Cheap Eats 2012: Minerva Indian Cuisine

Cheap Eats 2012

These vast dining halls put on some of the most varied Indian lunch buffets around—all for $9.95 a person ($10.95 on weekends). But ordering off the menu has its advantages, namely hard-to-find preparations such as goat vindaloo, goat curry, and mutton rogan josh. Other keepers are bhindi masala, or roast okra; Chicken 65, scented with curry leaves; an egg dosa; and a creamier-than-most version of the classic lentil stew, dal makhani. If you shy away from searingly spicy food, mention that—the kitchen assumes everyone likes things hot. Offbeat chutneys add interesting notes to such familiar dishes as butter chicken, and breads like roti and onion kulcha are nicely done.

Also good: Vegetable, onion, and spinach pakoras; chepala pusulu, fish with red chilies and tamarind; lamb korma with cardamom and coconut.

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.