Skip to content
13 February 2014 / leggypeggy

Great food at hole-in-the wall restaurants in Mussoorie

Tandoori paneer

Tandoori paneer—ordered two days in a row

Indian kitchen

A streamlined kitchen at Friend’s

I know I said the next stop would be the Agra Fort, but my stomach was growling so I decided to make a short side trip to a couple of restaurants in the Himalayan hill station of Mussoorie.

Our visit to Mussoorie was an added extra—tacked on at the end of our main overland trip. I’ll write more posts about the sights we saw in and around Mussoorie, but now I want to tell you about the fantastic food we had in two hole-in-the-wall establishments.

Friend's restaurant, Mussoorie

Shifting the tandoor oven in a great little restaurant wedged into a small space

First stop was lunch at a place called Friend’s, Bar-Be-Que Nation. Located on Mussoorie’s main shopping street, The Mall, Friend’s offers takeaway and a few tables for people who prefer to eat-in.

Five of us squeezed sideways into the narrow dining area and faced the difficult challenge of trying to decide what to order. Thinking back, I can hardly remember all our choices, but everything was sensational and the photos help.

What I do remember are the momos (little meat-filled Tibetan dumplings), tandoori paneer (with paneer being a kind of compressed cottage cheese), chicken tikka and a Kathi roll (like a wrap).

I was in heaven. We all were—so much so that we returned the next day for dinner.


A yummy veg and spice-filled paratha for breakfast. The red drink in the background is made from rhododendron concentrate

patting out paratha

Patting out the paratha—note the griddle in the background

The Punjabi Restaurant was our other find. It’s tucked just off The Mall and is a top spot for breakfast. We ate there two mornings in a row, sampling several kinds of paratha—fried flat bread filled with all sorts of different goodies..

The chef/owner was gracious enough to let me invade his kitchen for a photo session. Our parathas were filled with mixtures of potato, onion, chilli and spices. Just what I love for breakfast—savoury food.

If all this has made you hungry, be sure to visit my cooking blog.


Leave a Comment
  1. weggieboy / Feb 14 2014 1:03 am

    Yum! Makes the waffles I had for breakfast seem so…erm…pointless!


    • leggypeggy / Feb 14 2014 7:24 am

      I’d never refuse a waffle. In fact, now I’m hungry for one.


  2. Sy S. / Feb 14 2014 4:01 am

    Yummy Wowzeer! What a great find… ! Too bad we all can’t taste the various dishes, but all is not lost.
    Maybe you can post a few recipes (guess on ingredients) on food dot com (which Peggy goes to often and in fact is one of the “chefs” who help run some food threads along with others). Or maybe some of the dishes can be found by Googling and on some Indian/Indian Sub-Continent websites. Aside — Peggy also has a food blog “Cooking on Page 32” which you might want to have a look;
    Sy S.


    • leggypeggy / Feb 14 2014 7:16 am

      Hi Sy
      I’ve found lots of great recipes online and may try to post some here after I’ve given them a trial run to determine what works best. Have already bought some atta flour to use for parathas.


  3. Joanne T Ferguson / Feb 14 2014 11:53 am

    G’day and YUM Peggy, true!
    I was asked to be a host of a worldwide challenge and paratha was already proposed by me months ago…can’t wait…love the idea of tandoor paneer!
    Cheers! Joanne


  4. David / Feb 14 2014 7:31 pm

    Yum, Peggy! Thank you! Great work at making all hungry! Seriously great work and thank you so much!

    Reminds me that recently I met friends for lunch prior to their attending “EVITA” theatrical performance downtown. The only Argentinian restaurant was too far from the theater for walking convenience (they park, eat, then walk to the theater) so I chose a hole-in-the-wall Peruvian restaurant. I warned them ahead of time that it was not much to look at from the outside however the food is fantastic, still you could feel the apprehension as they took their seats at the high table I had chosen so I could stand. We all ended up having the same dish which was wonderful and they thanked me again and again for finding such a find!

