These traditional appetizers, along with the elegant decor, linen napkins, and formal table service, begin to distinguish India Palace from its competition, and from its fast, casual counterpart.
One of the most exciting focal points in the restaurant is the tandoor cooking station, which is just visible behind a open-kitchen type window. The tandoor is a cylindrical clay oven which is commonly used for cooking skewered meats and baking fresh naan and roti bread. Unfortunately, there are not many vegan options from the tandoor.
On this visit, I tried two vegetable dishes: the Bhindi Do Pyaza, okra cooked with diced onions and spices, and the Saag Channa (my check said without cream-I don't know if it comes standard with cream or not), spinach cooked with chick peas. The dishes are inherently suited for sharing, and intended to be eaten with basmati rice or scooped with bread baked from the tandoor, such as the vegan-friendly Roti bread. Both dishes were each complex in their own regard. This is not surprising since India Palace uses a blend of different spices for each one of its curries. Sharma himself could hardly differentiate the mixtures for each dish.
Bhindi Do Pyaza
On a previous visit, I had the Channa Balti, which is a less well known dish representative of northwestern India. Balti-style dishes are both cooked and served in a cast iron pot (called the "balti"). Again, this dish is flavored with different spices including onion, garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, fennel and mustard seeds.
While India Palace may set the bar for Indian cuisine in Dallas, I think the bar could be raised slightly higher with regard to their vegan-friendliness. Whereas the variety of vegan-friendly dishes may be noteworthy, it is hard to discern whether there are any plot spoilers among them.
I mentioned to Sharma that it would be extremely helpful for vegans if they could clarify on their menu with something as simple as a little "v," since there were apparently so many items which would be suitable for vegan diners, that would otherwise go under the radar. He acknowledged this with a nod, before moving on to the next order of business.
12817 Preston Road #105
Dallas, TX 75230