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tamatanga, the cornerhouse, nottingham.

an inspiring menu of modern indian cuisine with fresh and tasty ingredients, a colourful environment and friendly staff along the way; this urban indian canteen is the perfect mix of authentic indian flavours with a modern influence. 

i would go as far as to say this is one of my favourite restaurants and somewhere i always visit when i'm in nottingham - i have so many pictures on my phone of dishes i've had there over the years! so since i met up with my friend grace there last weekend, i thought it was about time i shared my love of the place.

i was surprised to see they had rebranded their menus and hoped that not much had changed. luckily it hadn't - just a bit of a colour change on the menu and a few new dishes. the old faithful eating kit still made an appearance :)

as you can see by the menu and their social media channels, tamatanga has a warm and chatty approach to dining whilst still keeping sharp and professional. this quirky customer service style is a running theme throughout the restaurant and staff which i enjoy every time i return. i usually dislike making comparisons, but you could say it is a little like the indian answer to wagamama - large communal tables with sizzling fresh food that comes out as and when its ready.

for starters, they have a starter, snacks and sides menu which can also be ordered in the style of tapas. so if you like a bit of variety you could order 3 for £13 or 5 for £20 and have a fewto share. i went with my favourite ever prawn tempura with tamatanga chutney (£5.45) whilst grace chose the paneer kebab (£4.45). we then realised we mightaswell pick three for the £13 and threw in the crispy chilli calamari (£4.95). i cooled down with a refreshing coconut and pineapple juice whilst i awaited the fast approaching feast. 

this tempura is out of this world and i have it every. time. the prawns are absolutely ginormous and are always so juicy and well seasoned. the paneer had a yummy charred edge with soft inside which i can't seem to ever recreate at home - the mint and coriander chutney went so well with it so will have to have a go at that too. the calamari was delicious - i think would have worked well with a yoghurt based dip rather than the chilli though. 

for main, i went for tamatanga salmon from the tandoor plates section. i was a total creature of habit i'm afraid since i have this every time i come. it comes in at £11.45 and you pick to either have naans, tamatanga chips or rice with your main. the naans are cooked fresh and i actually cheekily requested garlic and coriander for this one - although on the menu is either garlic or coriander.

cooked in a clay tandoor oven, the salmon is a satisfying medium heat with flavours similar to a tikka - harmonising with the mild daal that comes with it. despite the bite of the charred exterior, the salmon within retains succulence and taste. 

grace chose two of the veggie sides (£4.25) and had them as a main; paneer makhni and bhindi do piaza. the makhni is a tomato based sauce whilst the other dish was okra tossed in caramelised onions and spices. you can have these as a main for £8.45 too.

we were sufficiently stuffed! i always over order when i go to tamatanga as i just want everything and the portions are already so generous that i really should learn. really, i'm just pleased i posted about it this time as i always mean to. just an excuse to go back really!

another great dining idea which i really want to try is the thali plates - a selection of dishes including their chosen specials + two of your favourites along with poppadoms, daal, raita, rice, naan and salad. great for trying everything if you don't want to over do it! next time i go i'm going to try out the tandoori paneer salad... or balchao prawn curry... or lamb choka... yeah i really need to make up my mind!

find out more at www.tamatanga.com  

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