Aaheli, Indian restaurant in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

 Aaheli, Indian restaurant in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Aaheli, Indian restaurant in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Opened six years ago, Aaheli ("pure" in sanskrit), located in Hell's Kitchen, is a small restaurant with a forgettable decor, but a delicious menu, serving dishes from North and South India (for instance, they have masala dosa, these Lentil and rice flour crêpes stuffed with potato masala).

 Papadum at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Papadum at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

  Papadum at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Papadum at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Like most of the Indian restaurants I went to, it all starts with papadum, these large round crispy crackers that are so addictive, especially when dipped in tamarind or mint sauce. 

  Mango lassi at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Mango lassi at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

I also ordered a mango lassi. Yes, I used to order sweet lassi in the past, but I have to say that mango lassi has become my favorite. The second purpose for ordering lassi is that it cools me down, whenever the food has too much heat...

For the appetizer, we went for our all time favorite: vegetable samosa. 

 Vegetable samosa   at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Vegetable samosa  at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

It was very good, not greasy at all and not spicy, tasty for sure with a deliciously flakey shell. 

Jodi, who loves mushrooms, decided to go for the Mushroom Matar, a first as she usually goes for the chana masala or saag paneer, but she loves mushrooms and was curious. 

 Mushroom matar   at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Mushroom matar  at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

This dish is made of green peas, potatoes and mushrooms in thick and rich sauce. It was delicious, but a bit spicy, and we forgot to ask not spicy when we ordered.

 Rice pulao   at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Rice pulao  at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

 Naan   at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Naan  at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Even eating with the rice or fresh naan did not help (but do not forget I had a lassi to do the trick). Fortunately, the chicken tikka masala I picked did not have any heat. 

 Chicken Tikka Masala  at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Chicken Tikka Masala at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

It was a great dish: creamy, with a perfectly cooked chicken. I love that dish that I find very comforting. 

To end the meal, we got tempted by our favorite Indian desserts: gulab jamun that are these fried cheese balls dipped in a very sweet syrup made with honey.

 Gulab Jamun  at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Gulab Jamun at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

The second dessert was kheer that is basically rice pudding. 

 Kheer  at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Kheer at Aaheli in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY

Both were delicious (sweet for sure) and a nice ending after a very good meal. Would I go back to Aaheli? Sure and next time, I will try the dosa!

Enjoy (I did)!

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