Review: Herb - The Kerala Herbal Cuisine Restaurant, Leicester ★★★★★

Review: Herb – The Kerala Herbal Cuisine Restaurant, Leicester ★★★★★

A short hop from Leicester railway station, Herb serving up top-notch veggie and vegan food, Kerala-style!

In town for a weekend at the Leicester Comedy Festival, we found 90 minutes to fit in a belt-bothering trip to Herb – a veggie & vegan oasis amongst the ubiquitous meat-focused high street offerings.

In the words of Master Chef Ramdas Krishna, Herb is ‘trying to reproduce the local taste of Kerala Cuisine with the help of Kerala born and bred chefs. At Herb we pay the utmost attention to the principles of healthy cooking and incorporating the healing component of herbs and spices in our cuisine to our guests’.

Review: Herb - The Kerala Herbal Cuisine Restaurant, Leicester ★★★★★ 1

Healthy cooking, perhaps, but have no fear that flavour is sacrificed here – on the contrary, the flavours served up are quite extraordinary, and even the pre-meal snacks of crunchy Murukku, Pappada Vara and Nentharaka Varuthathu, accompanied by a trio of homemade chutneys and pickles, blow most UK Indian restaurant experiences out of the water.

Completely incapable of choosing from a menu which seemed to feature one must-have after another, we got stuck into the Vegan Pre-Theatre Thali – though we couldn’t resist ordering a Nair Masala Dosa ‘on the side’.

Review: Herb - The Kerala Herbal Cuisine Restaurant, Leicester ★★★★★ 2

The Thali was a thing of tastebud-titilating delight. There was spinach, and potatoes, and mushrooms, and okra, and dhal, and cauliflower, each with distinctive spice levels and flavours, as well as a huge, crispy onion bhaji. A generous serving of rice a bread to mop up the variety of sauces, and we were in food heaven! Frankly, this would have plenty of food, but the Nair Masala Dosa was also a thing of wonder – a golden triangle bulging with potato masala, and brushed inside with red chutney and butter. This is glorious gluttony and its most delicious, a real plate-mopping treat. Reader, we finished it all!

We’ll be back – there are so many other dishes we want to try, from the Madhura Kizhanghu Varattiyathu (sweet potato sautéed with chilli, onion, mustard, ginger, garlic, curry leaves and tomato sauce) to the Jackfruit Ularthiyathum Kadalya Curryum (aashed raw jackfruit cooked with coconut, garlic, green chillies cumin, curry leaves, mustard seeds and turmeric), to the Kallappam (rice and coconut soft pancake with a hint of garlic). Literally every item on the menu sounds amazing!

Review: Herb - The Kerala Herbal Cuisine Restaurant, Leicester ★★★★★ 3