Over the years I have turned to Babe Blooz restaurant in Market Harborough as a constantly reliable source of good Indian food.
In times of exhaustion, ravenous hunger, the need to be cheered up and just the desire for a good old natter over spicy food, Babe Blooz has been the backdrop for many a meal with family and friends over the years.
The Indian and Bangladeshi restaurant in St Mary’s Road with its bright and modern décor and its out-of-the-ordinary menu, feels a bit different to many of its rivals.
Friendly, efficient waiters and good chefs are making it work very well.
So where better on a summer’s evening to meet up with Debs for a nice meal and a catch-up about life, work, this year’s weddings and the people we know.
I love Indian food so much that whenever I go to a good restaurant I tend to get a little over-excited about ordering and end up with considerably more food on the table than I can possibly finish in one sitting.
Then what happens is I fail to see the mismatch between the dishes before me and the amount I can reasonably consume and I’ll eat far too much and regret it.
Remembering however that the staff here are more than happy to package up anything you can’t manage, we crack on with the ordering. Conversation cannot be fully concentrated on until I’ve checked and chosen.
Crispy popadums and a selection of pickles are munched as we consider the menu. It has slightly changed since I was last at this restaurant, but most of the favourites are still there.
The dilemma of whether to go with the old favourite that you know you will love or risk trying something new soon crops up.
Both are available here so we end up doing a bit of both between us. Debs starts with the tandoori chicken, which was beautifully tender and benefiting from a spicy marinade, while I branched out and gave the begun pakora a try for the first time.
This starter is sliced aubergine cooked in batter with jeera , tamarind, coriander, garlic and ginger.
It was nicely crispy on the outside and pleasantly squidgy within.
Babe Blooz has an excellent section of Bangladeshi specialities. According to the blurb on their menu, their chef was cooking in Bangladesh for 14 years before coming to this country.
His experience comes out in the menu which has a range of dishes that you don’t commonly see.
There are a number of fish dishes. I’m tempted by several of these but in the end I decide to stick with my plan to try something completely new to me and opt for the Lamb Mintwala.
This is tandoori lamb cooked with mint and yogurt, ground coconut and almonds; all flavours that appeal to me. This was very tender and the flavour was complex with the mint coming through perfectly.
Debs is also a devotee of Babe Blooz and a particular fan of their paneer dishes, which she declares to be the best she has had.
She chose the Indian cheese dish that she loves and it was as good as ever. Some pilau rice and a perfectly sweet peshwari naan bread completed the meal.
They’ve always had the tradition of presenting customers with a rose at the end of the meal at Babe Blooz.
They also present me, on request, with the not inconsiderable amount of food I wasn’t able to finish all packaged up.
I’ll never learn to order the right amount.
FOOD: Very good
SERVICE: Quick and friendly
DISABLED ACCESS: Yes
PARKING: Car park nearby and on-street parking
COST OF OUR MEAL: £49.10
YVONNE’S STAR RATING: 7/10