Desi Truck Brings Back Haleem, Adds Puri Bhaji To The Menu
While walking on 50th street between 6th and 7th avenues, I couldn’t help but stop at the Desi Food Truck, because according to a menu sign taped to the window haleem, the soup Clay liked so much last year and an Indian rarity in New York, has returned! Also advertised on the window was Puri Bhaji. Sounds like lunch to me…
I ordered a small 8 oz soup for $4 (the 12 oz is $6). The soup is thick, rich and spicy. The educational sign on the truck says it’s made from four kinds of lentils, wheat and barley, making it low in fat and high in fiber and protein. If nutrition is the kind of thing you consider at lunchtime, this soup may be for you. Unlike Clay’s soup from last year, mine had plenty of conspicuous chunks of dark meat chicken. So, although it was good last year, it’s even better now! The owner asked me how soon I would be consuming his soup. “It’s better fresh,” he said and advised me not to reheat it in my office microwave if I could help it. Since I would be eating it soon enough, he squeezed a little lemon juice on top, sprinkled shredded fresh ginger and fried onions. If all soups tasted like this, I would get soup for lunch more often.
The fried Puri Bhaji (2 for $4 or 4 for $6) are a perfect compliment to the soup. Puri is an unleavened Indian bread that puffs up when fried. These airy pockets come with Bhaji, or a thick, spiced potato sauce on the side for delicious dipping. It also comes with a garlicky condiment that I might recommend skipping if your post-lunch plans include lots of meetings. But if your afternoon is clear, go for it!