Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Eatsploring Indian Food in Valenzuela City: Incredible India and Vana's at Isabelle de Valenzuela

Okay, One Valenzuela had to be honest about this. Her first eatsploration of the Indian cuisine did not go that well before which led her not to try it again for quite a long while. When she dropped a gown in a laundry shop for dry cleaning near Our Lady of Fatima University, she had to let her happy feet roam the streets. Unwind. It's time to let loose a bit. Find something interesting. Then, of course, eat.

She then looked up and saw the signs near the towering condominium's entrance. Oh, FOOD. Indian Food! Fate has brought you here. Should I...? Yes, you have to at least give it another chance.

And thank goodness, she did. Here are two food spots which offer Indian cuisine at Isabelle de Valenzuela. So come along and read on. 

Business Hours: 10:00am to 10:00pm, daily
The very accommodating lady in the store said that many from the Indian community residing in the area have expressed their happiness on having a grocer which specifically sells items and spices to cook Indian food. True enough, One Valenzuela saw many things displayed in the store which cannot be found in the typical grocery. Rose water, for example. 
Incredible India also has branches in Manila, Makati, Las Pinas, and Alabang.

A number of snacks are lined up and are viewable already from the outside. Incredible India also has a table which has the snack samples for the visitors to taste. Many of these are quite spicy. Other than the snacks, there are also colorful posters that showcase staples which can be bought from the grocer like wheat flour, beer, rice, and ofcourse, their cooked food.    
Snacks which can be bought from Incredible India - Valenzuela Branch.

What's inside? Take a look at their posters.

The very warm people of Incredible India are welcoming for Indian food newbies like One Valenzuela. Mentioning that she does not know much about the Indian cuisine and that she cannot eat super spicy food, the people of Incredible India then suggested the meal sets on the wall. They also gladly went out of their way to explain what's going to be in the plate.
Incredible India's dining area
One Valenzuela ordered the Php99.00 meal set (5 in 1). The menu mentions that one can have a choice of  2 chapati or 1 rice, 1 subzi, 1 dhal, and 1 dessert. Subzi? It means vegetables. Dhal? It refers to lentils/legumes. Yep, tasting new food is accompanied with learning and adding new terms to one's vocabulary too. 
Rather than having the chapati or rice, One Valenzuela opted to get the roti chanai which was recommended to her (additional Php50 for this piece). Incidentally, One Valenzuela was able to watch Seetoh's The Food Suprise where she learned that roti chanai is "extremely popular" in Malaysia.   

The plate above has roti chanai for the bread, potato and cauliflower for the subzi, green peas masala for the dhal, and rasgulla for the dessert. Rasgulla is made of Indian cottage cheese and semolina dough in light sugar syrup. There are other meal sets to choose from. Moreover, they also have different kinds of samosa which you may want to try.

To eat, you simply dip the roti in the subzi or the dhal. One Valenzuela found the roti chanai on the sweet side. Its softness and flakiness pair well with the mildly spicy subzi and dhal. Then, end your meal with the rasgulla for dessert.

...which made One Valenzuela buy a few packs of roti chanai for take home. Yum.
Incredible India's Roti Chanai at Php50 a piece (2 pieces for Php80.00). Simply reheat this in a non-stick pan at home and enjoy!

Business Hours: 11:30am to 11:00pm, daily
Just a few steps beside Incredible India is Vana's Authentic North & South Indian Food. Since One Valenzuela cannot eat a lot in one go, she had to go back for Vana's when she picked up the gown from the laundry shop.

While ordering some things from the menu, she confirmed that the nearby Flavours food spot is connected to this restaurant. There are also a lot of things to try at Vana's and the staff is also helpful in recommending several items for eatsplorers like One Valenzuela.  
Vana's Authentic North and South Indian Food. Vana's accepts catering services for special occasions.

Order here using their menu. The menu is very customer friendly as it contains brief descriptions of the food items that Vana's offers.

Vana's Authentic North and South Indian Food menu has vegetarian and non-vegetarian appetizers, tandoori appetizers, soups, vegetarian plates, daal/Indian pulses, paneer/cottage cheese, fish and egg dishes, different types of bread, rice and biryani, yogurt drinks (lassi), and desserts.  There were also a few India / Chinese specials in the menu.

Since it was merienda time, One Valenzuela ordered Vana's vegetable samosa (Php49.00 for 2 pieces; a flaky crust made of maida and filled with spiced potatoes and peas), some naan (Php69; almost like pita bread; cooked in a tandoor), and the staff-recommended paneer tawa masala (Php169; paneer curry made in an onion-tomato-cashew base). Ah, yes, and a glass of yogurt. The yogurt is quite sour which cuts the spiciness of the paneer tawa masala.
Vegetable samosa

Naan and Paneer Tawa Masala. There were chunks of cottage cheese in the bowl. One Valenzuela will more likely order this again in the future. It's good!

Sweet lassi (Php69.00 per glass)

With the tummy full, better be back to Vana's next time for the Chicken Biryani.

On Eatsploring Indian Food. Overall, eating at Incredible India and Vana's Authentic North & South Indian Food served as a new start for One Valenzuela's eatsploration of the Indian cuisine. She believes that other than the food offered, the people behind both establishments serve as significant keys for more guests to better understand and appreciate Indian cuisine which eventually leads us to wanting to know more about the Indian culture. It's like serving a piece of India in one good plate. 

Both Incredible India and Vana's Authentic North & South Indian Food are located on the ground floor of Isabelle de Valenzuela (near its entrance). The condominium is easy to spot along McArthur Highway, Marulas, Valenzuela City (across The Original Savory).

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