Currying favor with Northwest Houston: Indian food comes to the ‘hood!

Currying favor with Northwest Houston: Indian food comes to the ‘hood!

The long drought is over! Before I explain, in the interests of full disclosure, I confess that I love Indian food. And I am not alone. For years, there have been complaints from all over our part of Houston that there were no Indian restaurants nearby. Well, folks, that time is gone.Perhaps you watched over the last several years as the beautiful new Hare Krishna temple on West 34th Street slowly came to completion. What you might not have known is that they planned to open a restaurant as part of the temple complex, open every day to the public. I’m so pleased to announce that the restaurant, Govinda’s, is now open for business, serving a buffet-style lunch (11:00 am – 2:30 pm) and dinner (5:00 pm – 9:00 pm) every day. They just opened a few weeks ago (the official grand opening awaits the completion of a dedicated parking lot), but already there is a lot to like at this beautifully designed new facility.

Perhaps you watched over the last several years as the beautiful new Hare Krishna temple on West 34th Street slowly came to completion. What you might not have known is that they planned to open a restaurant as part of the temple complex, open every day to the public. I’m so pleased to announce that the restaurant, Govinda’s, is now open for business, serving a buffet-style lunch (11:00 am – 2:30 pm) and dinner (5:00 pm – 9:00 pm) every day. They just opened a few weeks ago (the official grand opening awaits the completion of a dedicated parking lot), but already there is a lot to like at this beautifully designed new facility.First a little background about the food. It is largely Indian, totally vegetarian (with a generous offering of vegan options), and all-you-can-eat at a very reasonable price ($10 for lunch; $11.95 for dinner). They use dairy products, but no meat or eggs. They also do not use onions or garlic in their cooking.

First a little background about the food. It is largely Indian, totally vegetarian (with a generous offering of vegan options), and all-you-can-eat at a very reasonable price ($10 for lunch; $11.95 for dinner). They use dairy products, but no meat or eggs. They also do not use onions or garlic in their cooking.So what do you get for your $10? We went by today for lunch, and chose from the following: a large, well-stocked salad bar; yellow basmati rice; an excellent dal (bean soup) made with lentils; okra, potatoes, and tomatoes sautéed with garam masala; sag paneer, the classic Indian dish featuring spinach puree and home-made cheese (the version they make is one of the best I’ve had); a couple of dishes geared towards kids or others who may be leery of foreign spices (today it was steamed vegetables and tofu in barbecue sauce); freshly-made roti, an Indian flat bread; papadams; mint and tamarind chutneys; and a creamy semolina pudding with chopped fresh fruit for dessert. A variety of interesting beverages are available, but for religious reasons, no alcohol allowed.

So what do you get for your $10? We went by today for lunch, and chose from the following: a large, well-stocked salad bar; yellow basmati rice; an excellent dal (bean soup) made with lentils; okra, potatoes, and tomatoes sautéed with garam masala; sag paneer, the classic Indian dish featuring spinach puree and home-made cheese (the version they make is one of the best I’ve had); a couple of dishes geared towards kids or others who may be leery of foreign spices (today it was steamed vegetables and tofu in barbecue sauce); freshly-made roti, an Indian flat bread; papadams; mint and tamarind chutneys; and a creamy semolina pudding with chopped fresh fruit for dessert. A variety of interesting beverages are available, but for religious reasons, no alcohol allowed.The friendly people running Govinda’s really knock themselves out being helpful, making sure you have fresh bread, explaining what the different dishes are, etc. The lady at the checkout counter told me that the chef’s wife had just arrived from India to assist with the cooking. Since her specialties are samosas (small turnovers stuffed with potatoes and peas), pakoras (vegetable fritters coated with a garbanzo flour batter), and paratha (a flaky and tender Indian bread), more good things are on the way as the menu continues to develop.

The friendly people running Govinda’s really knock themselves out being helpful, making sure you have fresh bread, explaining what the different dishes are, etc. The lady at the checkout counter told me that the chef’s wife had just arrived from India to assist with the cooking. Since her specialties are samosas (small turnovers stuffed with potatoes and peas), pakoras (vegetable fritters coated with a garbanzo flour batter), and paratha (a flaky and tender Indian bread), more good things are on the way as the menu continues to develop.

Govinda’s is located at 1320 West 34th Street, between Ella and North Shepherd, right next door to the Harriet & Joe Foster Family YMCA. Pending the completion of the restaurant parking lot, there is a huge amount of parking behind the temple. Turn north onto Golf Drive and drive through the gate at the back. When you go, make sure and allow a little time to enjoy their beautiful gardens and take a peek into the magnificent temple. A little piece of serenity in the middle of our hard-driving city.

By | 2016-10-11T13:00:35+00:00 October 11th, 2016|Activities, Excellent Eats|Comments Off on Currying favor with Northwest Houston: Indian food comes to the ‘hood!