One of the most fun things about working at Clover is that sometimes your most treasured food memories turn into menu items, and you get to share them with new people. The spicy, delicious Sharan sandwich (say sha-RAHN, not like the Massachusetts town) was created by Sharan Patil, who was a BU intern in our kitchen.
Growing up in Bangalore, India, Sharan and his family used to love Indo-Chinese food. If you’ve never heard of it, it’s a mashup of Chinese and Indian ingredients (think soy sauce instead of garam masala.) If you get a chance to try it, the dishes are spicy, sticky, rich with umami, extremely satisfying.
Sharan told us that his favorite Indo-Chinese dish is Gobi Manchurian: battered-and-fried cauliflower florets in a sticky, soy-sauce infused pepper sauce. This dish was invented in the late 1970s by Nelson Wang, a fine dining chef, and became a huge hit in India.
The Sharan returns to Clover every time we can get good local peppers to make the Manchurian spread.
We spread a thick layer of Manchurian spread on the pita. We batter and fry fall cauliflower (very hard to find locally but we can usually get our hands on some), make a Napa cabbage slaw with fresh local cabbage. There’s a really fun topping too: rice noodles that we toss into the fryer so they get all puffed up.
Not near a Clover? Indo-chinese food is a bit hard to find in the US, though if you venture into Somerville you can try it at Dosa ‘N Curry — just scroll down to the Indo-Chinese section of the menu. We’re also making a Meal Box version of the Sharan that we can deliver to your door. You’ll just warm up the cauliflower and pita, add Manchurian spread and slaw, and in minutes you’ll be eating Sharan’s creation in your own home. Thanks Sharan!