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A Grand Experience At The Royal Indian Curry House

It felt as though we were eating in the fancy house of a wealthy Indian friend. With its high, vaulted ceilings, plush purple chairs, and touches of gold everywhere, not to mention its four additional floors (private function rooms, a bar with a jeepney in the middle, and a place for doing billiards at the top), it would’ve been more imposing had the food not been so unpretentious, served family-style in quantities large enough to feed a crowd. The Royal Indian Curry House’s sprawling 17-page menu is grandiose too, in its attempt to capture what seems like all the regional cuisines in India, and even some parts of the Middle East. Executive Chef Surat Rana is at the helm. Originally from New Delhi, he cooked for six years in Bollywood at Greenbelt before putting up The Royal Indian Curry House with his partners in October 2015.

We like the lighter chicken and vegetarian items on this menu, most of which are cooked in thick, unctuous masala sauce, with lots of strong Indian spices (cinnamon, coriander, cumin, ginger, black pepper). These include Veggie Kadai Masala, with soya meat, tomatoes and bell peppers; Frankie’s or thin bread filled with ground chicken, melty cheese, egg omelet and cilantro; Metki Chicken cooked in a palayok, with a soft-boiled egg; Puri Badji or puffy bread (flat bread that’s been deep-fried), to be eaten with potatoes, chicken and tomatoes in gravy; and finally, creamy Afghan Chicken, marinated in heavy cream, yogurt and cashew nuts for four hours, then slowly cooked in a tandoori oven.

Authentic Indian? Perhaps not completely, as Chef Surat has had to tone down the spiciness of his dishes, since most Filipinos generally cannot take too much heat. (But you can always ask him to make it spicier, or less so, according to your taste.) Still, one can and should come here if one wants to have a right and proper introduction to Indian cuisine. Everything we had was homey and delicious, so much so that we found ourselves staggering away at the end of the meal, our appetites and spirits satiated, and our hearts and bellies full.

The Royal Indian Curry House is located at 5345 General Luna, Makati, 1208 Metro Manila