When it comes to vegetarian food, I’m not a veggie burger or mock meat type of guy. Give me a vegetarian cuisine that’s based solely on the love of vegetables. It’s one of the reasons I love Indian cuisine, with all of its chaats and dosas, so much. One dish I’d never tried until a visit to Astoria’s Kurry Qulture is pav bhaji. Served with two slider size buns, I suppose one could think of it as veggie burger if one were inclined to such thoughts, which I am not.
“It’s a very popular item in Mumbai,” Sonny Solomon the Astoria resident behind Kurry Qulture said as he plunked down a plate bearing a mound of veggie mash and a pair of buns glistening with butter. The pav are the buns and the bhaji are the veggies, a wonderful cookup of cauliflower, potato, tomatoes, green peas, and carrots seasoned with cumin, coriander, turmeric and black pepper. Amchur, or dried mango powder, lends some tanginess to this lovely snack.
Kurry Qulture plans to offer a brunch version of pav bhaji crowned with an egg sometime in the near future. I highly suggest the kitchen take a page from some of the more outlandish brunches and add a cheese component. Sonny, if you’re reading this, I think you should call it Ghee Whiz.
Kurry Qulture, 36-05 30th Avenue, Astoria, 718-674-1212