Just about everyone we asked at the Saltaire Brewery yesterday said the Rajpoot (73 Otley Rd, Shipley, Bradford, BD18 2BJ) is – The Best Curry House in Shipley. Having stopped off in Shipley on our way back from an Afternoon at the Keighley Beer Festival, Hector took no persuasion to try this new Curry Experience. The International would have to wait another day.
We were Hungry, Starters were agreed upon. Clive ordered a Shami Kebab, Dr. Stan a Seekh Kebab, Hector the Lamb Chops and Jonathan a Mixed Kebab. Nothing new here then. The Mains would be accompanied by one of the following as an Inclusive Accompaniment – 3 Chappatties (sic), Basmati Rice or Plain Nan or Tandoori Roti. The Bradford Way.
Karella Gosht was on the Menu, Hector had to try this – Bitter Lemon cooked with Meat in Selected Spices, a Strong Bitter Lemon Flavoured Dish, Garnished with Ginger and Coriander. Dr. Stan selected the Bhindi Gosht which is what Hector had last night, Interesting for Comparison Purposes. Jonathan chose one of his Standards – Keema Matter (sic). Nine Chapattis would accompany these three Dishes.
Clive ordered Chicken, again. Garlic Chilli Chicken this time, and a Keema Naan.
The Order was placed with a Young Waiter who appeared to be a bit harassed. There was about another Dozen Diners, a large Table of Eight took up some time. I wonder if they were charged a Surcharge for bringing so much Custom?
The First Rule of Curry
The Starters were Excellent! The Lamb Chops may have been on the Standard size, but they packed the Required Flavours and Bite. Hector is thoroughly enjoying Lamb Chops currently. The Seekh Kebab was described by Dr. Stan as – Tasty and Spicy. That’s a Good Start. Clive considered his Shami Kebab to be – Superb, but a Bit Dry. The Yoghurt-based Sauce was for him. Jonathan remarked – I thoroughly approved of both your Starters. Ah, the Joy of the Mixed Kebab. Hector must try this more often, or even once.
When the Starters are this Good, the Curry tends to Disappoint. Jonathan reminded me of my own adage.
Dr. Stan and Clive came out on top. Dr. Stan enjoyed – the Balance of Spice and Flavours, the Okra was also to his liking. Clive said his Curry – did exactly what it said on the tin. Thoroughly Enjoyable. His Naan looked totally different from anything served up, anywhere. A Calzone Keema Naan? Folded with the Mince inside as per a Pizza, Clive was in his element – Another Excellent Shipley Naan!
I would normally state when the Curry served – looks the part. The promised Garnish of Ginger and Coriander was omitted. The Citrus from the Karela was the dominant Flavour. The Kick was pleasantly noticeable. The Lamb was cut small, the Bradford Way but was decidedly Tough. The lack of Oil Slick collecting on the base of the Karahi triggered a memory. Mr. Shabir Hussain of Bradford’s Akbar Chain personally had one of his Glasgow Chefs demonstrate for Hector how they dab off the Excess Oil before serving. One concludes The Chef had put considerable effort into this Dish. A pity, because more seasoning was definitely required. Then – The Wow Factor – might have manifested itself. Not Outstanding – was my final memo to self. Jonathan concurred. OK, without being Spectacular. He too questioned the Level of Seasoning in his Keema Mutter.
£39.00. Four Mains and Four Starters for less than a Tenner each! Not bad at all.
Hector was distracted, no Calling Card was left. Indeed, The Staff were quite invisible as we left for our train back to Forster Square.