Food News

Red Hot Chili Pepper Fuses Indian and Chinese Cuisine

Cauliflower Manchurian is tossed in a garlic-ginger paste.
Cauliflower Manchurian is tossed in a garlic-ginger paste. Anisha Holla
Red Hot Chilli Pepper’s name itself might be enough to pique the interest of spice lovers across Dallas. The red fiery lettering of the sign outside only heightens expectations for some chili-filled, eye-watering, tongue-burning food. The dishes here can get spicy, but even if you’re not a fan of everything that’s spicy and hot, we still suggest making a stop. The taste of the food here is well worth it.
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The sign is a big tell.
Anisha Holla
Red Hot Chilli Pepper opened its Frisco location in 2017 as a typical Indian restaurant, serving up savory curries, naan breads and rice dishes. More recently, the restaurant has revamped its menu to weave East Asian influences into the typical dishes of the Indian subcontinent. According to the website, its fusion food is “inspired by the Sino-Indian cultural fusion” that originated in the small towns around Kolkata, India.

The menu here is long and descriptions are scant. For indecisive folks, don’t be afraid to ask for help navigating. You might need it. Upon long deliberation, we decided to kick things off with a plate of the cauliflower Manchurian ($11.99), an Indo-Chinese specialty that starts with a base of batter-fried crispy cauliflower.

Tossed in cilantro, onions and a garlic-ginger paste, the dish bursts with the Indian garlic flavors and is accentuated with characteristically Chinese hints of soy and ginger. The dish isn’t too large, but we suggest you bring people to share. You’ll want to save space for everything else the menu has to offer.
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Hakka noodles.
Anisha Holla
Entrée options here include everything from chili-honey tofu ($13.99) to burnt garlic fried rice ($12.99) to Calcutta chow mein noodles ($13.99). Spice lovers may also find themselves particularly intrigued by the (very fittingly named) Devil’s Chicken ($15.99). The specialty dish comes with diced chicken tossed in sautéed peppers, onion and garlic. The meat is drenched in a ghost-pepper sauce and comes with a capitalized “VERY SPICY” warning. Pay attention; there’s a reason it’s there.

In the instance that you need a break from the eye-watering, tongue-burning goodness, Red Hot Chilli Pepper has its fair share of sweet drinks on the menu, too. Consider ordering an Amritsari mango lassi ($4.99) with your meal. The drink comes with a sweetened yogurt base blended with rich mango pulp to cool the palate between bites. The falooda ($7.99) is another chilled drink option here. The traditional Indian drink comes with a milkshake-like base, with items like vermicelli noodles, chia seeds and nuts blended in to add some extra texture.

In the event you’re an extreme spice enthusiast who refuses a sweet drink with your meal, this may be one of the few times you don’t have to sit out on a beverage. The “aam sutra” drink is made with a sweetened lychee concentrate but is blended in with a spiced green mango flavoring to add a spicy punch to each sip.

We warned you: They don’t take spice lightly here.

Red Hot Chili Pepper, 8549 Gaylord Parkway, Frisco. Monday – Thursday, 11:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.; Friday – Saturday, 11:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Sunday, noon – 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
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Anisha Holla is a freelance food writer for the Dallas Observer, a position that grew from her love for both food and storytelling. A university student by day and an avid eater by night, she loves exploring the hidden spots in Dallas’ eclectic food scene.
Contact: Anisha Holla

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