Thira, 32 Darwen Street, Blackburn, BB2 2BY – Visit Now
No trip to Blackburn is complete without trying one of its many Indian cuisine restaurants. Every Blackburner has their favourite but Thira comes out top time and time again, and can be found conveniently close to the town centre.
The unassuming interior is home to tasty Kerala cuisine which draws its distinction from food staples, fish, tapioca and coconut oil. This isn’t a surprise given that this Southern Indian state boasts 600 km of shoreline and its name translates to ‘Land of the Coconut’.
Although the menu has the classic kormas, jalfrezis and masalas, it offers much more variation than the more common Balti houses with plenty of space given to the traditional dishes found in this Southern region including Appam, Prawn Moily and Kozhikodan Biriyani.
An insider tip: locals love the Masala Dosa, a spicy potato stuffed crepe cooked up on a hot plate made with rice and lentils. It comes rolled, with a selection of dips and has the appeal of an Indian Street Food snack. It’s the little dishes and starters like this that shine here, such as fried okra cooked with onions and tomato masala (Vendakkaya Masala) or fried lentil flour savoury donuts (Medu vada). If you’re a fan of Sri Lankan cuisine you’ll be happy to see dishes like this come with the delicious coconut chutney that compliments so many of their meals, and you’ll recognise some other culinary crossovers.
A family run business, the man behind Thira’s kitchen doors has been in the business for over 20 years. The atmosphere is casual and this isn’t a place to eat in a haste – service isn’t particularly speedy but the restaurant is licensed, so grab yourself a window table, a Cobra and enjoy the conversation or some people watching out on to Darwen Street while you wait.