One of Brooklyn's Newest Indian Restaurants Masterfully Highlights Goan Fare

© Provided by Eater A selection of dishes from Indian Table (clockwise from top left): chicken chettinad, avial, khada masala gosht, and Goan shrimp curry.

Of the dozen or so regional cuisines of India available in New York City, the one that best showcases its international roots is from Goa. Yet, apart from the ubiquitous vindaloo, Goan food hasn’t been easy to come by here (with Cardamom in Sunnyside, Queens, being the rare exception).

The family of our most famous Indian chef, the late Floyd Cardoz, came from Goa, though he featured the food of his native state only occasionally. Now, another Goan chef has appeared, who focuses more on this fascinating cuisine. Eric McCarthy was born in the Indian state and arrived in New York in 2001, after a long career cooking in India and on cruise ships. Here, he worked at Tamarind, Tulsi, and Brick Lane Curry House — where he introduced the restaurant’s phaal, which is said to be the city’s spiciest curry.

© Provided by Eater Indian Table, in a walk-down storefront in Cobble Hill.

Six months ago, McCarthy opened Indian Table on Court Street in Cobble Hill, a rather nondescript name for a wonderful restaurant. Down a few steps from the sidewalk, the dining room is dark and deep, boasting ornate geometric tiles, exposed beams, dangling brass light fixtures, and a teal-blue color scheme. There’s something ship-like about it, and McCarthy can be seen moving around in his chef’s whites through swinging doors that lead to the kitchen.

The first dish to hit the table is a novelty in an Indian restaurant: Caldo verde ($8). The name refers to the Portuguese national soup, here reinterpreted in a distinctively Goan way. Instead of coarse kale leaves and pork sausage slices in a Knorr-ish broth, it comes with a masala-laced spinach puree that renders the soup a mossy shade of green and is sweetly pungent. Ship’s biscuits — a staple of shipboard cuisine — float on top of this vegetarian version, as if just crumbled on a frigate’s rolling deck.

Other satisfying appetizers abound — some from Goa, others from nearby regions or invented by the chef. Coconut shrimp ($12) features five behemoth beauties cooked neither mushy nor hard and coated with a chunky white glaze tasting of coconut, tamarind, and black mustard seed. Also for shrimp lovers, there’s an entree called Goan shrimp curry ($22) that adds the stronger flavors of cumin, ginger, and mangosteen to the mix, the latter an astringent purple fruit native to Southeast Asia that has become a cornerstone of southern India’s agriculture.

The small western coastal state with an area of 1,429 square miles and population of 1.8 million has become known as a beach resort in modern times; but it was a Portuguese colony for 451 years, ending after a brief military action in 1961. Over the centuries, the port welcomed foodstuffs from all over the world, including such important non-native ingredients as chiles, tomatoes, tamarind, and potatoes, without which modern Indian food is nearly inconceivable.

© Provided by Eater Caldo verde is a vegetarian spinach soup.
© Provided by Eater Tulsi paneer features compressed fresh cheese.
© Provided by Eater Golden bhel arrives topped with gold foil — yes it’s really gold.

Among the far-ranging collection of 14 soups and apps, there are a couple of chaats from Mumbai. One, golden bhel, is a heap of crunchy fried snacks festively tricked out with gold foil that ripples with the slightest breeze. Basil isn’t an ingredient one normally associates with Indian food, but the herb is featured at Indian Table in its tulsi paneer ($12). Cubes of fantastically compressed fresh cheese — denser than New York cheesecake — are dribbled with a sauce of basil and cranberry, showing off the chef’s deft assortment of globe-spanning flavors.

But occasionally, some of his wilder experiments go awry such as the tower of beets called Kashmiri tikki. The greenish ricotta-thickened sauce that cascades over the sides tastes of apricot, fennel, and tomatillo, and the combination doesn’t quite work. By contrast, McCarthy’s take on goat biryani ($20) is a resounding success. Rather than using the southern model for the dish associated with Hyderabad, he travels to Lucknow in the north, and reproduces the biryani with a pastry crust, as popularized by Adda. But while the crust in that version is thin and cracker-like, at Indian Table it’s more like a naan, which absorbs the flavors of the casserole and can be torn apart, folded up, and used to scoop up mouthfuls of the biryani.

