June 2018 First Bite

An Indian restaurant discovery, a pinch of wisdom from Love Handle’s Ally Benedyk, and June food news.

New in Town

Indian & American Restaurant
4605 S. Harding St., 317-786-1022

You’re not likely to just stumble upon the restaurant tucked behind a busy southside truck stop at the intersection of I-465 and State Road 37 with the rather straightforward name Indian & American Restaurant. In fact, the only views from inside the fluorescent-lit joint are large swaths of asphalt dotted with telephone poles and the occasional semi-truck that rumbles past. But what the hole-in-the-wall lacks in ambience it makes up for with authentic Indian food that is cooked to order (so plan for a leisurely meal). Curry is far from the only option on the menu. Start off with pakora, or onions fried in chickpea batter—bite-size scoops of onion, potato, and veggies are infused with spicy heat and then lightly breaded and fried for a crisp outside and warm inside. Slurp down creamy tikka masala replete with cilantro, jasmine rice, and tender, juicy chunks of lamb or chicken. Dig into the savory goat bhuna infused with a surprisingly fresh dash of mint, or curl up with aloo matar—a lemon–pea soup brimming with a delightful medley of crisp, fresh vegetables.

Pinch of Wisdom

“Instead of graham crackers, my cheesecake has a salted cookie crust. I just crush some Nilla Wafers and salt them up with brown butter. It stays really crunchy.”
Ally Benedyk, co-owner of Love Handle, which moved to Mass Ave over the winter, adding an expanded menu and dinner hours

The Feed

  • The Indianapolis Cultural Trail now offers walking and biking culinary tours of Fountain Square and Fletcher Place led by Indy food experts.
  • New Zealand–based BurgerFuel has its eye on Mass Ave for its second Indianapolis location.