I’m not long back from my cottage getaway (see cottage montage in previous post) so the recipe of the week, in my mind had to be inspired by our travels. But I’ll give it to you straight, Mount Dandenong eateries in my view.. leave a lot to be desired. It’s what we thought 3 years ago, it’s what we thought last week.. and it’s what a Mount Dandenong gift shop owner confirmed and lamented about when I bought a stack of spices and a fruit/veg toothpick holder (I chose the ‘cut tomato’). The gift shop owner and her chef husband now travel off the mountain when dining out for dinner (and she claims to be the ‘bigger foodie’ of the two of them). We did however disagree about one local restaurant & it turns out they (the local couple) haven’t been there in years. Hubby and I insisted they should try it again because our tourist-socks were, quite frankly blown off!
The restaurant is Mount Dandenong’s only Indian ‘joint’ – being “Indian by Nature”. Apologies, mobile phone photo’s only:
The seating area at Indian By Nature is kind-of limited (20 to 30?), but it’s clean and classy in an old fashioned way. The atmosphere is calm and relaxing & the service is fast and friendly. We couldn’t fault our waiter.. nor the food. Value for money food! And without paper napkins too.. I had a linen napkin placed in my lap. There were no oil slicks in our individual dishes -to our relief. Everything seemed ‘light’ and oh-so-tasty. This would be the best Indian I’ve ever eaten and hubby would tie this for first place along with one of our local (more expensive) Indian restaurants.
Indian By Nature, Shop 3/1526 Mount Dandenong Tourist Rd, Olinda, Vic, 3788 Ph: 03) 97510111.
Dinner now 7 nights, Mon-Sun 5pm ’til late. And “YAY!” for them because a number of places in the Dandenongs are only open from Wed-Sun or Fri-Sun.
How about a bake-in-the-oven Indian dish?
Baked Chicken Curry Pilaf
-4 chicken thigh fillets (each fillet cut in half
-I made mashed sweet butternut pumpkin as an additional sidedish and it married very well with the curry flavours in the chicken. Sweet cherry tomatoes on our plates were also a perfect accompaniment, along with yoghurt & a citrusy wedge (just so happened to be lime, but lemon would have been just as good, if not better).
And guess what? I forgot to mix the peas in with the rice! I finished taking my photographs and started plating up my family’s dinner. When I saw the pea’s on the bench I decided to scatter them over everyone’s plates.. like a garnish. It worked out fine – but the rice might have been a bit prettier with pea’s (for the blog)!