the kastoori restaurant in tooting, south london, is one of my favourite indian restaurants. the food it serves is vegetarian, cheap and delicious.
on our most recent visit we started with samosas (packed with a mixture of lentils and vegetables, gentled spiced but with a warming and unexpected cinnamon undertone) and dahi puri.
these puris are crispy shells, just over an inch in diameter, with the top removed and a filling of finely diced potatoes, chickpeas, puffed rice onions, pani puri sauce, sweet and sour sauce and a yoghurt sauce. you eat each puri in one go, enjoying the flavours and textures as they mix – soft gently spiced vegetables, tangy sweet and sour sauce (tamarind is the key i think), cooling yoghurt and the crispy puri.
for our main course we ordered the special tomato curry (this is a favourite of mine, fresh tomatoes in a rich lentil and slightly creamy sauce with an abundance of fresh coriander), panir passanda (a rich, almost meaty-tasting dish of paneer cheese pockets stuffed with mint, coriander and coconut served in a cashew and melon seed sauce) and the vegetable curry of the day – a dry pumpkin and spliut lentil dish. a couple of portions of rice and a couple of kastoori bhaturas (shallow-fried thin breads flavoured with fennel and sesame) and we were soon sated.
the problem with kastoori’s food is that each dish has a distinct flavour and so, no matter how full i feel, i just keep eating so i can have a “final” mouthful of each and every dish.
the food we had came to just over £20 between the two of us. given the price and the quality of the food, isn’t it time you paid kastoori a visit?
188 upper tooting road, london sw17 7ej
telephone: 020 8767 7027