there is a
house estate for sale in summit, nj whose listing price is 10.5 million dollars. the place has 17 rooms, 6 of which are bedrooms, a pool and countless other crap amenities.
which begs the question: what does one DO with 17 rooms, exactly? are you constantly flying in overnight guests? do you have 5 kids and don't particularly ever want to see them? do pets get their own rooms?
seriously... any ideas?
well, i suppose the 70 degree weather in january couldn't last forever.
yesterday morning i went downstairs to feed my cat and wanted nothing more than to just crawl back into bed for another hour instead of having to go to work. then i looked out my window and saw this:
all of a sudden one day, i looked up and the leaves had all changed color. i always loved autumn with its orange and reds and yellows, and i meant to seriously take a trek out and around town and post a lot of photos.
then one day i looked up and the leaves were already mostly on the ground. yet it's nearly 70 degrees today...
i did manage to capture a few moments somewhere in between.
these two were taken near the millburn train station:
this weekend i had dinner at dabbawalla on springfield ave.
i've been meaning to try the place since it opened in the summer, but somehow never got around to it.
a 'dabbawalla' loosely translates to 'lunchpail man' - in india, the dabbawallas carry homemade lunches (cooked by housewives) to city office workers. it's a simple concept, but according to the wikipedia entry more than 175,000 to 200,000 lunches get moved every day by an estimated 4,500 to 5,000 dabbawalas, all with an extremely small nominal fee and with utmost punctuality.
Forbes gave a six sigma performance rating for the precision of dabbawalas, meaning there is only one mistake in every 6,000,000 deliveries.
as a huge fan of indian food, i was a bit reluctant to try what at first seems like a place focused more on sleek good looks and design than good old-fashioned homecooking. in my experience a lot of places that look really good are not necessarily the places with the best food. but, i've tried a few things from the adjoining bakery and wasn't disappointed (though sadly, it focuses more on french desserts, but i guess summit isn't ready for indian sweets).
eventually my curiosity and craving for indian food won out.
we started with the house salad (pictured above). it arrived in a crusty shell and looked a bit small at first for the $5.25 pricetag, although very pretty. the portion was more than enough however, even shared between two people. it's a basic salad dressed up with indian spices, and quite good.
there were a few things on the menu that looked good, so i asked our server for recommendations, and we ended up with a paneer saagwalla (which is not on the menu), and a chili chicken, along with a roti (the flat bread that you usually dish up the food with). the dishes come out in dabbas, which is a nice touch, in addition to making sharing a lot easier.
paneer is indian homemade cheese, it's translated as cottage cheese on the menu but it's much firmer than that and used in a lot of vegetarian dishes. the saagwalla is a spinach sauce. i would highly recommend the dish especially to people don't like very spicy foods or some of the more typical indian spices. i'm not sure why it's not on the menu, though there is a chicken saagwalla available.
the chili chicken came with a fried rice and was also not very spicy, though that was easily fixed with a generous dollop of the chili sauce accompanying it.
both dishes were good, though if i had to make a choice i would probably go with the paneer saagwalla.
by the time we were done we were both stuffed and had a little leftover to take home, but i really wanted to try dessert, so we ordered the dabbawalla kheer, a very liquidy milk pudding made with vermicelli, almonds and raisins. it wasn't bad, but i think i would prefer something different next time.
overall we were both very satisfied - not to mention extremely full! though a little pricier than most of the indian places i've tried (entrees run about $14-20), the atmosphere, service and overall experience are well-worth it. it's a nice, non-threatening place to take out that friend you've been trying to introduce to indian food to no avail, yet still satisfy the indian foodies in your group.
now the only question is when can i make it back there for brunch so i can try some of their dosas....
when i first moved to summit, i made a promise to myself, that i would not become one of THOSE people.
you know, the ones that are running frantically to make their train because otherwise they have to wait 30 minutes for the next one.
well, tonight i broke that promise.
but i did, however, manage to also make it to the 7:25 express train out of penn station (first stop summit, woohoo) just as the doors were closing on me. though the conductor nearly gave me a heart attack when he misread my ticket and told me i was on the wrong train.
i have not been keeping up this journal the way i'd like. i'll have to rectify that in the next few days with a real entry.