Chef Cindhura Reddy's Italian cooking has earned plenty of attention at Spuntino
, the cozy Highland eatery at 2639 West 32nd Avenue that she runs with her husband, Elliot Strathmann. Earlier this year, she even received a Best Chef Mountain award nomination from the James Beard Foundation
. But when it comes to comfort, Reddy turns not to pasta or polenta, but to the Indian cuisine of her childhood.
For a brief time, Reddy shared her South Indian recipes with appreciative Denver diners at Namkeen, a counter-service eatery inside Zeppelin Station. Namkeen has been closed for more than a year now, but Reddy says troubled times call for comfort, so she's bringing back some of her favorite Namkeen dishes for one night (and possibly more) at Spuntino.
A sampling of Namkeen's menu from its time at Zeppelin Station.
Courtesy of Namkeen
Reddy and Strathmann are making plans to slowly reopen their dining room to limited capacity, but in the meantime, they're still heavily focused on creating a great takeout experience for customers. Reddy says South Indian cuisine travels well, so today (Tuesday, May 26), the restaurant is launching an online menu for pre-order and pick-up (or delivery within a limited radius) between 3 and 8 p.m. on Sunday, May 31. The $60 special will feed two or three adults the following:
2 samosas with mint cilantro and date chutneys
4 pieces whole wheat roti
2 pieces butter + garlic naan
1 quart saffron jeera rice
1 pint each: chana masala, methi chicken, lamb + beef keema
(Vegetarian: 1 quart chana masala, 1 quart gobi 65)
1 cup each tomato pickle + raita
1 pint mango lassi
If there's enough interest, Spuntino plans to introduce a rotating roster of Indian dishes for weekly Sunday dinners. Once the menu goes live on the Spuntino website (check back later in the evening if you don't see it right away), you'll have until 8:30 p.m. on Friday, May 29, to get your order in.