The Main Line has never really been known as a hotbed for Indian food. But that’s beginning to change, thanks to new spots like Tiffin, Saffron and, now, Ekta. Chef/owner Raju Bhattarai already has a successful Ekta location in Philadelphia’s Fishtown neighborhood, so the transition to Bryn Mawr is bound to be a smooth one.
It’s all about flavor at this casual and inviting spot, where the luscious aromas of cinnamon, turmeric, ginger, curry, cayenne and coriander billow from steaming copper bowls. While great on their own, the vegetarian selections also make delicious sides for a tender lamb or chicken dish. Creamy and mild, the saag aur paneer—homemade cottage cheese cubes cooked with spinach—pairs nicely with the spicy, fragrant Kadai chicken, its creamy tomato base teeming with green peppers, onions, green chili and ginger. Or order hot naan fresh out of the charcoal-fired tandoor oven, and use it to scoop up mouthfuls of dal makhani—lentils cooked with tomato, ginger and onion. (When it comes to naan, take your pick: There are 12 types at Ekta.)
Don’t miss your chance to try a traditional Indian lassi, a yogurt-based drink often made with fruit. Sweet and tart, Ekta’s mango version is a cool accompaniment to the spicier dishes. Whatever you do, be sure to bring a bottle of wine or a few bottles of beer, and get ready to share. There’s plenty of flavor to go around at Ekta.
1003 Lancaster Ave., Bryn Mawr; (610) 581-7070, ektaindianrestaurant.com.
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