On the night we arrived at Kathmandu, we combed every restaurant and eatery for a decent meal after spending a day at Kuala Lumpur for our connecting flight. Me and my buddy devoured too much Mee Gorengs and Kopi Ice on our KL layover/food trip and I was kinda expecting the same thing in Kathmandu.
After our 5-hour flight to Kathmandu, we were famished to death. It was 9:30 in the evening and it seemed like all the food establishments in Kathmandu called it a day. With nothing to munch for that evening we checked out our food stash and just delighted ourselves with M&M’s peanuts and some macadamia nuts – all brought from the Philippines.
I was really in a bad mood that night and didn’t wanna do anything. I just succumbed into the hunger and was overly dramatic about the situation – that’s me when I’m hungry. And sleepy.
I woke up that chilly morning still bearing the bad mood I had the night before. I was too hungry that all I could think about was to eat anything, like anything. We didn’t go further and had our breakfast at Hotel Ganesh Himal. It was very filling (and brought my sanity back) but I was yearning for more; a legit Nepali dish that I could truly enjoy.
During our “walking temple tours” around the city, we noticed a Nepali eatery along the road that serves Nepali dishes.
Welcome to Kantipur Tandoori Bhojanalaya, Kamal Pokhari was the only thing I understood on the signage outside the eatery (plus Coca Cola). And then Nepalese scripts were written all around it. This place looks like legit so we went inside to try out some authentic Nepali dish.
A Khana Set, as told by a server, is a typical Nepali dish which has steamed rice, dal, curried vegetables, pickles, salad, soup and a selection of meat item (mutton, chicken, lamb, paneer). We tried the chicken version. The Chow Mein, on the other hand, is your typical stir-fried noodles with some herbs and choice of meat toppings (chicken, buff). We had buff (Water Buffalo meat) as our toppings. Everything (plus two sodas) was priced at 520 Rupees (US$5.20).
As we were waiting for our food to be served, we saw some locals enjoying their Khana Sets (using their bare hands). It was quite noticeable how the side dishes were replenished instantaneously as soon as the cups were empty, and it’s for free!
Our food arrived in no time and we started digging into the Khana Set first. First in order was a fried tortilla-ish crackers. And then the soup. And then the fried veggies. And then the curried veggies. And then the meat. And then the tangy, sour yogurt dip. We were so overwhelmed that the moment our cups were cleared a server would replenish it with the same amount every time (except for the meat). We had to politely refuse the next batches of replenishments for we were quite full with almost three extra servings of each item. We were so overwhelmed. And the taste? It was quite good. You just have to get the right combination of stuff to munch on to really appreciate the dish.
|Nepali Khana Set|
|Chow Mein Buff|
|San Miguel is from the Philippines!|
And the guy gave me that and-so-what reaction.
I noticed a bakeshop across it so I got some pretzel-like bread too which they refer to as Cell (15 Rupees/US$ 0.15). At first bite, it became my favorite bread. I just love the crusty, tasty (not sweet) outer shell and the soft, chewy dough inside. I’m not a “bread person” but I was digging the Cell.
|Chow Mein, Nepali Black Tea and Cell.|
|I want those peanuts.|
Oh, it's chickpeas. Ugh!
Plain Naan or Roti?
We’ll get both.
We immediately got eight fresh Rotis on our plate and got some Egg Curry and Omelet Masala for the “dips”. So where do I start? I love the soft and flaky texture of the Roti, I can eat it on its own, as for the dips, both were great but I fell in love with Omelet Masala. The herbs and spices incorporated in its thick, curry-based sauce were divine. It was perfect and cheap too (360 Rupees/US$ 3.60 for everything plus sodas)
Around nine in the morning.
And we went back right there the next morning. End of story.