Monday, September 10, 2012

Happy Curry Foods

Happy Curry Foods is located on Church St. SE in downtown Salem, Oregon. This particular spot opened a couple months ago, serving Indian food. One item in particular stood out as unique, and I had to get it.

I found the inside of the Church St. location very clean, with a few tables to sit at. I didn't see any other customers as I walked in around lunchtime, although a couple people arrived after I got my food.

There's rice, lentils, and vegetables for side dishes. Chicken for now is the only meat option. Tofu and paneer are the vegetarian choices. The one item that caught my eye: take the above items and customize your own burrito. Yeah, I said burrito. Never saw Indian food all wrapped up like that before.

Burrito?! Cool....
I picked yellow rice and lentils, then added onions, bell peppers, and spinach. I put some turmeric chicken because the panda craves poultry. Shiba's special sauces included a red sauce, some red curry sauce, and korma. All were real mild for me. As the woman rolled this $6.99 burrito up in a giant tortilla (looked like a whole wheat flour tortilla), it looked fairly substantial, probably somewhere around 1.5 pounds. The burrito got heated up, then served to me.

Happy Curry Burrito
(Happy Curry Foods)
The woman then added a small helping of this red chile paste that brought more life to the party. It had almost this cranberry-like aftertaste intermingled with cayenne and other red chiles (they never told me which type of red chiles).

A fairly spicy red chile paste
I thought the burrito was good, with the only concern being the chicken. It looked and tasted dry when I bit into it (overcooked, probably didn't help leaving it out to get cold), and all the reheating and liquid in the world really can't save it. At first, I thought about taking half of the burrito home, but then I just stopped caring and wolfed it all down right there. Panda nukes food again via TKO.

A man there tried to sell me on a mango lassi, but I passed on the offer this time. I've had the drink before at other Indian places; it's very good stuff.

The Khana plate ($6.99) is their version of a make-your-own Indian plate. I may also have to try some samosas. They are $3 and $4, but at least they are larger than what I'm used to seeing. Heck, they even have a business lunch option that serves five people. I wonder how big it is, because I'm always curious as to how many adults (with average appetites) that I can eat as much as. Two people? Three? Five? Who knows.

I thought it was an OK first experience at Happy Curry Foods. The food didn't wow me, but it was good and certainly has potential in my eyes to be better. Extremely nice people. I hope to return. 6.5/10

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