I visited Spice Junction for the first time a couple of months back but as I turned up towards the end of the meal and mostly helped to finish the leftovers (so classy I know!) I didn’t really have enough to write a proper blog post on. My return visit last week however gave me plenty to write about, especially as everything we had was so good! My friend G had raved and raved about the Kerala fried prawns, little prawns marinated in spices and then deep fried. He was not wrong about how good these were, we ordered a portion to eat while we looked at the menu and then a second (there were 4 of us!) almost immediately afterwards.
We also had a portion of Kozhuva, something we were given complimentary last time I was there as the owner wanted us to try them with our beer – he called them the perfect snack to have with a drink and he wasn’t wrong! Kozhuva are small anchovies, apparently this is a popular Southern Indian snack. Like the prawns, they are coated in a spice mix and then fried until crispy. They are absolutely delicious and a great start to a meal or on their own with a chilled beer.
We ordered a few more dishes to share amongst us, a fish curry, some masala prawns, a green pea curry and a mutton and coconut stir fry along with a few of their special “non greasy” parotta and some plain rice. We hadn’t been so keen on the fish curry we had tried before (I can’t remember which one we ordered last time) this one was definitely better but the real stars were the masala prawns and the mutton and coconut stirfry.
The prawns they use at Spice Junction are quite small but very tasty and the chef cooks them absolutely perfectly. I generally don’t order prawn curries as I find they can get over cooked easily and get “wooly” and chewy but every preparation of prawns I have tried here has still been succulent and tender. The mutton was really interesting, the texture of the mutton with the chunks of coconut really worked well together and the meat wasn’t too strong in flavour which I was happy about as I am not the biggest red meat eater around.
A real surprise and completely delicious! We were enjoying ourselves so much we ordered another prawn and another pea curry as this was also proving popular with the rest of the table. The second pea curry was even better than the first; the peas still had a little crunch to them which I haven’t experienced before. With a “bucket” of beer I think the bill came to around $40 each which was perfectly reasonable.
I can’t for the life of me understand why Muthus’ (which is next door) is always so busy when Spice Junction is much quieter, I was not particularly impressed with Muthus’ but cannot speak highly enough about Spice Junction. Well worth a trip to Little India for and I shall definitely go back for some more of the fried prawns and Kozhuva sooner rather than later! Apologies for the TERRIBLE photos but I wanted to show you what we had even though the flash does the food no justice at all.