© Provided by Eater Indian Table’s epic goat biryani.
© Provided by Eater Use the crust to scoop up bites of biryani.

The goat is more profuse and highly spiced than usual. My friends and I agreed McCarthy’s is the best goat biryani in town. There are knockout curries, too, including a chicken chettinad associated with Chennai (was known as Madras). Rendered a lovely shade of beige, both black pepper and dried red chiles make it punishingly spicy, a reputation the dish enjoys back in India. Meanwhile, the Goan chicken vindaloo is less spicy. Inspired by a Portuguese original called carne de vinha d’alhos, in which meat or poultry is poached in red wine and garlic, the chef laces his stew with feni, a traditional Goan liqueur made from the cashew fruit native to Brazil.

© Provided by Eater Mustard parval chole, a vegetarian curry featuring black chick peas and mustard oil.

There are a couple of great vegetarian curries, including avial, a dish popular in Kerala and Tamil Nadu that deposits a stunning array of vegetables in a sweet coconut gravy. McCarthy works at keeping the assortment of vegetables Indian, and thus uses drumstick, a vegetable you might not have encountered. Looking like celery but related to thistles, it wraps soft flesh like an artichoke heart around coarse fibers, and must be eaten by raking the soft parts off with your teeth before discarding the fibers. It’s a fun dish to eat, but you do have to dig the vegetable out of the gravy.

Ultimately, I find that an Indian restaurant lives and dies based on the excellence of its breads. Sure, Indian Table offers the Deep South favorite lacha paratha, based on a compressed puff pastry with a buttery finish. But even more interesting is bacon naan ($6), featuring little pockets of crumbled bacon in a puffy and yeasty dough. As you tweeze up the last morsels of bacon fallen onto the plate, you’ll wonder: How did this unusual flatbread come to be?

© Provided by Eater Bacon naan would be very good for breakfast.

Internet Explorer Channel Network
News Related

OTHER NEWS

Jennica Garcia Says Alywn Uytingco 'Expressed Desire For Family Restoration'

After announcing their separation earlier this year, Jennica Garcia and Alwyn Uytingco  are working on patching things up. Last night, Jennica revealed that she and Alwyn are talking about possibly ... Read more »

Hong Kong restaurant scene back to (almost) full glory, but owners worry over new pressures

Eighteen months ago in April 2020, during Hong Kong’s second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, I put a temporary hiatus on restaurant reviews. The food and beverage scene – normally ... Read more »

EPL GW-8 Pre-Deadline Chat

© Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images Jurgen Klopp and the Reds remain the only undefeated team in the EPL. They kick the weekend off against Watford. Saturday, ... Read more »

Key part of Biden's climate agenda likely to be cut on Manchin's opposition - NYT

© Reuters/Joshua Roberts FILE PHOTO: Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) speaks during hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington (Reuters) – A key part of U.S. President Joe Biden’s climate agenda – ... Read more »

Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green Finalize Their Divorce

Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green are officially, legally single. The former couple filed their divorce judgement on Friday, Oct. 15, and their divorce has been finalized after nearly a ... Read more »

How a Final Fantasy 14 player uses a Ring Fit to explore Eorzea

© Provided by GamesRadar Final Fantasy 14 Controller modder SuperLouis64 has used his talents to combine the Nintendo Switch Ring Fit attachment with Final Fantasy 14 to host a charity ... Read more »

TikTok Dad Has a Theory About the Subtle Way 'Bluey' Honors Rainbow Babies

© Provided by Mom.com Michael Vaughn/Bluey If you’ve got a kid under 5, chances are they’re obsessed with Bluey. (And honestly, chances are so are you.) The ABC Kids series ... Read more »

Shoppers Say This Lightweight Comforter Is the Only One That Keeps Them Cool All Night

© Provided by Real Simple amazon.com Your comforter is one of the most important parts of your bedroom. In addition to making your space feel as cozy as possible, comforters ... Read more »

Britney Spears Reveals Fears About Post-Conservatorship Life: ‘I'm Afraid I'll Make a Mistake'

© Courtesy of Everett Collection As #FreeBritney gets closer to becoming a reality, Britney Spears is opening up about her fears regarding life after her 13-year conservatorship. In a lengthy ... Read more »

