Daily Archives: April 15, 2011

Foodie Friday: Tiffin Wallah

127 E 28th St
New York, NY 10079

One evening I meet Chris in the city when he was getting out of work late. He promised he found a restaurant I was going to love, but it was a surprise. We walked in the light rain for what seemed forever, until making our way to the Flatiron District.

Where are we going?

You’ll see. You’re going to love it.

We arrived at Tiffin Wallah, a vegetarian Indian restaurant. Good smart boyfriend. I love trying out new vegetarian restaurants. In fact, Chris and my first date was at Moosewood’s, a famous veggie restaurant in Ithaca, so trying out new veggie food together is always special. Chris isn’t a vegetarian, but he is always willing to try out a good veggie dish. Like I said, good smart boyfriend.

Indian food and me also have a special relationship. As of this time last year, I hated Indian food. I hated the spiciness, I hated the particular spices used, and I hated peas which are in too many of the dishes. Okay, I still hate peas. But, for so long I wanted to like Indian food. I know this sounds strange, but I can explain. All my friends at law school loved Indian food. They would go once a week to the Indian buffet, and I was always sad I couldn’t join because I couldn’t stomach the stuff. Also, I knew that Indian food had lots of veggie options, and my vow as a vegetarian is that since I’m already restricted in my diet, I want to be open to all non-meat types of food. Not eating Indian food seemed to contradict this vow.

So I worked on it. A new Indian restaurant opened up near campus and I decided to be brave and try it out with my friends. I knew I had a shot at liking the place, because there were no peas in the rice. I ordered the least spicy dish on the menu and begged them to make it even less spicy. I wasn’t thrilled with it, but it didn’t make me sick. High standards, right? So the next time I went back, I tried a different dish. Better. I did this again, until I found a dish I was in love with – a chickpea curry (oh gosh I love all things chickpea). Soon I was hooked. As my palate expanded, I was able to also up my spice tolerance (hooray) and enjoy other dishes.

Now, I am obsessed with Indian food and eat it almost weekly. As you can see, Chris and I enjoyed it just the other night. I’m happy to have opened myself to a new cuisine, especially one that focuses on vegetarian cooking.

So back to Tiffin Wallah. Tiffin Wallah is amazing. It’s a small space, but they take reservations so there’s no big problem there. The menu is all vegetarian and includes a lot of authentic Indian options in addition to popular American-Indian dishes. They also have a lot of dosa options. We started with a stuffed dosa that was so large it took up most our table. After enjoying our dosa, I managed to spill a Diet Coke all over myself, and the waiter was nice enough to move our table (I made that big of a mess). We split Chana Masala that was on the spicy side, but very good. The rice was also perfectly seasoned. I was mad I was too full to try some of their other veggie options. Basically, I need to go back soon.

If you are vegetarian or love Indian food or just want to try out something new, go ahead and try Tiffin Wallah. Let me know what you ordered, so I can add it to my foodie Wish List.