    It also reminded me of what you stated and re-stated on my last visit or visit before; that I had a much broader palate than most from where I’m from. Not sure why but I do love all foods or at least all the foods I’ve tried to date other than pickled beets, my sole exception really. Both of my grandmothers were good cooks along with my Mom so maybe that had something to do with it, also we never complained about what was put on the table regardless of whose home and we ate all or at least most of the food to be polite to our host, knowing that food preparation is very hard work and many folks do not have the food they need.


    • leggypeggy / Feb 14 2014 10:07 pm

      Absolutely delighted that your friends loved the Peruvian restaurant. It’s so wonderful when sceptics find a new cuisine that they like.

      And yes, you are an adventurous eater. That really is a gift and a blessing. Don’t you feel sorry for those who won’t try anything new?

      P.S. I grew up eating what was put in front of me, and both my folks were good cooks. I feel lucky for that.


  5. Kenny2dogs / Feb 15 2014 2:44 am

    Marvelous “not” !!! I am on a strict diet and you have to show me this. Bet you done it on purpose 🙂


    • leggypeggy / Feb 15 2014 7:54 am

      Oops sorry! So what can you eat? I’ll post a recipe or a restaurant dish that you can have.


      • Kenny2dogs / Feb 26 2014 9:52 am

        I can not eat grapefruit or any dairy food that did not originate in England. No sugar, all rodents except Rabbits, horses and”Oh” Yes human flesh is a no no. Hope you can help. 🙂


      • leggypeggy / Feb 26 2014 11:07 am

        Guess I won’t send you a grapefruit from the tree in my backyard.


  6. Sy S. / Feb 15 2014 12:09 pm

    Hello L-P, I have been to India but still there are so many places and names I am not familiar with… So I looked up Mussoorie and see it is near Delhi and close to Nepal, Pakistan. Looks like an interestng place to visit and take photos of… and for sure the food is good.
    Sy S.


    • leggypeggy / Feb 15 2014 6:17 pm

      Hi Sy, like you I hadn’t heard of Mussoorie before. It’s a lovely hill station with some interesting touristic sights nearby. Stay tuned for a rundown and some photos.


  7. / Feb 17 2014 8:28 am

    Peggy, I am totally starving now. This looks like some of my favorite food on the planet, and your photos are mouth-watering! I’ve never had the momos – are they steamed? ~Terri


    • leggypeggy / Feb 17 2014 2:21 pm

      Yes, momos are steamed and absolutely divine. We started slow by ordering a plate to share, then another, then another. Burp!


  8. Prayaanindia / Feb 27 2014 5:13 am

    Oh my god… I still remember the taste of them, what a food!! I would love to go there again and again. I should dedicate a one-month overland trip to Indian food only. What you think!! 😉


    • leggypeggy / Feb 27 2014 7:55 am

      A food trip! Yes! Can I be the one who goes to check out restaurants?


  9. thegreyeye / Apr 5 2015 6:36 pm

    Wow, you are really enjoying the taste of India.That is great as I do not find many westerner to do that. Many of then usually complain of food being spicy or not clean. Though I find them great.


    • leggypeggy / Apr 9 2015 9:53 pm

      We adore Indian food. In fact, I think most Australians and Britishers are very fond of Indian dishes.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. jim chagg / Apr 1 2016 10:54 pm

    Enjoy a holiday in the wilderness of Jim Corbett and catch a glimpse of Tiger and other wild animals in the lush forests of the national park.


    • leggypeggy / Apr 12 2016 3:49 am

      We didn’t see much wildlife in Corbett when we were there, but we really enjoyed the landscapes.


  11. Vicki / Oct 15 2016 12:00 pm

    Looks delicious and great Photography, Peggy.
    (and yes, I am now hungry for some Indian Food…….despite my, now, delicate digestion). I have 97% of the spices needed for most Indian dishes, so I might just have a cook-a-thon in the next week if I can reduce the heat in some of my recipe books).

