It was worth the wait. Tamil Nadu’s famous Murugan Idli Shop has opened their first branch in London.
The vegetarian chain of restaurants founded by S.Manoharan, who studied food & catering technology in London, has twenty branches in Tamil Nadu and two in Singapore.
On our visit to the London branch, we were delighted to hear that S.Manoharan was in the kitchen cooking. We knew we were in for a treat and about to relive that first bite of Murugan’s soft Idli’s which we experienced in Chennai. Thankfully he is staying in London for the next three months to oversee operations of his new branch.
Located in East ham, Murugan’s vibrant facade stands out on the east London high street where you will find the largest concentration of South Indian (Tamilnadu / Kerala) & Northern Sri Lankan restaurants in Europe – a haven for vegetarians in London’s zone 3.
The steamed savoury rice cake, idly or idli originates from the Indian subcontinent. A popular breakfast amongst the Tamil speaking communities in South India & Sri Lanka. The cakes are made by steaming a batter consisting of fermented black lentils (de-husked) and rice.
It’s vegetarian, vegan and regarded as healthy. We naturally gravitated to the not so healthy Ghee Podi Idli, which at £1.65 a piece and served with three chutney and a sambar was a steal.
As with all Tamil restaurants, we recommend visiting on an empty stomach. The shockingly cheap pricing of great food available in close proximity to central London will result in you ordering an abundance.
The idli is morish and one bite will quickly escalate to a few pieces. After your fill of idli move onto another item from their shortened London menu – which will soon be expanded!
The small onion
Is the journey to East Ham worth it? Absolutely! Leave the frozen idli in hibernation. It’s time to discover what Idli should taste like.