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India House Restaurant is all about family

By: Don Chaddock, Telegraph Managing Editor
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Daljit Sandhu pushes a plate of nan bread at diners in his Folsom restaurant, India House, on a recent afternoon. “Here, you have to try this,” he tells a family with two small children. “This is sweet, not spicy. You will like this.” For Sandhu, teaching others about the cuisine of his native country is a passion and one he shares with gusto. “I try to sit with people who don’t know Indian food and help them,” he said. “It’s like a family.” And family is something Sandhu knows all too well as he works alongside his wife Lakhwinder Kaur Sandhu and two grown sons, Jobanjit and Jolly. He said his eldest daughter is also in the restaurant business with her in-laws. “They own three Indian restaurants in Singapore,” she said. Jobanjit, or “Joe” as he’s more commonly known, may be the manager, but they all wear many hats. “Everybody can work in the kitchen,” said Daljit. “This is a family restaurant.” Rather than have produce delivered by a faceless supplier, the Sandhu family takes matters, and produce, into their own hands. “We personally go buy the food ourselves,” Daljit said. “It’s all fresh, not from some vendor.” Daljit prides himself on the eatery’s quality, saying none of their sauces are prepackaged. “Nothing is coming out of a can,” he said. “Everything we make here.” The family has owned the restaurant for three years and they’ve garnered plenty of praise. They’ve won “best of” awards from readers of The Folsom Telegraph, Style Media Group, Folsom Living and others. As a familiar face walks past the restaurant’s front door, Daljit excuses himself and steps outside to wish the person a happy New Year. “When I see customers, I can’t help it. I need to talk to them,” he said. “It’s in my blood.” Daljit said Indian cuisine also has other benefits aside from satisfying hunger. “Basically, it’s healthy for you,” he said. In India, he said people use some of the soups and broths to help bolster the body’s immune system and speed healing for those suffering from injuries or illness. “Indian food is known for being spicy, but that’s not always the case,” Daljit said. “It’s also very flavorful.” * * * IN THE KNOW India House Where: 2776 E. Bidwell St., Suite 300, Folsom Hours: Open for lunch and dinner Phone: 817-4356 Web site: indiahouse-online.com