Best Indian Halal dishes at Tandoor Saigon
At Tandoor Saigon, you’ll find some of the best Indian and halal food in Ho Chi Minh City. Three of Tandoor’s chefs are Indian Muslims who are highly experienced in Halal culinary techniques and they source the best halal meats and ingredients from the most reputable halal food distributors here in Saigon.
Indian gastronomy is heavily influenced by Islamic culinary traditions, thanks to a colourful history of Muslim emperors and kings. The Taj Mahal, one of the most iconic structures in India, was a mausoleum commissioned for emperor Shah Jahan for his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. Shah Jahan was the fifth emperor of the Islamic Mughal lineage, descended from what is now modern-day Uzbekistan. This complex lineage is also connected to Mongolian and Turkic kings; there is no wonder as to why Indian gastronomy is so flavourful and boundless!
Enough history, here is a comprehensive list of the best classic, South Asian Halal dishes you’ll be able to savour at Tandoor Saigon.
Reshmi Murgh Malai
These tasty chicken kebabs originate from the Mughal Dynasty which draws huge influence from Persian Cuisine. If you like Tandoori-style chicken, you’re going to adore these! Chicken fillets are first marinated in cheese, cream and lime juice and various spices such as green chillies, coriander leaves and black pepper, then grilled at high heat. These irresistible grilled skewers are best enjoyed with Tandoor Saigon’s authentic Naan flatbreads and Tandoori Paratha.
Lamb Seekh Kebab
Seekh Kebab are amongst the most popular Pakistani and Punjab comfort foods. Minced lamb is blended with onions, chillies and Chef Khan’s secret blend of spices and then grilled on a skewer. The texture of Seekh Kebabs should never be too crumbly nor too soft; you’ll find that those found on Tandoor Saigon’s menu are the perfect consistency. Just like the Reshmi Murgh Malai chicken kebabs, Seekh Kebabs are also a perfect match with other classics such as Garlic Butter Naan and Chicken Butter Masala. A worthy contender for the best kebab in Ho Chi Minh City!
We’re pretty sure you’ve tried keema, and we’re very sure you’ve eaten tons of Naan. The name Keema Naan is a hundred percent self-explanatory; spicy minced lamb stuffed in raw unleavened flatbread, grilled in a scorching hot tandoor oven. Chef Khan’s flavourful lamb keema recipe is a good reason to sample this flatbread creation. What could be better than to have two of your favourite things in a perfect hybrid recipe?
Sometimes also spelled Jalfrezi, this cooking style is yet another glorious remnant of the Mughal Dynasty. In essence, mains such as chicken or vegetables are first stir-fried with butter, ginger and garlic, then cooked with spices and a key ingredient; bell peppers. Bell peppers sweetness and a slight tang to Jalfraizi that makes the dish highly appetising. At Tandoor Saigon, this epic ‘casserole’ also includes beans, carrots, potatoes, green peas and onion.
As the name suggests, the dish is a direct result of Iranian gastronomical influence. Unlike typical kebabs, Chicken Irani is less spicy and focuses on the subtle sweetness of poultry. The secret lies in the application of cashew paste, which is used to marinate chicken thigh with other ingredients such as yoghurt, lime juice and green chillies before grilling. The fragrance and accentuated nutty sweetness of cashews after cooking is alluring and difficult to describe. Yet another rare dish that can only be found at Tandoor Saigon.
Biryani is one of the most celebrated and recognised Halal foods in the world. Beyond India, it is readily available in places such as Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and the Middle East, thanks to its Islamic roots. The most important ingredient that makes biryani stand out from countless other rice dishes of the world is basmati rice. Long and slender and low in starch, basmati remains nutty and with a delicious bite after cooking, while exuding a floral aroma not unlike jasmine rice.
Biryani can be made using other meats, but we’ve chosen lamb biryani to represent India’s diverse culture; Hindus abstain from beef, making lamb a universally accepted choice of meat for both Hindus and Muslims.
Many recipes and variants of Biryani exist and Tandoor Saigon’s interpretation doesn’t disappoint. Generous chunks of lamb are marinated in a special masala mix featuring nineteen different spices before being sauteed with onions and mint leaves over a low flame. Once the lamb reaches the desired fragrance and texture, basmati rice is added and slow cooked. The rice soaks up all the deep flavours, while the meat remains juicy and tender.
Image source: Tandoor Indian Restaurant