Amma’s CanteenIndian subcontinent
Passionate Keralan-Indian-Brit fusion. A great place to eat can make the back end of nowhere worth visiting – and (largely) Keralan restaurant Amma’s Canteen, on the outskirts of Chorlton, feels like a destination. Located opposite Southern Cemetery on Barlow Moor Road, the area is defiantly residential, yet with its jaunty trompe de l’oeil wallpaper and feature filaments, Amma’s is a joy. Keralan-Brit chef Saju Ravindran cooks with a rainbow of freshly toasted spices. Highlights include kidney bean and spinach vegan dosa with coconut chutney and sambar ‘soup’ and spiced sundal (fried chickpeas pocked with tiny gems of fresh coconut and green mango). Stuffed kozhukattai showcase the best in Indo-Chinese fusion, combining silken dim sum with peas, carrots and a dollop of ‘poor mans relish’ made from buttery shallots, smoked chilli and tamarind. Delicious, street-cart inspired food abounds: lentil doughnuts are smothered yoghurt and fresh ginger, while crispy okra (Porucha Vendaka) come stuffed with nuts and a dollop of spicy ‘hummus’ on the side. Chilli Paneer is a dark, sticky revelation and the slow-cooked smoked garlic and mint spring lamb curry comes with a homemade flaky porantha. Softly poached golden plantain with a palm sugar glace and vanilla ice cream is a wonderful variant on banana custard. Wines are simple, and there are a few house beers: Amma’s is all about the food.