Mangalorean at Sanadige

It’s refreshing when an eatery doesn’t promote itself wildly but still gets the footfall thanks to word-of-mouth reviews. We tried Sanadige in Malcha Marg for this very reason and came away impressed.

‘Sana-di-ge’ refers to a traditional brass lamp in Tulu, and there is a beautiful one to greet you as you walk in. While one may question what a vegetarian will eat at a restaurant known for great seafood, Sanadige has me covered.

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This kokum and buttermilk drink was light and refreshing, though I couldn’t really taste the kokum.

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Yes, I ordered a Vegetable Galauti. No shame in the veggie galauti game. Wanted to see why Sanadige would even bother to make a galauti but it was very good.

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The Paneer Ghee Roast was fantastic, a flavourful combination of paneer roasted in desi ghee and podi (gunpowder). I enjoyed the Sanadige speciality Basale Kadale curry, black channa cooked in spinach, along with handkerchief-soft neer dosas. The Pundi, a steamed semolina cake, was not to my taste. I enjoyed the dessert, Elaneer (tender coconut) Payasam, definitely a must for coconut lovers. Overall, a meal I would happily go back for especially if it included any version of the ghee roast.

On a lazy Saturday, we decided to go to Sanadige. The menu provided enough choice for vegetarians, including a north Indian section for the non-adventurous. I started with the chutneys and papad, and a Bunta Cooler. I ordered it a second time – to get this photo and also because it was that good!

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The Paneer Ghee Roast was excellent. It was not too spicy and was loaded with ghee which gave the bland paneer a nice punch. The Vegetable Galouti (how can we not order from the north Indian menu) was made well but somewhat bland. The curry was made from black chickpea and spinach called Basale Kadale. It was surprisingly not as south Indian as I had expected but paired well with the breads we had ordered (a basket of Appams, Neer Dosa, Pundi and Moode).

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There was a semolina idli from Mangalore called Moode which was delightful. As was the Appam and Neer Dosa. There was another rice and coconut idli which I didn’t much care for. I skipped dessert, but for those who like payassam it should be tried here. A good change from regular north Indian fare, with great service and presentation.

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I ordered the pan-fried Anjal (Surmai) as an appetizer. It was beautifully cooked, tasted fresh and the outer layer of spice added a nice crispness. The little chunks of fried masala stuck on the fish felt gravelly in the mouth – which I loved.  As a dish, it hit all the flavour notes I was looking for. However, I wasn’t too happy with what I paid for this single fillet. Surmai is standard fare as far as Indian seafood goes, and frying it is probably the easiest way to cook it. Was I happy paying a grand for a thin Surmai fillet? No.

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As a child I hated the flavour of coconut, probably because of Bounty, but now I love it. The Elaneer Payasam did not disappoint! It’s a serving of chilled kheer with generous amounts of tender coconut cream mixed in. I could have easily had another bowl.

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Sanadige, 22/48 Commercial Centre, Malcha Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021