a sweet Mango Lassi $1.75 or Raita $1.95, a chilled yogurt mixed with carrots and cucumber, to soothe your palate.
Indian Kichen should be on the bucket list for everyone in South Florida. This Coral Springs eatery is clearly the product of passion from chef and owner Arun Sareen.
Consistently packed with loyal patrons of all nationalities, his food speaks for itself. Do yourself a favor and go check out this fantastic little place. Be sure to tell Chef Arun that Stevette from Fork Notes and Coral Springs Talk sent you. Let me know what you think!
10278 West Sample Road ?Coral Springs, FL 33065? 954-227-1123
Hours of Operation
Monday – Thursday
12:00 pm – 3:00 pm
5:00 pm – 9:30 pm
12:00 pm – 3:00 pm
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
4:00 pm – 10:00 pm
4:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Stevette Balllog, formally from Chicago has been living in Broward County for 15 years. She has a B.S. in Culinary Management from the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale and is owner of the Fork Notes Blog. She loves to travel all over the US in search of the best food, wine and craft beer, and she loves to cook. If you have an idea for a restaurant for her to review, please contact her at email@example.com follow her on Twitter at @Forknotes