A Sandwich a Day: Paneer Kati Roll at Tawa Foods
In this great city of ours, one could eat a different sandwich every day of the year—so that's what we'll do. Here's A Sandwich a Day, our daily look at sandwiches around New York. Got a sandwich we should check out? Let us know. —The Mgmt.
No matter where you are, if you order paneer, you have a pretty good sense of what you're going to get: a firm, mild, ricotta-like cheese that doesn't melt. So I was genuinely surprised to open up my paneer kati roll ($5) at Tawa Foods and find a mix of onion, cilantro, and—huh?—melted cheese. The owner explained: "it's American cheese." I asked for elaboration. "You know, mozzarella."
It sounds crazy. Okay, it is crazy. And it's an inexplicable surprise from a spot that makes fairly authentic (and uncompromisingly delicious) Indian and Nepalese fare. But it totally works, a kind of vegetarian queso wrap (spices + herbs + onions + warm gooey cheese is crazy delicious). The crisp-chewy homemade paratha—likely made on the table right next to yours—is an especially fine example of the form: buttery, full of delicate flavor, and not at all greasy. It's a wonderful kati roll, and unlike any you'll find anywhere else. Especially India.
Tawa's Nepali Hut
37-38 72nd St, Jackson Heights, Queens 11372 (map)