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Sep 9, 2009 02:46 PM

Indian Hakka Chinese - Calgary

I'm intrigued by Indian Chinese (Hakka) dishes (developed by Chinese cooks living in India), but have never tried it.

Has anyone eaten at Karma deep in the southeast ... or a place on 36th Street NE called "Hakka Indian & Chinese Food" -- even though it appears the signs/banner for its previous incarnation, a Japanese place called Taketomi Village, are still hanging there.


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  1. I haven't tried either, but I've seen Karma and been intrigued by it. So I'm interested as well! Taketomi Village is gone? I thought it was really popular for some reason.

    1. I don't really understand, the Hakka people of western China do not have anything to do with India. Some of them have migrated there but their cuisine and culture were not influenced by India. We have a couple of Hakka Restaurants here in the San Francisco area and there is nothing Indian about them.

      12 Replies
      1. re: chefj

        A little further in Wikipedia:
        "In places such as India, and other places of Indian diaspora overseas, Hakka Cuisine is erroneously known as something that bears little to no resemblance to actual traditional Hakka dishes. This variation of "Hakka Cuisine" is in reality, mostly Indian Chinese cuisine, falsely known as Hakka since many Chinese restaurant owners in India were of Hakka origin. "

        1. re: sharonanne

          That Explains it. It actually isn't Hakka Cuisine.

          1. re: chefj

            Here in Vancouver (and many other cities), Indian-Chinese cuisine is called "Desi Chinese" and "Hakka" is a Regional Chinese cuisine of the Hakka people.

            1. re: fmed

              So whats with the "Hakka Indian & Chinese Food" in the original post?

              1. re: chefj

                Because for whatever reason, Indian "Chinese" food is often referred to as "Hakka." You might as well complain about aboriginal North Americans being called "Indian" or about "curry powder." It's just a term that's become used. fmed, you might not see it in Van but you sure as hell do in Toronto and in many other cities.

                There is a tiny Hakka menu at Green Chili and at Surya too. I've had "chili chicken" at the Surya buffet and can't say I care for it.

                1. re: John Manzo

                  I am not complaining just curious about the nomenclature. These boards are meant for discussion.

                  1. re: chefj

                    It is called "Hakka" cuisine in the Indian restaurateurs who move here called it "Hakka".

                  2. re: John Manzo

                    Yes in Toronto it is called "Hakka". "Desi", I believe (but only intuitively) is a newer term when the purveyors of "Hakka" food from India moved to other parts of the world.

                    1. re: fmed

                      "Desi" refers to anything Indian.

                      1. re: John Manzo

                        Yes - it really just means "countryman" or "compatriot." I was referring to how it is used in this context.

              2. re: chefj

                It is Hakka -- just not traditional Hakka. In their cooking, the Hakka people of India used ingredients that were available to them (including Indian spices) and created this unique cuisine. I grew up with this type of food, but we also ate traditional Hakka food.

            2. Green Chili Has a few "hakka" dishes but I didn't like the one we tried so I can't recommend them. I've enjoyed other dishes from Green Chili though others haven't.

              1 Reply
              1. re: sharonanne

                Its basically a Chinese resataurant with an Indian Chinese Menu as well . The Japanese outside should be really changed by the owenr, there is nothing Japanese on the menu. The Indian Chinese is very good. Defenitely worth a try and very reasonable. We eat there at least once a month. I would decribe it as Chinese suaces with indian spices. The Manchurian Noodles and Hakka Chicken are personal favourites.

                Hakka is very commin in Indian and originated from the local migrant Chinese population. At Taketomi on any given weekend there are lots of Indian folks.

              2. We do Karma take-out about once a month. This restaurant has gone from average food and 1 hour take-out waiting times to the best Indian restaurant in Calgary and 15-20 min take-out turnover.

                They add real "heat" the their dishes, if you order vindaloo you are getting a spicy hot dish - like it was meant to be - not a watered down version for us North Americans. This alone sets them apart from everyone else in Calgary.

                As for the Hakka portion of the menu, I highly recommend the Prawn Chili - great stuff!!

                1. We had chili chicken on the buffet at Green Chili a couple of Sundays ago- NOW I get the appeal! It was excellent, spicy and sweet, I could have eaten a plate of it on its own. Much better than the version I'd had at Surya.