Sunday, September 20, 2015

True Indian Tastes at Desi By Nature

Talk about finding a hidden gem!  If you are a fan of Indian food - or if you have never eaten Indian food, this is the place to go.  Desi by Nature is in a non-descript strip center on Fowler Avenue in Tampa. 

The lunch concept is fantastic. Order what you want, as much as you want, and as many times as you want for one low price!  It's simple - you are given a menu with the food choices and a description. Order what you want, and order it again, and again, or try something different.
We worked our way right down the menu and tasted everything! Yes, we were stuffed.

Bhel Puri is puffed rice mixed with onions, cilantro, mint, and tamarind chutney. I thought this sounded very strange, but it was very delicious.

Samosas are seasoned potato turnovers that are fried to perfection. 

The gem is on the inside!

Next up - chicken kabobs marinated in yogurt and spices, and cooked in a clay oven.
It's time to move on to the entrees!  Chloe bhature is curried chickpeas and puffy white flour bread.  Hours later and I am still thinking about this bread. Wow!
Tender pieces of chicken in a creamy fenugreek sauce is Methi chicken.
Yes, we are still eating and there is more food yet to come!  I was dining with a group of people - do not even begin to think that I could have eaten all of this by myself!!

Butter chicken is simmered in a smooth tomato gravy, tempered with fresh cream and butter.
Somehow I missed snapping  a photo of the yellow lentils, but I can assure you that they were scrumptious.  One of my favorite dishes of the day (just by a smidge) was the saag paneer. Spinach studded with cubes of cottage cheese.  I heard someone say that the cheese was homemade too, but I didn't verify that.

Of course, we are our fill of naan. Plain and garlic. 
I need more garlic naan now!

Dessert is reminiscent of rice pudding, but it is made with vermicelli and cooked in whole milk with saffron, almonds and raisins.

My drink choice was Mango lassi which is a yogurt based drink with mango and a dash of cardamom. ($3).  This was heavenly!

Desi by Nature is an unparalleled Indian Restaurant.  The owners are warm and welcoming, the servers are attentive and everything is clean!
Desi by Nature is located at 1251 East Fowler Avenue.  The lunch price is $9.95 (unbelievable) Monday through Friday and $12.95 on Saturday and Sunday.  Desi is open every day except Tuesday for lunch from 11:30-3:00 and dinner starting at 5pm.

Questions, call 813-972-7400. Follow them on Twitter and Facebook.

Thanks for reading! Tampa Bay Afternoon Delight.


Monday, September 14, 2015

Tasty Seafood Sandwiches and more at J & K Trappman's Seafood Shack

If you have headed north on Seminole Boulevard, just past 110th Avenue, you've probably seen this sign.   All these years I thought it was just a seafood market.  Boy, was I wrong!!

I stopped in today to get some smoked mullet ($5.99 lb).  Once I was there, I decided to go ahead and have lunch.  I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of things that you could order. Yes, there is a $2.99 fried tilapia sandwich, or $3.99 for a grilled tilapia sandwich.  The fish sandwich selections also include grouper ($9.99) [grilled $10.99], smoked salmon ($4.99), and seared tuna ($7.99).  There us also a shrimp Poboy ($6.99), fried chicken sandwich ($2.99 or $3.99 grilled), and an Angus beef burger ($5.99).

As always, I couldn't decide because the other side of the menu shows the different way that you can order shrimp. Order them by the 1/2 pound ($6.99) or full pound ($13.99) and have them prepared fried, buffalo, steamed with garlic butter and seasonings, or grilled.

Sides are available as well. French fries ($1.50), coleslaw ($1.50) or 4 hushpuppies for a dollar.

I ordered the fried chicken sandwich and a half pound of buffalo shrimp and went outside to the picnic tables.
Soon after, my food was ready!
The anticipation of what's inside!!
The fried food was delicious!  The batter - or breading - was soooo  light, that it was hard to tell that there was anything there. I hate having to pick off mounds of batter or breading!!

J & K Trappman's Seafood Shack is a great place to purchase seafood.  Shrimp, whole fish, mussels, and a whole bunch more!

Plus, they have everything right there that you might need to cook it!

J & K Trappman's Seafood is opening from 9am to 9pm Monday through Saturday. Grill hours are 11am to 8:30 pm.

Bottled beer is also available.
Wave goodbye to the man who prepared your food! (Not actually sure if he was in there or not!)
Any additional questions, give them a call 727-392-2700.  Tell them Tampa Bay Afternoon Delight sent you!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Goodness Gracious - there's a gyro!

I have driven by this restaurant at least a thousand times.  Today, I stopped - and I am glad that I did.

Athenian Gyros and Chicken has been serving food over 30 years in Pinellas Park.

Upon entering, I was immediately greeted and welcomed.  My thoughts were to have a Greek salad, but once I saw the gyro meat rotating in the back, I knew I had to have a gyro.  The meal included fries and a drink for $8.99.

I selected a booth and within a few minutes, my food was ready. 
I didn't even have that much time to look at all of the trinkets that were for sale in the store!

Hot, fresh, crispy fries.  The gyro looks a little messy - and it was - messily delicious!  A few of the pieces of meat were nice and crispy. You know it is not out of a package when the pieces are all different sizes and different crispness.  And, yes, that is freshmade tzaziki sauce!
While I was eating, another couple came in.  They were asked if it was there first time there and the man replied that they come from Orlando for their doctors appointments and everytime they come over, they stop in there for food.  I thought to myself, "I LIVE in this city and have never been here and they drive from Orlando to eat here!"  (They come for the appointments, but could really eat anywhere!)

The inside of the restaurant was very clean.  There are several booths and tables, but nothing really for a large party.  I would get it to go for a large group. 

Athenian Gyros and Chicken is located at 5320 Park Boulevard in Pinellas Park.   They are open Monday through Sunday from 11am until 9pm. Questions or call ahead orders - 727-544-5740.  Visit the website for more information.