The first in a series of at home food and movie pairings. This month’s pair: The Lunchbox (film) and Aroma Restaurant.
Authentic Indian food that uses the freshest ingredients and Ayurvedic cooking concepts. In Ayurvedic cooking, a balanced dish combines elements of sweet, salty, sour, bitter, pungent, and astringent. Aroma Restaurant boasts a selection of vegan/vegetarian options, as well as meat-based entrees such as the adventurous bone-in goat curry. With a menu of more than 90 items, there’s something for everyone.
There are several curries available, chicken is my favorite, it’s simmered in a rich onion gravy making it tender and delicious. There are also great choices for kids, such as the sweet mango chicken. The Lamb Vindaloo, cooked with potatoes in vindaloo sauce is wonderful and the Tandoor oven specialties are unmatched. Naan (Indian bread) is a must-have – stuffed with cheese and almonds, mixed lamb, or just plain with garlic or herbs.
We highly recommend trying a side of raita (yogurt with seasonings and veggies); mango, mint or tamarind chutney counterbalance the yogurt spices perfectly.
If you want appetizers, try the platter of vegetable, chicken or fish pakoras, paneer pakoras and onion bhaji – all fried Indian delicacies, extremely popular and delicious. Enjoy them with dipping sauces and take yourself on a culinary vacation to magical India!
818 First Street, Benicia 707.745.1870, aromabenicia.com
The Lunchbox – a two minute review
Pair your chicken curry and spring apples with a delightfully satisfying Indian movie – The Lunchbox (2013), directed by Ritesh Batra. The film, set in Mumbai, revolves around a mistaken delivery by the Dabbawalas (a renowned, dazzling, and almost foolproof lunchbox service) of Mumbai.
The Lunchbox stars Irrfan Khan (Slumdog Millionaire, Life of Pi) as Saajan Fernandez, a lonely, widowed claims adjuster, who is more than ready to retire after 35 years of the same ol’ same ol’. He thinks he wants to be left alone.
Nimrat Kaur (Homeland) co-stars as Ila, a sweet and savvy housewife, who wants her husband’s love and attention. A mistaken delivery by the lunchbox delivery system facilitates an accidental introduction that leads to an ongoing message chain between Ila and Saajan, igniting a friendship between the two.
This charming story of curiosity, friendship, and the yearning of the human heart pleases the soul. The lead characters, as well as Ila’s “Auntie,” whom we never see, but learn to love, and Saajan’s eager but inept protégé, Aslam, round out the fullness of the experience.
A little drama, a little romance! A perfect companion for your naan!
Rated PG; 1hr 44min Subtitles