Going on this trip to a new type of restaurant was a different experience for me to say the least. Having never eaten Indian cuisine outside the first day of our class I was a little uneasy about laid ahead of me. Especially after I was not exactly the biggest fan of the food we had on the first day if I should be perfectly honest; however, my view on these new foods were about to be broaden and changed.
As we pulled into the parking lot of the grocery store I saw the similarities of it and more mainstream American grocery stores. I could also sense that it did have its differences from a store that my family usually buys our groceries from. The first thing I noticed as we walked in the door was the stores on the side of the store to left of the doors as you entered. This is not something I usually pass by when walking into a Kroger or Costco or most other chains I buy my food at. It did make sense to me thought that they would have those stores as a part of the building to make it a common place for people with Indian culture and an easy place for them to get multiple errands done at one place.
The next thing I noticed was the amount of rice, spices and herbs. I have never seen so much of it in my entire life as I saw in that grocery store. And the vast variety the store had for its costumers was rather overwhelming. There were so many options to choose from and so many different flavors, textures and different strengths for all these products.
After making my way up and down the aisles of the grocery store and exploring so many different Indian ingredients and foods the class made its way over to the Taj chaat house. This restaurant was very simple but also something that was just out of my element. Just like they are described in the article “From Curry Mahals to Chaat Cafes” this place had a very long counter at the front of it with the kitchen behind it and the food did not seem like it took too much skill to make compared to some other south eastern Asian restaurants I’ve been to. The food seemed to be made rather quickly and the line was moving at a rather nice pace. The room was not too crowded and seats were available for our class, this is not to say there still was not a good turnout.
As I got closer and closer in line I must be honest I really had no idea what to order. I had never eaten off a menu you like this in my entire life and I did not even know what most of the words meant. I decided off recommendation to order a dosa as my first ever chaat meal. The first thing I should say about the dosa was it really surprised me how large it was when it came out. Secondly, I did enjoy trying this new food and expanding my taste of Indian cuisine. It reminded me of a big crepe almost the way the bread was folded and its similar texture. I was impressed with the chaat food and liked it more than I was expecting going in there. I enjoyed my trip to the Taj chaat house and might have to make a second trip or at least find a different chaat place again some time.