Finally Tracking Down the Elusive Sami’s Dosa Cart
For awhile I feared that Sami’s Dosa Cart was a figment of my imagination. I first read about it in a tip from Lunch’er Adam Prato, but after multiple failed dosa excursions to 55th and Broadway I gave up. Fortunately another tip lead us to the cart’s current location on 39th and Broadway.
The menu is 100% vegetarian and has been evolving. Currently he offers dosas, uthappam, samosas, kati rolls, and a rotating menu of rice dishes: lemon rice, tamarind rice (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday) and vegetable biryani (Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday).
It came with a small cup of sambar (vegetable stew) and spicy coconut chutney. The dosa, sambar and chutney all had a bit of heat to them. They weren’t overwhelmingly hot, but had a pleasant spicy kick. Still the totally spice adverse should be warned.
On a repeat visit I tried out the onion chili uthappam ($5), which for the uninitiated is another type of Southern Indian pancake. It was a cold day when I dropped by and Sami warned me that the uthappam takes longer than a dosa, but I was willing to wait. I watched as Sami prepared the uthappam and it seemed like he used the same amount of batter, but in a higher concentration so the pancake had a smaller circumference, but was thicker than a dosa. Then he added raw onions which cooked up as the uthappam cooked. The whole process took around 10 minutes. The end result, which was also served with sambar and coconut chutney, tasted something akin to Indian spiced onion rings. Definitely a dish that I’d get again.
The kati rolls from the cart are vegetables only and pre-rolled and reheated (most places heat the paratha then add the filling). They seemed to be filled with carrot and onion, almost like an Indian spiced egg roll. If you’re a hardcore egg roll and Indian food fan, this kati roll might be for you, if not, I’d suggest sticking to the rest of the menu.
Sami himself is very friendly and a terrific cook. It’s carts like his that make midtown an awesome place to work. If you don’t want to wait in the cold, you can pre-order by calling Sami at 347-965-3353. (Amazingly enough, he appears to be open today.)
- Nothing on the menu is over $5
- Sami is super friendly and a terrific cook
- Lots of good options for vegetarians
THE – (What somebody who doesn’t like this place would say)
- I don’t like vegetarian food
- I’m on a low carb diet so no thanks on the potatoes, rice and flour.
Sami Dosa Cart, 39th & Broadway