Edison, NJ 08820
- Cost: $$
- Parking: Public Lot
- Take Out: Yes
June 24, 2012
To experience the vegetarian cuisine of South India as it might be served in Bangalore, head to Swagath Gourmet on Oak Tree Road.
You are immediately served a small silver bowl of warm rasam, a sweet and spicy tamarind-flavored soup. The snack-sized dishes on the menu include vada (fritters), idli (steamed rice cakes), and dosas (thin rice and lentil crepes) with potato and onion fillings. All are served with sambar, a spicy lentil stew, and at least one chutney, typically coconut and chili. Uttapam – thick rice and lentil pancakes – are also good for dipping. Order a thali platter to sample a number of different vegetable preparations, dips and breads. The intensely spiced rice dishes are also worth the trip. Puliyogare, a rice specialty blended with tamarind and 14 herbs and spices is one of the most powerful plates of rice I’ve ever tasted. At Swagath Gourmet, be prepared for a spice level aimed at Indian palates. Keep the yogurt dips and drinks (lassi) close by to tame the heat when necessary.
Swagath Gourmet is in the same strip mall as Desi Galaxy and the Apna Bazar Cash & Carry grocery store on the Westbound side of Oak Tree Road. The dining room is comfortable and no-frills. Every dish is served, literally, on a silver platter.