A couple of printed sheets of A4 on the wall and in the window name the available dishes. There are no descriptions.
Some items are familiar- samosas, bhajis, bhel puri, curries (oddly takeaway only) and barfi (the milk-based Indian sweet which tastes like its name sounds).
However, there are other items which have me baffled - batata vada, pease kachori, dahi puri and aloo tikki to name a few.
I stick to the known.
Pani puri (£2.50 for 6) are great - six crisp parcels filled with soft potato and chickpeas, coriander and red onion. They’re accompanied by a little pot of spicy & fresh pani water so you can fill the puri at the table and keep them nice and crisp.
A paneer tikka roll (£1) is a comforting deep-fried pastry filled with well-spiced paneer and vegetable curry. It’s microwaved to order so is inevitably lacking on the crispness front.
Dessert is an excellent gulab jamun (£2). Served at room temperature and lightly fragranced with cardamom, it’s accompanied by a scoop of smooth Sidoli’s vanilla ice cream.
Pooja is a different, tasty, cheap and cheerful lunchtime pit stop. If you fancy something different to the usual cheese sandwich and sausage roll then give it a go.
Soon after my first visit, Pooja introduced a much clearer menu with visual prompts and a number of bargainous meal deals. I've been back for countless plates of pani puri and paneer rolls.
Their samosa chaat (£2.50) comprised of a broken up vegetable samosa topped with mild chickpea curry, yoghurt, tangy tamarind sauce, fresh coriander and crisp bits of pani. It's a lovely bit of comfort food.
A paneer tikka curry (£3) was well spiced and laden with bits of cheese. It was a bit heavy on the ghee but I'm not complaining at this price. A pair of soft chapatis were warm and super fresh.
Address - Pooja, 3 Albany Road, Cardiff CF24 3LH
Telephone - 029 2021 4987