Chennai-based Saravanaa Bhavan is perhaps one of the most recognizable brand-name for Indian vegetarian cuisine around the world. Its branch here in Petaling Jaya is the oldest and perhaps the best among its 6 KL-based outlets.
I couldn’t resist its “pane puri”, little globes of crisp, hollow pastries filled with spiced potatoes-onions-coriander. You’ll be given cups of “pane”, i.e. the water-based, tamarind-spiked liquid which you pour into the hollow pastries before popping them whole into your mouth - the pleasure of crunching into a pane puri’s crisp shell, releasing a torrent of sweet-sour-spicy liquid in your mouth, contrasting the textures with the soft-boiled mushy potatoes, crisp onions is nothing short of orgasmic.
The “pane puri” originated from Northern India and goes by various names: golgappa in Delhi and fuchka in Kolkata and Dhaka (Bangladesh). I’ve had some slathered with yoghurt and sprinkled with sev (deep-fried fine noodles) to add extra crunch in Bangalore, and there were those filled with vodka-cocktail in Delhi’s Indian Accent restaurant. In whatever forms and variations, they are invariably delish!
A more substantial dish I tried there was the tomato-onion uttapam, a thick, soft, spongey pancake studded with chillis, onions and coriander.
7, 52/2 Jalan Sultan
46200 Petaling Jaya
Tel: +603 7954 1755