A not-very-definitive guide to eating (and living) as a vegan in Nashville.

Woodlands December 14, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — Nashvegan @ 11:38 am
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Assorted Appetizer

Why is  it that, in every city I go to, the vegetarian Indian restaurant is named Woodlands?  A mystery for another time, my friends.  Because now is the time to talk about delicious Indian food.

I went to Woodlands with two highly skeptical non-vegetarian friends, only one of whom was actually familiar with Indian food.  We decided the Assorted Appetizer would be a good start, so we could try a bit of everything.  The sampler featured Idly (a steamed lentil and rice cake), Vegetable Samosas (pastry stuffed with potatoes and peas), Vegetable Cutlets (breaded and fried potato and vegetable patties), Vada (a fried lentil doughnut), and Vegetable Pakora (battered and fried potatoes, onion, and eggplant) served with a variety of dipping sauces.  Everything on this plate was amazing.  Seriously.  All three of us loved everything we ate, and at this point we were skeptical about having room for our entrees.  As we should have been.

Woodlands Special Rava Masala Dosa

Since Woodlands specializes in Dosas, I decided to order one of those.  In case you don’t know, a dosa is a thin rice crepe stuffed with the filling of your choice served with sauce (at Woodlands, sambar and coconut chutney).  The Woodlands menu features 16 different varieties of dosas.  I selected the Woodlands Special, which is typically served with paneer (cheese), but is easily made vegan by leaving that off.  The Woodlands Special comes stuffed with coconut, chili, onion, potatoes, and spices.  Guess what adjective I’m going to use to describe this dish?  That’s right, amazing.  The crepe itself was perfectly seasoned and had a melt-in-your-mouth texture that was truly divine, and that was before I even got to the savory, fluffy filling.  My non-Indian-loving friend ordered the same thing (keeping the paneer) and she loved hers as well.

Also, in case you can’t tell from the photo, the thing is huge.  It was bigger than my head.  After filling up on delicious appetizers, I couldn’t even get halfway through this dish.  Thankfully, it was still good the next day, even though the crepe lost some of its delicate texture after hanging out in my refrigerator.

One of the best thing about Woodlands is the staff.  They are super-helpful and very knowledgeable about what’s vegan and what isn’t.  So if you aren’t familiar with Indian food and are hesitant, don’t be, because your friendly server can help you navigate the menu.  If you’ve never had Indian food before, what is the matter with you?  Get off your butt and go  to Woodlands right now.  You can thank me later.


3415 West End Avenue

Nashville, TN 37203



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2 Responses to “Woodlands”

  1. Michaela Says:

    Thanks for this post! I’ve been to Woodlands once before and loved it. Did you happen to ask the server about ghee? We were told that the dosas are all made with ghee unless you specify otherwise (which, of course, would make them not vegan). We were also told that the green sauce (mint?) served with appetizers has dairy in it. (Alas, they didn’t tell us that until a few bites in.)

    • Nashvegan Says:

      I did specifically ask about ghee. I know that I stayed away from the naan, as that had ghee. My server seemed very knowledgeable and assured me that everything featured in this post was vegan. He said he would make the necessary modifications on the dosa, and that all the sauces on the appetizer sampler were “safe.” I know from experience that different servers can say different things, but I tried my best 🙂

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