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Dosa Stand in Wash Sq. Park/ AmyRuth's

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  • Hungryphil Jun 26, 2003 11:24 AM

Fellow hounds:
I had read awhile back about a stand that sells great dosas on the southern corner of Washington Square Park. I've gone a few times and scoured the area with no luck? Anyone else been or know about this stand and when it's there?

Also, wanna try AmyRuth's on 116th. Feedback, please.

Thanks

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  1. The Dosa cart is actually on the park's south side (outside the park)closer to the SW corner - somewhere around Sullivan & Thompson.

    10 Replies
    1. re: peter

      Do you know when it's usually there?

      1. re: Hungryphil
        b
        BigMoGreenberg

        I was there on Tuesday afternoon at 2pm and he was there for most of the day

        1. re: BigMoGreenberg

          I am indian and i just moved to nyc and was waiting to find a great dosa. nyc does not have great dosa restaurants like the bay area.

          for those that want to know about the dosa. The dosa is best described as the mother of all crepes

          the dosa originates from southern india and is eaten by millions of indians usually for breakfast or a evening snack.

          it is a large or very large crepe (either stuffed or plain and eaten with sambhar and coconut chutney.

          The crepe is made only after you order it and is made on a tawa (a large indian flattop cooking surface

          sambhar is a lentil curry made with indian spices vegetables and tamarind sauce.

          The crepe is best eaten by breaking it in small pieces and dipped in sambhar and coconut chutney (you can also get different kinds of chutney.remember to dip in both sauces at once

          there are over 100 kinds of dosa

          the most popular ones are:

          1. plain (no stuffing)
          2 masala (stuffed with potatoes and peas)
          3 egg (made with a layering of eggs
          4 paper plain (super sized crepe its huge maybe 2-3 feet depending on the place
          5 kheema (lamb stuffed) note since most dosa places are run by hindu people you may or may not get meat stuffed dosas

          6 rava dosa is made with special spices and may include onions
          7 mysore dosa orignates from the city of mysore and inlcudes a spicy chilly paste inside the crepe

          there are many variations of the dosa. if you like one you will like all

          1. re: Dosa Lover

            You should probably try the Dosa Hut branch on Lexington near 27th for the variety of dosas you mention (but no meat version here). It's better to go there after the lunch hours or on the weekends, as I tried to just order a dosa during lunch, but they insisted that the only thing available is their lunch buffet. Another suggestion in the same neighborhood is Dimple, but I haven't tried theirs, so hopefully someone will chime in who has.

            Otherwise, you should try some of the southern Indian places in Jackson Heights, Queens for dosas. I haven't tried them systematically, but they seem better than the Manhattan places I've tried. I'm not a big fan of Jackson Diner (mostly regarded as having gone way downhill) but their masala dosas are very good.

            For something slightly different, I recommend checking out Kati Roll Company on MacDougal. While I've been to the Dosa cart and have enjoyed the food, I prefer the kati rolls when I'm around Washington Square.

            1. re: Eric Eto

              Thanks I have been there. I totally love the place and even somedays after work get off the subway at 4th street just to eat at the kati roll place.i infact take home a couple of extra to eat later. they are that good

              try the beef and egg roll if you havent already. i always tell the guy to put extra green chutney in it.

              i swear its the mother of all wraps. I used to eat these kati rolls on the streets of calcutta as a kid and this guy makes them just as good.also the lady who owns the place is from calcutta

              my only regret is they dont make these with lamb/mutton here

              1. re: Dosa Lover

                You might also want to try Udippi Palace across the street from Dosa Hut. I think U.P.'s dosas are superior to Dosa Hut's. But, in an interesting move, U.P. has cloned itself. One restaurant is now strictly vegetarian, the other is Southern Indian, but with many meat dishes and only a small sample of dosas, uttaphams, iddlis, etc. If you want dosas, definitely do not go to the one that serves meat.

                But the new place offers southern Indian meat entrees heretofore unseen in Manhattan, as far as I know.

                1. re: Dave Feldman

                  Thanks for all the informative responses. I want to try Kati Roll after reading the comments here.

                  1. re: Hungryphil

                    I believe the dosa's at Pongal on Lexington between 27th and 28th are the best on Manhattan.

                    1. re: Hungryphil

                      kati roll is good, but roti roll up on 109 st and amsterdam is MUCH better, and quite a bit cheaper too, though they seem to raise their prices often.

                      their made on premises roti bread is far superior to kati rolls'.

          2. re: Hungryphil

            The Dosa vendor told me he is there every day but Sunday. However, like other street vendors he may not be there every single day.

            On my last trip the dosa was wonderful (try the ravi dosa) but the sambhar tasted like dal mixed with canned veg soup. I hope not! We should encourage him to do his best.

        2. The Dosa cart is actually on the park's south side (outside the park)closer to the SW corner - somewhere around Sullivan & Thompson.

          1 Reply
          1. re: peter

            It's not actually stand, more of a food cart. It (usually) has a large Parks Dept. umbrella on it. I believe the official name is NY Dosa. He usually gets going around 11:10 am, though I have no idea how late he stays there. And it's absolutely brilliant.

          2. What's a dosa ?

            3 Replies
            1. re: Langley

              A dosa is a deep fried fritter of Indian origin. Usualy filled with potatos, chick peas, or any combination of vegetables.

              1. re: BelueDog
                c
                Caitlin McGrath

                What you've described is a samosa. A dosa is a large crepe, often thin, with a lacy texture, usually made from rice or lentil flour or a combo of the two, wrapped around a filling; most common is spiced potatoes, but there are many variations. Usually served with sambar, a spicy, soupy lentil/vegetable concoction in which you can dip pieces of the dosa you've torn off.

                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                  Right you are. Too many Weise beers last night still half asleep. Sorry

            2. I don't think Amy Ruth's is at all noteworthy. I think people want to like it because it is cute and the managers are friendly, and because people who don't live in Harlem want to love a restaurant in Harlem. But the fried chicken is not really remarkable at all. Charles' is much better.

              1. I don't think Amy Ruth's is at all noteworthy. I think people want to like it because it is cute and the managers are friendly, and because people who don't live in Harlem want to love a restaurant in Harlem. But the fried chicken is not really remarkable at all. Charles' is much better.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Jenae R

                  I went to Amy Ruth's for the first time on Tuesday, and I'd agree that the meats were not all that, but I thought the sides were pretty near fabulous. Between us we tried fried okra (fresh! crispy! just needed a little salt), collards (not too sweet, smoky), mashed potatoes, mac cheese and black-eyed peas (garlicky), and I thought all of them were really top-rate.

                  And it really is a pleasant, friendly place.

                  1. re: Jenae R

                    i have to disagree here. i haven't tried too many items on amy-ruths menu, but the honey-dipped chicken is remarkable - fried chicken slathered in honey (which, i once heard but have not recently reconfirmed, is made from NYC honey from hives on the roof of the restaurant - can anyone confirm this?). give me some of that chicken and a side of yams and i'm in heaven.

                    that said, i live in the neighborhood and know there is other good soul food out there. amy-ruths probably does have a reputation that outstrips its reality and is probably over-touristed. its not my local go-to option for soul food (probably melbas or mannas, or the caribean place on 119th and 7th ave, would fit that bill depending on what i'm looking for)

                    (update: i just saw that this thread is very dated, though i am still curious about the rooftop honey query)