Spice it up | Masala
Recently we dived into the Indian cuisine and visited the Masala in Zurich, directly at Stauffacher. Masala? Sounds familiar: the definition of masala is a spice mixture that has been ground into a powder or paste used for cooking Indian food, or a dish flavored with this powder. A paste made of cumin and other ground spices is an example of masala. A chicken dinner made with masala spices is an example of masala. Indian food is diverse, flavorful, colorful, and unique and we were ready to taste it all.
Masala’s interior is very oriental: Cream white walls lined with tasteful decorations. There are also paintings such as elephants with Indian influences on the wall and a chandelier on the ceiling. From the outside, the Masala seems rather inconspicuous, but as soon as one enters the restaurant, one really dives into the Indian world.
The menu offers a huge selection of North Indian dishes. Many of them were still unknown to us. But that was exactly what attracted us! The best way to enjoy an Indian restaurant is with a sense of adventure...Nevertheless as a first starter we decided on something simple, already familiar to us: Samosa. They were extremely crispy on the outside and soft and tasty on the inside. The chutneys were a fantastic match. Furthermore we went for “Pakoda” which is a dish with fried vegetables and Indian spices. Delicious!
It took us a little longer to pick the main courses. The menu offers a wide choice of chicken, lamb and vegetarian dishes; not that easy to pick one! After a while we opted for Murgh Korma. Murgh Korma is a delicious Indian curry also known as “Chicken Korma”. Our Korma consisted of Chicken pieces in a mild sauce with cashew nuts, almonds, coconut milk and cream refined with saffron. In combination with the Cheese and Garlic Naan it was just incredibly tasty.
We also wanted to try a vegetarian dish, that’s why we went for Chole (Chana) Masala. Chole chana masala is one of the most popular curry dishes from India. In fact in north India no wedding or party is complete until you have chole masala on the menu. But what exactly is it? Chickpeas, cooked with onions, tomatoes and lots of spices too! Although it was almost a bit hot for my taste (I'm very sensitive when it comes to spiciness), it convinced me! The chickpeas were crunchy and not overcooked. We have never eaten anything similar before, especially as we often order meat dishes. Maybe, in future, we should eat vegetarian options more often...and Masala would be a great spot to try more of them.
As already mentioned, we ordered Garlic (Lasuni-Naan) and Cheese Naan in addition to the main dishes. An absolute must for us when we go out for Indian food. Isn’t it one of the best things ever to just dip the Naan into the creamy sauces of the mains? Mouthwatering!
Especially the Cheese Naan was one of the best we ever had. Super cheesy, crispy and fluffy on the inside. We couldn’t get enough of it!
If you want to embark on a culinary journey through Northern India and perhaps discover new dishes, the Masala is definitely worth a visit. It represents Indian cuisine exactly as it is: Spicy, rich, flavourful and diverse.
Starters between CHF 7.50 and CHF 25.50 (platter)
Mains between CHF 28.50 and CHF 32
Masala Stauffacherstrasse 27 8004 Zürich
Phone: 0041 44 240 03 61