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Kofta

Kofta curry from Kake da Hotel in Delhi, India.

What: “Kofta” means meatballs, although in one of the most popular Mughlai dishes, malai kofta, the balls in question are veg, made with paneer. Otherwise, the kofta will likely be minced and spiced mutton (also called keema), unless it’s nargisi kofta, which means a hard-boiled egg coated in ground meat (and which may have inspired the U.K.’s Scotch egg). In any case, the fried kofta balls are typically smothered in a lovely creamy curry sauce, patiently waiting for your naan to scoop it up.

Where: Our kofta curry in question came from Kake da Hotel (9136-666820; 67, Municipal Market, Connaught Circus, map), on the outer circle of central Delhi’s Connaught Place. It’s not actually a hotel but a good, reliable source of hot, fresh Punjabi curries. Go upstairs for seating and service.

When: Daily, noon-midnight

Order: The kofta curry (140 rupees), which are balls of minced mutton in a rich, spicy red gravy. Really nice, especially when the staff comes by with a second helping of the sauce, dumping extra gravy into the bowl. Also consider the saag chicken, dal makhani—and definitely get lots of naan.

Alternatively: Give nargisi kofta a whirl at Mughlai favorite Al-Jawahar (2327-5987; Bazaar Matia Mahal, opposite Gate 1, Jama Masjid, map), and/or paneer-filled malai kofta at the original Moti Mahal (3704, Netaji Subhash Marg, Daryaganj, approx. map), both in Old Delhi. In central Delhi, look for the latter at Punjabi restaurant Pindi (2338-7932; 16, Pandara Rd. Market, map).


 
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