Joanna Gaines Giving Away $50,000 in Honor of Magnolia's 18th Anniversary

© Provided by People Cindy Ord/Getty Joanna Gaines is in the giving spirit on the 18th anniversary of her business, Magnolia. The HGTV star is giving away $50,000 to an ... Read more »

Learning “the Squeeze” Can Teach Your Child to be More Patient, Say Experts

© Aleksandra Pavlova / EyeEm/Getty Images Raise your hand if this scenario sounds familiar. You’ve just picked up your kid from school and are chatting to her teacher about what ... Read more »

Eve Is Pregnant, Expecting First Baby With Husband Maximillion Cooper

Eve is preparing to welcome a little valentine. The 42-year-old announced she and husband Maximillion Cooper are expecting their first child together on Friday, Oct. 15. She shared a photo ... Read more »

Fact check: Plastic water bottles left in hot cars don't release dioxins, do leach other chemicals

© ANDREAS SOLARO, AFP via Getty Images A woman drinks water from a bottle to cool off from the heat as she attends the Sunday Angelus prayer delivered by Pope ... Read more »

Our 2021 Toyota Sienna Is Already in High Demand

© Marc Urbano – Car and Driver All-wheel drive and the hybrid powertrain’s fuel economy add to the appeal. Introduction No one ever thinks minivan is the answer when asked: ... Read more »

Darren Criss and Wife Mia Are Expecting a Baby: 'The Ultimate Collab'

© Provided by People Darren Criss/Instagram Darren Criss is becoming a father! The Glee star, 34, announced he and wife Mia Criss are expecting their first child together. Criss revealed ... Read more »

Darren Criss and Wife Mia Swier Are Expecting a Baby: 'The Ultimate Collab'

© Provided by People Darren Criss/Instagram Darren Criss is becoming a father! The Glee star, 34, announced he and wife Mia Swier are expecting their first child together. Criss revealed ... Read more »

Real Madrid Castilla vs Barcelona B match preview

© Photo by Victor Carretero/Real Madrid via Getty Images Real Madrid Castilla face FC Barcelona B on Saturday at 9 pm local time. Castilla have been really struggling this season, ... Read more »

Union Face Montréal FC Ahead of Playoff Push

© Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images The Philadelphia Union have been rolling as of late. Winners of four of their last five games, the boys in blue ... Read more »

A Food Editor Explains Why You Don't Actually Need Ice To Make The Viral TikTok Salmon Bowl

© Justin Sullivan We were so obsessed with Emily Mariko’s famous TikTok Salmon Rice Bowl that we had to write a recipe to never forget how it is made! I ... Read more »

Supporter's XI: Inter Miami

© Photo by Omar Vega/Getty Images It was an extremely interesting international break for Columbus Crew supporters the last two weeks. Lower.Com Field hosted the United States Men’s National Team ... Read more »

TV Writers Advised to Take Their Own Notes if Writers Assistants Strike

© Cheyne Gateley for Variety TV writers may soon have to take their own notes as their assistants will be on the picket lines if IATSE calls a strike on ... Read more »

Pamper Yourself With 20 Percent off Silk Robes, Pillowcases, and More During Blissy's Fall Sale

SIlk—the cool, natural fiber that comes from insect larvae—has long been associated with luxury, but over the last few years, the benefits it can potentially have on hair and skin ... Read more »

This Fan-Favorite Mascara Brand Launched Its First-Ever Lash Serum & It's 28% Off Right Now

© Design: Ashley Britton/SheKnows. Struggling with lash fallout? We found a best-selling solution, and it’s your lucky day because Amazon is having on a beloved Lash Sensational Boosting Serum. You ... Read more »

Downtown Japanese Restaurant Maiko Is Closing for the Construction of Another High-Rise Building

© Maiko/Facebook Sushi from Maiko Downtown Japanese restaurant Maiko Sushi Lounge is officially closing this month. Its last day of service will be on Wednesday, October 27. The 311 West ... Read more »

Bella Poarch joins HyperX as a brand ambassador

© Provided by Dot Esports Bella Poarch has signed on as a HyperX brand ambassador, the company announced on Oct. 14. The 24-year-old influencer will be one of the faces ... Read more »

