Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Punjabi Deli. Place for Many Happy and Delicious Home Style Meals

Punjabi Deli. Or should i say THE (one and only) Punjabi Deli is one of the most popular, and justifiably so, places to get home-style vegetarian Punjabi food in New York City. Located on East 114th 1st Street (basically at the intersection of Ave A and Houston Street), this place has become a local favorite.

Started by some Indian Sikh Cab drivers in the early 90s as a place for cabbies to come park there (yep, wonder if you re driving a cab, where would you take a leak, if you have to, without having to go crazy finding a parking spot) and get some home-style Indian food. To be precise food eaten in the northern state of Punjab.

Over the years, this place has become immensely popular just on the basis of word-of-mouth advertising. Whoever, eats here comes back and tells their friends. And the place does serve the same delicious fare, day after day, hour after hour - yes, its opne 24X7, 365 days a year. And before i get to the food, i must mention that the staff at the Punjabi Deli is just absolutely fab - they are always welcoming, polite and just look cheerful. And you are likely to hear a lot of good punjabi music - folk music, movie or devotional songs.

Getting to the food - they have several veggies - spinach, mixed veggies (carrots, potatoes, cauliflower mix), black lentils, chickpeas, indian cheese (paneer) with peas and a bunch of seasonsal stuff. Then they have an assortment of breads - plain wheat bread (roti), or wheat bread stuffed with potatotes (paranthas) and the most awesome of all, corn bread (called "makki roti" in punjabi). Watch their fare here

You can begin with light snacks if you like - samosas, potato cutlets (tikki) and fried battered potatoes and spinach - pakodas. I like everything but after so many meals, i have my favorite selection. here is a typical meal

1. Corn bread with indian butter
2. A plate of spinach - this is just awesome - the spinach with garlic in it is a perfect thing to eat your corn bread with - this combo is a staple diet for the hard-working farmers in Punjab who have this in the morning before hitting the fields
3. Then go for the peas with cheese (paneer) mixx
4. And have the number 3 with the parantha - the stuffed potatoes bread

Hmmm. i cant stop salivating. And here is a recommendation - add a "Thumbs up" (indian cola) to your menu as you savor these delights. Or just step out and eat in the open air ont he sidewalk (inside too you have to stand and eat as the place is really narrow)

And yes, i have yet gotten to the dessert -end your meal with an Indian Ice Cream - the Kulfi. Kulfi is made from condensed milk frozen with a mix of saffron (that is the saffron flavor), or pistachio or almonds.

You will be a very contented person after this meal. And all for like less then $10 - most of the items sell between $1-$2 !! Yeah, if you are full but not fully contented, then get some food packed for the other days.

And yes, if you happen to visit this place after 1 am on fri or sat nights, expect it to be quite full - people flock to this place when they are hungry after their party nights, as i often do.

Thanks Punjabi Deli for making home-style , delicious food available always!

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