Never Mind The Bus Pass - Just Pass The Madras

Last Thursday was a landmark date for The Tramp's family. The Commander, head of the clan and long-time curry connoisseur, turned 60. Having spent the day applying for his free bus pass and working out which major stores run over-60s discount schemes (B&Q do 10% off on a Wednesday while legendary Scottish cheesemonger Iain Mellis will knock 10% off for senior citz on a Thursday apparently) the family got together for a celebratory dinner. And what better way to toast his birthday than with a takeaway feast from The Commander's favourite Indian restaurant: the one and only Shish Mahal.

Long-term readers will know that while TATTGOC can never officially visit the Shish Mahal (on account of it being arguably the best Indian restaurant in Glasgow, and incredibly well-known) it gets name-checked often on the blog due to the deep affection that both Trampy, The Tramp and many other TATTGOCers, hold for the institution. Well, The Commander has been a die-hard fan right from the start and since his student days in the late 60s the Shish has been a firm favourite. I recall many an exciting childhood trip to the old Shish Mahal on Gibson Street, and even when the family moved to the Borders sometimes The Commander would bring back surprise takeaway to be reheated and devoured after an epic journey down from Glasgow. This special 60th birthday curry was a surprise, and the order was left in The Tramp's safe hands ... So what did we have?

After starting with a healthy round of poppadoms and spiced onions we fired into the Shish's peerless vegetable pakora plus generous, and very firey, portions of The Tramp's firm favourites, Hasina Lamb Chops. For the mains we shared: Chicken Korma, Lamb Korma, Chicken Chasni, Tarka Dhaal, Chicken Bhoona and, for old times sake, The Commander's favourite Shish dish - the sweat-inducingly hot lamb madras. This considerable order was accompanied by massive portions of rice, two plain naan and a peshwari.

All in all, a top-notch meal, as any meal from the Shish always is. That's not all though ... another momentous event occurred during the meal too - The Tramp's young nephew and member of TATTGOC's junior section, The Curry Cubs, had his first taste of the Shish Mahal at the tender age of just 21 months old (the wee man can be spotted in the background, sat next to The Commander in the top photo) beating his dad's record by at least a few months. Family legend has it that The Tramp's brother first tucked into a Shish curry at the tender age of 2 ... The Tramp was apparently a bit older than that.

Happy 60th Birthday Commander - TATTGOC salutes you!


Sir Spicy said...

Perhaps my favourite ever TATGOC post. Happy birthday Commander! Never tried the Lamb Madras at the Shish. Know what I'll be having the next time though. :-) Brilliant family pics too.

phelan said...

Happy birthday Commander. This post filled me with an almost romantic yearning for the Shish.

The Tramp said...

The madras is mighty hot and well worth a try. I hadn't dabbled with the lamb madras since I was a teenager, and generally keep it quite mild these days, so I was a bit hesitant to try it again. It was top notch though - highly recommended.

Phelan - it probably doesn't help much just now but you know that as soon as you touch down in Glasgow again it'll be straight over to Park Road for the classic Shish/Doublet welcome home double whammy. It's the law.

Trampy said...

Not to get too cosmic, but if The Commander hadn't nurtured such a pure love of curry within the youthful Tramp, reins and all, there's a high potentiality that TATTGOC wouldn't even exist. All the more reason to salute this fine gentleman!