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Oct 25 2016 1:13 am

      I hope you got to make some Indian dishes. I’d be happy to suggest some low-heat options.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Vicki / Oct 25 2016 8:57 am

        I get most of my recipes from Charmaine Solomon’s The Complete Asian Cookbook. I’m making Dahi Murgh (Chicken and Yoghurt Curry on p 45) tonight. It’s simple and one only needs to ensure you have plain yoghurt and some good fragrant fresh coriander. (smkt fresh coriander seems to have no smell at all so I usually buy it from an Asian grocer at the market, smelling it first to ensure I’ve got a good bunch). On this occasion, my brother has brought me down a fresh bunch from his country hobby farm over the weekend. I’ve usually got fresh garlic and ginger anyway.

        In general, I tend to prefer vegetarian, chicken or lamb curries. Beef curry always seems tough to me. I usually dry roast the individual spices, then add a puree of fresh coriander, onion, garlic, ginger and a little ghee or oil, then whatever the recipe says from there. I’m a big fan of panak paneer too.

        Liked by 1 person

      • leggypeggy / Oct 25 2016 1:20 pm

        Solomon’s book is excellent and I use mine often. I also like cookbooks and recipes by Madhur Jaffrey and Julie Sahni.

        I agree with you about fresh coriander and always make the effort to buy from an Asian shop or farmer’s market. And, yes, I prefer vegetarian, chicken or lamb curries, although I make a good beef rendang that cooks for four hours and gets quite tender.

        Have you ever made your own paneer?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Vicki / Oct 25 2016 8:16 pm

        No , I haven’t Peggy.

        Cooking for one 99% of the time (just li’l old me) never seemed worth the effort as I can buy a good quality paneer cheese in the s/mkt.

        I actually use Charmaine’s recipe for pea paneer (can’t remember what it’s called), just substituting the peas for a bunch of well washed spinach.

        When I lived with a (Malaysian) Chinese family for 2 years back in the early 1990s, I cooked Indian food for them, especially vegetarian and they flatteringly told me my Indian food was better than in an Indian restaurant (quite sincerely). J’s father used to be the Malaysian Foreign Minister when they lived in Malaysia I think. J’s Mother used to tell me about having 50 people for lunch at short notice (but I daresay she had servants and cooks in Maylasia 🙂 )

        By co-incidence, a good friend S’s father used to be the Bhutanese Consul General and the family lived in India for some years. S is a very experimental cook and seems to have cookery books from every country she’s visited (like you). I daresay you and S. would have much in common. We have yet to catch up from her recent visit to Iran and I can’t help but wonder how many cookery books she bought this o/s visit.

        My friends first introduced me to Indian food back in about the early1980s when there were only 1-2 Indian restaurants in Melbourne. But I did eat some fiery hot beef curry with an English boyfriend in London back in about 1978(?).

        I think it was Charmaine’s book that taught me the importance of dry roasting the spices for 2-3 minutes and adding everything in the right order.

        I gave the book and ingredients to my younger brother when he was staying with me and as usual, he made it all together his own way, not measuring any spice (which I’m sure you could do being a good cook, but not him) and the result……absolutely tasteless and downright boring. Not that I told him. I dutifully ate it.

        I rarely cook anything nowadays. I don’t have the energy and my lower back hurts too much standing in one position next to the stove (and ironing for 20-30 mins is torture). I try to alternate sitting at the computer, walking around or lying flat for the occasional rest.

        So saying…….it’s after 8.00pm and the Chicken Curry is calling me. Hope you’re enjoying your trip.


      • leggypeggy / Oct 25 2016 11:12 pm

        Hope you enjoy your curry.

        We’re having an excellent time, and had especially good vegetarian food for lunch. Even tried two dishes I’ve never had before. A photo of one is coming soon. 🙂

        My first experience with Indian food was in 1980 in Jordan. The Indian restaurant there was quite famous. Indian food was unheard of in the USA when I was growing up—only Italian, Mexican and Chinese. But I’m most fond of Indian.

        Enjoyed the stories about your foodie friends. Hope you can catch up soon with S.

        Sorry your back pain interferes with cooking, but hoping you are able to give up ironing. 🙂



  1. While you’re at it, please deep-fry my carbs and add some butter | Where to next?
  2. Celebrating the multicultural aspects of Australia | Where to next?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: