FOOD REVIEW: Value for money at Akash, Tarring

Having received a menu for Akash through my front door, I thought it was about time to try the new Indian take-away restaurant in Tarring.

Looking at the menu before we phoned to place our order, the first thing we noticed was how inexpensive the majority of the dishes were.

The standard cost of take-away curries seems to vary between £5 to, in some cases, £9 or £10 for speciality dishes.

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At Akash, the menu is set out very clearly, with most of the curry dishes costing £5 or £5.50. The menu also has a classic curry section, with dishes such as a madras or bhuna costing just £4.

We opted for a chicken tikka jalfrezi (£5) and a lamb tikka pasanda (£5). To go with the curries we ordered a garlic nan (£2), a mushroom rice (£2.50) and some papadams £1). If you spend over £12 and collect your order, Akash throws in a free side dish, so we sampled the sag paneer, which usually costs £2.40. Considering how competitive the cost is, Akash by far exceeded our expectations. In fact, it was the best Indian take-away we have had a for a long time.

Both dishes were nicely spiced, with the pasanda delicately creamy with just a slight kick, while the jalfrezi, which was really spicy, had so much flavour.

The sauce had a large helping of sweet red peppers and onions, and the chicken tikka had a lovely distinctive barbecued taste.

The accompaniments were also delicious – the nan bread was fluffy and piping hot, the huge portion of mushroom rice was perfectly-cooked and the sag paneer was among one of the nicest we have tried. It had a lovely sweet taste from the spinach and onions, small chunks of cheese stirred through and a generous scattering of tomatoes.

The best part, however, was finishing our meal and not finding an oily residue left on the plates. Most Indian take-aways include an obligatory side order of grease, so I was very pleased to find this was not the case with Akash’s cooking.

In these penny-pinching times, it is nice to know you can order a take-way, without breaking the bank, and still enjoy a delicious, fresh, meal.

Akash, at 62 South Street, Tarring, is open seven days a week, from 5pm to 11pm. To place an order, call 01903 200071 or 217799.