Cloudy skies, scattered rains over parts of Luzon, Visayas due to ITCZ

© Bernadette A. Parco Cloudy skies weather PHOTO BY BERNADETTE A. PARCO A Low Pressure Area (LPA) was estimated at 405 kilometers west of Coron, Palawan embedded along the Intertropical ... Read more »

Iliana Regan Officially Departs From Her Michelin-Starred Restaurant in Chicago

© Photo by Kendra Stanley-Mills for The Washington Post via Getty Images Iliana Regan laughs while at Milkweed Inn. Iliana Regan, the acclaimed chef and owner behind Elizabeth, has officially ... Read more »

Friday Poll: Should Italiano try Castrovilli on the wing?

© Photo by Massimo Insabato/Archivio Massimo Insabato/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images Since cracking his body against the goalpost against Genoa and spending a couple of nights in a hospital, Gaetano ... Read more »

Warzone anti-cheat system "leak" was reportedly part of planned public testing

© Provided by GamesRadar call of duty Vanguard Update: Today’s apparent “leak” of Call of Duty’s new kernel-level anti-cheat was reportedly seen as an inevitability by Activision, and a relatively ... Read more »

Fans' Wizarding World Knowledge Tested in Harry Potter: Hogwarts Tournament of Houses — First Look

The Harry Potter franchise is expanding its reach with an all-new quiz show! A four-part competition event — titled Harry Potter: Hogwarts Tournament of Houses — is heading to TBS ... Read more »

How to complete RTTK de Light SBC in FIFA 22 Ultimate Team

© Provided by Dot Esports EA Sports added an 87-rated Road to the Knockouts (RTTK) version of Matthijs de Ligt from Piemonte Calcio to FIFA 22 today. This item is available through ... Read more »

Where to find Mysterious Conches in Genshin Impact, and what it's used for

© Provided by GamePur The Mysterious Conches in Genshin Impact are special items found by the beaches of Kannazuka, used as bartering materials for a certain man’s chests. Collecting these ... Read more »

How to get the King Slime Crown in Final Fantasy XIV's Dragon Quest X crossover event

© Provided by Dot Esports Final Fantasy XIV offers countless cosmetic options in the game, some to go in battle and others that are more suited for social events. The ... Read more »

Five things we'd like to see when Sounders visit Dynamo

© Max Aquino / Sounder at Heart It’s been more than two years since the Seattle Sounders last visited the Houston Dynamo. They’ll return there on Saturday, riding a four-game ... Read more »

Whataburger Appears to be Heading to the Atlanta Metro

© Provided by Southern Living Whataburger It may be about to get a whole lot easier to get a honey butter chicken biscuit in the Atlanta metro area. The beloved Whataburger is reportedly ... Read more »

This 'Cloud-Like' Mattress Topper Gave Shoppers the 'Best Sleep They've Had in Months'—and It's Up to 41% Off

© Provided by Real Simple amazon.com If you’re frequently tossing and turning in your sleep or if you wake up with back pain, it may be time to rethink your ... Read more »

Tiffany Trump Takes a Break from Planning a Greek Wedding to Celebrate Birthday with Mom Marla Maples

© Provided by People Tiffany trump/Instagram Tiffany Trump paused planning for a big, fab Greek wedding to celebrate her 28th birthday on Wednesday. She was seen in Instagram videos partying ... Read more »

Netflix fires trans employee organizing walkout protest against Chapelle special for allegedly leaking ‘confidential' information

© Provided by New York Daily News FILE – This Jan. 29, 2010, file photo shows the company logo and view of Netflix headquarters in Los Gatos, Calif. Netflix’s normally ... Read more »

Miley Cyrus Says There Have Been 'Intense Spurts of Change' in Her Life in Handwritten Letter to Fans

© Provided by People Amy Sussman/Getty Miley Cyrus Onto the next! Miley Cyrus is bidding adieu to her Plastic Hearts era and is gearing up for her next project, one ... Read more »

Here's How Much Bill Gates' Daughter Jennifer Gates' Wedding Reportedly Cost

© AP Photo/Thibault Camus. As the daughter of Bill and Melinda Gates, Jennifer Gates has to have a spectacular wedding, right? The wedding on Saturday wasn’t going to have a ... Read more »