Bangladeshi pot pie

The tandoori chicken, as one would hope, is excellent at King of Tandoor. But the most distinctive dish at this darkly-lit but endearingly friendly neighborhood Indian, which opened last year on Callowhill Street, resembles an exotic lamb pot pie. Lamb dampakht is actually from Bangladesh, says co-owner Mohammed Islam, and it is served here in a copper crock with an aromatic lamb stew, mildly spiced with curry and yogurt, sealed beneath a crust that puffs like a dome.

Dampakht

means "steam preserve," Islam says.

So half the pleasure is the burst of curry-scented steam that greets your nose when that bubble of butter naan pastry is pierced. But what of its taste? That lamb stew - superbly tender and rich with ginger, turmeric, coriander, and chile - thankfully lives up to its aroma.

- Craig LaBan
Lamb dampakht, $13.95, King of Tandoor, 1824 Callowhill St., 215-568-0750.