Handi Cuisine of India – Vancouver, BC

Handi Cuisine of India
4432 Dunbar Street
Vancouver, BC
(604) 738 3186

Dining solo has been a topic that’s come up from time to time in posts as well as in various comments.  Lately, when I’ve had to eat alone, I’ve tended to go the take away route.  Perhaps I’m being influenced by those who cringe at the thought of eating on their own, whereas in the past I had not been so self-conscious…

Handi Cuisine of India situated in the Dunbar neighbourhood (with another location in West Van) is a place I’d driven past many times over the years but had not yet gone inside to order.  It seemingly has a strong local following and reputed solid service, so my expectations were good.  Recently, I was finally able to find out for myself by dialing ahead and placing an order for pickup.

Promptly ready as told over the phone, I took it home and first unwrapped the naan, ordered separately.  Despite a short trip, the steam/moisture that had formed within the wrapped tin foil had resulted in a notable softening of the exterior.  I had some Basmati rice on hand so cooked some of that to supplement my meal.  I realized that I could have easily ordered some to go, but it slipped my mind.

My chosen Murgh (Chicken) Tikka Masala for $11.95 was quite the amount in terms of volume – easily more than enough for me, especially considering the naan and rice as well.

The tomato-base sauce (or I know some people will call it gravy) was ordered mild, and it was a complex meld of flavours, including the standouts red chili, ginger, garlic, cumin and cardamom.  The boneless chunks of chicken breast meat were generously proportioned and scattered throughout the dish as well.

All in all, I was very pleased with my first and only (so far) order from Handi.  I noticed during my pickup that for dine-in customers, the seats near the window facing the street seemed to be most popular.  So next time I’ll grab a table with a view of Dunbar St. and I’ll definitely try other selections from their Northern-style Indian menu.

All this talk has me longing to take another trip to south Asia, two visits in the last two years to India just isn’t enough when it comes to even remotely trying to get a sampling of the intense variety of regional cuisine of that incredible country.  For the time being, Handi will be my readily accessible quick fix…

Handi Cuisine of India on Urbanspoon

4 thoughts on “Handi Cuisine of India – Vancouver, BC

  1. In a way, it is a matter of you “getting over” that dining solo stigma. While it is true that, in the past, dining was an event on its own, times have changed and, as a result, dining solo might be required (business trips? Moving to other cities and on your own?). There are several things you can do about the self-consciousness: as suggested once by Ed (of Eat, Snap, Repeat) bring a book, in my case, I use my cell-phone to browse or do something else while waiting for the food. Or simply just ignore the stares of others.

    As for the food, is it me or the portion size seems to be larger than that served in restaurants? One seemingly good thing about having ordered this dish as takeout was that the sauce had thicken a bit – sometimes I think it is too “runny”. Oh, nice four leaf clover spoon! 🙂

    • Actually, its not me who has any issue with solo dining, I frankly don’t mind it at all. Its just those around me who’ve commented to me that its not something they prefer to do, which I can understand. I was just trying to say perhaps all the talk had made me think twice on this night. 🙂

      That’s a good point, I think the ‘take away time’ may have contributed to the thickening up of the curry I ordered. It was somewhat dense and not runny at all.

      • I agree that solo dining can be an issue (nerve racking) for some, but the flip side can be just as enjoyable for talkative guy like me. Chatting up the server/bartender can be an adventure on it’s own. I agree; a book/newspaper/cell phone are great choices.

        Speaking on portion sizes, I was reading an article in Men’s Health today that mentioned many appetizer/child plates are the equivalent of full sized portions from only 10-15 years back. Interesting when you think that people are eating out more and the population is growing in physical size.

        • The ability to feel comfortable enough to chat up anyone nearby (fellow customer) all depends on the atmosphere and mood of the place. In a more formal setting, virtually impossible. In a casual place with a communal table, its a lot easier. A recent experience I wrote about (https://foodosophy.wordpress.com/2009/09/24/swannies-seattle-wa/) was further enhanced by everyone in the place there for a specific purpose.

          That’s a frightening thing to hear that portion sizes have increased as much as that. It would explain the incredible size of some people I see when traveling in the US, which seems to have a greater problem with obesity than Canada.

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