Pandemic Takeout 23: Back to House of Curry (Rosemount, MN)

House of Curry was the second place we got takeout from when the “shelter in place” orders began in Minnesota. That was way back in late March/early April. As our takeout options/range expanded over the months, we somehow didn’t end up going back to House of Curry for our weekly takeout. That streak of neglect ended this past weekend when we stopped on our way home from a walk around Pike Island to get some lunch. As a small restaurant, or perhaps simply because they are appropriately cautious, House of Curry has not reopened for dining in. We were not looking to dine in anyway. Here is what we picked up.

This meal represented a major step forward for us as it was the first time that we cracked the problem of our kids and the House of Curry menu. In the past we’ve not been able to convince the boys to try much of what they have. They don’t serve naans and tandoori chicken and when eating Indian/South Asian food outside the home those are almost the only things they can be relied upon to eat. As a result, the missus and I have tended to eat at House of Curry sans the kids over the years—as I think about it, this is probably also why we didn’t go back there for takeout since early April. But at this meal, lightning struck. The younger boy loved their godhamba roti (a thin stretchy paratha is how I would describe it) with chicken curry (on the mild setting); and the older boy devoured their deviled shrimp with their egg roti.

The missus and I also had a new favourite at this meal. We’ve tried to eat their batu curry—a green eggplant curry with coconut milk—for many years without success. We’ve asked for it at every meal and been told they didn’t have it. I asked again for the batu curry when I called on this occasion. There was hesitation at the other end and then he said “yes”. But what showed up was not what was described or pictured on the menu on the website (or the print menu)—it was not a curry and there was no coconut milk or green eggplant. I looked at the takeout menu again and realized the batu curry had been replaced by something called batu moju (this has been the case for a while—I looked and it was on the takeout menu I picked up in early April too). Anyway, I’m sorry we never got to eat the batu curry but the batu moju is dynamite. It comprises purple/black eggplant fried and cooked with tamarind and cinnamon and other spices till it becomes a mash. Tangy and savoury with just a hint of heat, this pickled dish is not much to look at but it may be my current favourite eggplant dish in the Twin Cities metro.

Other highlights included the lamb kottu roti and the fish cutlets (which are really balls of fish mashed with potato and spices, breaded and fried). The only thing I was not crazy about was the chicken biryani which was tasty enough but a little nondescript compared to the biryanis in a generally similar style we’ve had from Kumar’s and Kabob’s. The only out and out disappointment though was that they did not have any watalappan ready at lunch. We really love this caramel custard made with jaggery and coconut milk and fragrant with cardamom. We missed it in April and missed it again this past weekend. Next time we’ll have to place an order for dinner.

For a look at the dishes, launch the slideshow below. Scroll down to see what might be coming next.

We got two lunches for the whole family out of this and still had some food left over. I’d say seven hungry adults could have eaten what we ordered and paid just over $16/head with a big tip. That’s not bad at all.

Okay, where to next? We might stick with the South Metro and pick up some Vietnamese food from the Cedar Avenue corridor. Or we might possibly head back out to University Avenue and finally get some of that Ethiopian food I’d been jonesing for a while ago. Let’s see.

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