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Byron Shire
December 1, 2021

Karma Indian Café, Byron

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If you like your food authentic, and home made, with real flavour, the best ingredients, positivity and love, then you’re going to love Karma Café.

With a back story of love, good karma and street food from two completely separate states of India, it’s no wonder that Karma Café is one of the most popular Indian restaurants around. Addy and Sukh got married without the agreement of their families, which is ‘a huge thing’, says Addy, ‘so we ran away, got married and came to Australia for a better life, and to stay together forever’. You have to love that. 

Addy is from Mumbai (formerly Bombay) in the western state of Maharashtra. Whilst it’s a big state, it has a slightly more ‘austere’ reputation in cuisine terms, with many lacto-vegetarian dishes and less meat. Unique dishes, which you can try at the Café, include green banana koftas, and the best-selling potato eggplant in peanut sauce, or perhaps cabbage cooked with chickpea lentils and mini potatoes. 

Sukh is from Punjab, a state in the north, bordering Pakistan, and the heart of India’s Sikh community. Again, Punjabi food is varied, but makes more use of the tandoor – you should try their slow cooked lamb mushroom curry, or coconut prawn Malabar, or perhaps the green chicken (cooked with loads of green vegetables like broccoli, green beans and spinach, it’s super healthy and yummy).

But the ‘king’ of Punjabi food is butter chicken, and Karma Café has a version that’s full of real flavour. According to Addy, ‘you can’t eat butter chicken every day’, but this seems to be one of those ‘adult’ rules that the local circus kids are bent on testing (the café is in the Circus Arts building). If you want to eat their butter chicken, or curries, however, there’s a bit of planning to be done.t

The curries are only available Mon to Thurs (8.30am–5pm), but they are sold out by lunchtime, so for dinner orders you need to pre-order by text to 0450152715 before 1pm. Then you can pick up the curries before 5pm.

On Friday and Saturday they serve breakfast; during December they are doing cheap Friday breakfast meals 8.30am–1.30pm, then the restaurant is shut in the afternoon/evening, so no curries on Friday night, nor on Saturday night either because the Café is only open from 9am–12.30pm. The curry menu is on Insta: karma.cafe, and the meal deals are on social media.

The unique breakfast is the only Aussie Indian breakfast in the Northern Rivers, we believe, and they serve proper spiced Indian chai.

The Café is really popular with the local tradies, and of course the circus parents, but it seems to be worth the trouble at ordering before 1pm to get your hands on these curries. For one thing, they are made fresh every day from scratch, and also, each curry has its own unique spice profile: all spices are hand blended in house and roasted for optimum flavour and taste. 

If you like your food authentic, and home made, with real flavour, the best ingredients, positivity and love, then you’re going to love Karma Café, and you’ll be supporting a couple of people who are giving back to their new community too.

Karma Café Ph: 0450 152 715
17 Centennial Cct Byron Bay.

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