Disease Proof

Eating to Live on the Outside: Electric Karma

I’m REALLY excited about this week’s restaurant! Electric Karma is right up my alley. It looks like a Yoga studio that serves food and—and as an aspiring Yogi—I LOVE that! Most importantly, the menu looks very good. So get ready, its time for another Eating to Live on the Outside.

Let’s start with the appetizers. If I had to pick, I’d go with the Samosas or the Vegetarian Pakoras. The Samosas are prepared with potatoes, peas, spices, herbs and served with tamarind chutney. Sounds great! Now, the Vegetarian Pakoras are made with spinach, cauliflower, potatoes and home-made tomato chutney. Hooray spinach!

Okay, I’m skipping the meat and poultry dishes and going right for the salads. There are five good ones: Tossed Green Salad, Kachumber Salad, Karma Salad, Ashoka Salad and the Tandoori Vegetarian Salad. Combined they’re made with A LOT of great stuff: romaine lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, dressing, red onions, cilantro, lime juice, red potatoes, tamarind chutney, gram flour vermicelli, mushrooms, paneer and eggplant. Out of all that I am ditching the paneer—it’s a cheese—and I’d order the dressings on the side. Good stuff though!

Onto the tofu dishes, I like the Tofu Tikka Masala and the Tofu Jalfrezzi. They make Tikka Masala with cooked tofu, bell peppers, onions, and spices. Simple, yet effective! The Tofu Jalfrezzi is pretty basic too; its just tofu, mixed vegetables and yellow curry sauce. Neither of these are better than the salads, but if you’re in the mood for tofu—they work!

Electric Karma, like a lot of Indian restaurants, has an entirely vegetarian section, which for people eating a vegetable-based diet is GREAT. Technically, I could probably go for any of the dishes with only minor alterations or concessions, but here are the ones I REALLY liked.

The Aloo Gobi is prepared with cauliflower, potatoes, tomatoes, ginger, green chilies, coriander, tumeric and cumin. Cauliflower is awesome. I find it really absorbs flavors. Next, I’m digging the Channa Masal. They make it with garbonzo beans, onions and tomatoes. Another very simple dish, but most of the time simple is BETTER. The Aloo Saag and the Sal Daal also look cool; combined they’re made with spinach, potatoes and yellow lentils. Beans and greens, certainly a win-win combination! Lastly, the Palak Paneer looks interesting. It includes spinach leaves, tofu or paneer cubes, sautéed onion, garlic, ginger and green chilies. Okay, I’d take the tofu over the paneer and the sautéing is a concession, but I could live with it. It’d be a break from ALL the steam food I eat!

Overall, I REALLY dig Electric Karma! I think, like a lot of restaurants, the salads are your best bet. Good thing the salads are YUMMY! Plus, the vibe of Electric Karma certainly appeals to my Zen sensibilities. If I EVER get to Los Angeles, I’ll have to drop by.

Alright, you know what’s coming next. It’s your turn. Check out Electric Karma’s menu and let me know how you handle Eating to Live on the Outside. Just make a comment or send an email to diseaseproof@gmail.com. Until them, eat wisely. Om shanti.

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Steve - September 19, 2008 9:25 AM

Watch out for the "ghee" ie clarified butter at these types of restaurants. There is often a LOT of it. That was one of the food choices of the gentleman that you featured earlier this week (with the graphic video footage!).

Tamarind sauces and chutneys are a good concession I think, with usually just a little sugar to balance the rather tart tamarinds, and go good with plain veggies. Being of British origin, I can't imagine going too long without putting a dab of "HP Sauce" on my spuds or peas.
Cheers, Steve

Sara - September 20, 2008 10:32 PM

I'm afraid I disagree with some of your choices on this one.I used to love samosas and pakoras but they are a big no-no now.They are both dep-fried. Samosas are wrapped in dough and pakoras are usually battered. Also most curries are ful of ghee as Steve said or at least oil. I have not found an Indian restaurant I can eat in. If I had to eat there it would be salad- though those sound like small side dish salads, Or have them make the food special.

Chris - September 29, 2008 11:03 AM

Channa Masala is one of my favorite dishes to make at home, except I always add a boat load of spinach. The bonus of making it at home is it guarantees that there is no ghee.

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