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Few foodie traditions have woven themselves into the British cultural fabric quite like a chicken tikka masala washed down with a nice cold pint. But as Londoners woke up in yet another post-pub sweat, Indian food developed a bit of an image problem: fattening, oily and plain unhealthy. “Not so,” says entrepreneur Bikesh Kumar, who last month lifted the lid on an entirely...

Few foodie traditions have woven themselves into the British cultural fabric quite like a chicken tikka masala washed down with a nice cold pint.

But as Londoners woke up in yet another post-pub sweat, Indian food developed a bit of an image problem: fattening, oily and plain unhealthy.

“Not so,” says entrepreneur Bikesh Kumar, who last month lifted the lid on an entirely new, non-calorific way of indulging in your favourite Indian flavours.

New Delis adopts the tried and tested concept of customisable eating for Clerkenwell’s lunch crowd.

But instead of the same old question of kale or spinach with your quinoa, customers choose a sauce, grain, protein and level of heat to create their own curry or stir-fry.

The leafy spinach palak sauce with lamb over brown rice is a delicious combination that will leave you feeling sated yet smug, while old friends butter masala and dhabi-wall chicken are always on standby to soak up a hangover. The stir-fry menu breaks down the choices further, but there’s potential for blandness if left too much to your own devices; healthy chefs specials packed with beans and pulses are the fairer option.

An extensive cocktail list looks intriguing. Alternatively, stick with one or two of a decent selection of bottled beers; because some traditions shouldn’t be tampered with.

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