Budget Crunch: Delhi Chaat
There’s some debate about whether or not spicy food boosts your metabolism and assists in weight loss, or whether you just get satiated sooner when eating spicy foods and therefore eat smaller portions. Either way, there does appear to be a relationship between eating spicy food and eating less. And that’s just one of the benefits of a budget-friendly meal at Delhi Chaat in Amherst.
There’s no doubt about it, Delhi Chaat is a haven for those who like spicy or sweet foods. Chaat is a Hindi term meaning “savory snacks,” and there’s no shortage of those on offer at this relatively new eatery. On a recent visit, we ordered several items from the chaat menu for our table of four. The two-piece Samasa Chaat ($4.95) is a couple of samosas (triangular pastries filled with a potato/pea mixture) smothered in yogurt, tamarind, and mint sauces, and chick peas. The Bhel Puri Chaat (also $4.95) is another standout, and was ordered by no fewer than three tables while we were there. This dish is a mixture of crunchy puffed rice, potatoes, fried noodles, red onions, and a bit of sauce (tamarind, again). Several of the specialty dishes at Delhi Chaat are a spicy delight as well, although not quite as budget friendly as the chaat menu items. The Lamb Kebab ($14.95) was a favorite at our table, and we managed to scarf down every last marinated cube of meat as well as all the sauteed onions accompanying the dish.
The plethora of desserts on display drew my young son like a moth to a flame. We tried Coconut Burfi ($6.00) and the mix of sugar, milk, coconut, almond, and cardamom is delightful with after-dinner chai ($2.95). Burfi (available nine different ways at Delhi Chaat) is the equivalent of Indian fudge, and a bit of saturated sweetness is just the thing after your taste buds have danced through a spicy meal.
Delhi Chaat is a welcome addition to the Indian restaurant scene in Western New York. It offers dishes not previously available here, and thereby adds complexity and nuance to our Indian restaurant offerings. So go get snacking.
3545 Sheridan Dr., Amherst
Rachel Fix Dominguez is a proud Buffalo native who loves eating well on a budget and is excited by our region’s expanding culinary options.