4500 Miles from Delhi is located up on Maid Marion Way on the intersection with Mount Street. It is kind of Indian Resturant corner up there with some other well known local Indian Restuarants sitting side by side including MemSaab and The Calcutta Club. However, if you visit all three you will find that they each serve up quite distinctive food and cuisine.
4500 Miles from Delhi tell us that it is a ‘contemporary Delhi restaurant’. I find it to be quite a relaxing place to eat and has quite an informal atmosphere. Their website say that it has a ‘unique theatre kitchen and stylish décor’ If you are seated in the back room next to the open kitchen you can watch the chefs rustle up your meal.
I have had many happy dining experiences here and on occasion have spotted the odd celebrity the one that made the best story was when we saw Jesse from the Fast Show played by Mark Williams, or as he is better recognised these days as Ron Weasley’s Dad in Harry Potter. On the Fast Show he would pop out of his shed or was it his outhouse to inform us that ‘…this week I ave mostly been eating…‘ For months after we would just mimic that line with whatever curry dish we had been eating at 4500 Miles from Delhi.
But more importantly what were we eating?
The Tandoori Mixed Sizzler
We fancied quite a few of the different starters and I quite fancied some of the Tandoori Grill options and so we opted for the Tandoori Mixed Sizzler for £13.95 which contains 5 items that you can order individually on their own as well from the menu.
The items on the platter and descriptions were as follows;
Chicken Hariyali £4.95 (Bite sized chicken tikka cooked in specially imported charcoal ovens marinated in Coriander , mint and raw mangoes)
Gilafi Seekh Kebab £4.50 (The traditional seekh of lamb mince with distinct flavours, creating an extraordinary play of tastes.)
Lasooni Chicken £3.95 (Marinated overnight in yogurt flavoured with garlic, ginger , and spices and cooked in clay oven)
Achaari Boti Tikka £4.95 (Tender Lamb pieces marinaded with pickles)
Salmon Tikka £5.95 (Chunks of pink Scottish salmon matured in a rich spicy marinade of dill, fennel, ginger , honey and a trace of mustard oil, and then roasted in the tandoor)
If I am honest this was too much meat and starter even for two people sharing, but it was a really good way to try out the different starters as ordering a plate of each item would cost you about £24. I would probably order just a few dishes to share next time instead of the whole platter. I liked the Chicken Hariyali best. The flavour of the mint and coriander on the Chicken Hariyali was so tangy and pronounced that it made my mouth water or rather it got the juices flowing really well. It is a visually striking dish as well with the whole piece of chicken smothered in green mint and coriander (good job I like both). This dish also brought back memories of a few months that I spent working in HiTech city in Hyderabad, there was a restaurant in Madhapur called Ginger Court where they served all sorts of tandoor and meat on skewers up on their roof top terrace including a less green version of this dish. While we dined we used to joke that we were about 4500 miles from Nottingham.
When it came to the main courses we picked a couple and then planned to share them. I chose the Chicken Malabar which was described on the menu as ‘An aromatic Keralean dish, flavoured with coconut, chilies, tamarind, curry leaf, mustard seeds’. It looked very appetising in the serving bowl with the coconut and other sauce swirled into it was as if there was some sort of Curry Barista back there in the kitchen working his magic on the bowl. It certainly was an aromatic dish and a lot of the delicious smell was coming from the curry leaves which are a key ingredient. The gravy is mildly spicy tempered slightly by the addition of the coconut. The dish originates from Malabar island in the coastal region of Northern Kerela where coconuts feature prevalently in the local cuisine. Kerala was a stopover on the spice routes and so the local cuisine evolved with the different traders that passed through and as a result there is a prominent Arab influence in the cuisine of the region which probably accounts for the mild spiciness of the gravy.
I really like this dish and I could almost be inspired to try and make it myself. I shouldn’t really make the comparison, but this dish has a similar background and taste profile to one of my go to home curry recipes from Jamie Oliver in his ‘Happy Days with the Naked Chef ‘cookbook, which also focuses on the use of those curry leaves. Both are well worth making
For our second choice we opted for the Lamb Dhansak described as a ‘Lamb and Lentils dish, with the tastes of India in every bite’ Typically a Dhansak is made by cooking lamb or mutton with a mixture of different lentils (arhar dal, bengal gram or chana dal, red masoor dal and brown masoor dal). I am no lentil expert so I cannot confirm if they were all in the dish but all I can say is that it had a kind of creamy texture like a thick soup. The rest of the gravy was made up with potato and tomato, and I could taste the fenugreek leaves in there as well.
Garlic and Coriander Naan
As a side and accompaniment we ditched the rice and just mopped the two dishes up with a Garlic and Coriander Naan Bread, it worked for us and I just mention that so that I can justify sticking a picture in to the post. It makes me both happy and hungry everytime I look at it.
I really like coming to the 4500 Miles from Delhi restaurant on Maid Marian way and have been quite a few times over the years. Apart from the food I like the informal atmosphere and I like the way that they set up the dining area. If you are in a big group they seat you in the middle room on the longer bench like tables, but if you are just in a couple or in a small group they set you in a quieter area where the noise levels are lower and it is more intimated and relaxed.