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Indian buffets on Long Island: 6 bargains

The Curry Club offers malai kofta (mixed vegetable

The Curry Club offers malai kofta (mixed vegetable balls) on its lunch buffet. Photo Credit: Doug Young

Here's a good way to spice up your lunch hour, sample some exotic dishes and eat until you can't go on: Ladle your way through an Indian buffet. These six offer a cross-section of what's available on Long Island. --JOAN REMINICK, joan.reminick@newsday.com

KIRAN PALACE, Commack: This strip-mall eatery serves an
Photo Credit: Doug Young

KIRAN PALACE, Commack: This strip-mall eatery serves an assortment of vegetarian and nonvegetarian dishes out of pretty copper kettles. Standards include chicken tikka masala, tandoori chicken and dal (lentils), along with gulab jaman (honey balls) for dessert. Nan is brought to your table. (Monday to Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., $9.95; Saturday and Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., $10.95) (March 19, 2013)

Kiran Palace's turkey biryani. (Nov. 16, 2010)
Photo Credit: Jesse Newman

Kiran Palace's turkey biryani. (Nov. 16, 2010)

Kiran Palace's turkey tikka masala.
Photo Credit: Jesse Newman

Kiran Palace's turkey tikka masala.

RAGA, East Setauket: At this attractive Indian spot,
Photo Credit: Doug Young

RAGA, East Setauket: At this attractive Indian spot, the buffet assortment changes daily but usually includes chicken tikka masala (tandoor-roasted boneless chicken pieces in a spicy, creamy sauce), as well as a juicy mixed (white- and dark-meat chicken) malai kebab (tandoor-grilled marinated chicken). Vegetarian standards include dum aloo Kashmiri (potato with onion, peppers, tomato and cream), saag paneer and yellow dal (lentils). Nan is brought to the table. (Tuesday to Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., $9.99; closed Monday) (March 20, 2013)

Raga's naan, a soft, leavened bread baked in
Photo Credit: Doug Young

Raga's naan, a soft, leavened bread baked in a clay oven. (March 20, 2013)

Buffet items offered at Raga includes chana pindi,
Photo Credit: Doug Young

Buffet items offered at Raga includes chana pindi, (chick peas in cumin), chicken malai kebab, dum aloo hasmiri (potatoes cooked in a tomato based mustard sauce and saag paneer (stewed spinach). (March 20, 2013)

THE CURRY CLUB, East Setauket: A hungry lunch
Photo Credit: Doug Young

THE CURRY CLUB, East Setauket: A hungry lunch crowd from the nearby university and hospital keeps this gracious spot hopping. On the buffet, you'll usually see chicken tikka masala, tandoori chicken and rice. Although there's naan on the table, you can request yours made to order. A star among the vegetarian offerings is the fluffy malai kofta, mixed vegetable balls in a creamy coconut sauce.(Monday to Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., $ 10.99; Saturday and Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., $12.99) (March 20, 2013)

The Curry Club's all-you-can-eat buffet. (March 20, 2013)
Photo Credit: Doug Young

The Curry Club's all-you-can-eat buffet. (March 20, 2013)

The Curry Club offers malai kofta (mixed vegetable
Photo Credit: Doug Young

The Curry Club offers malai kofta (mixed vegetable balls) on its lunch buffet.

ROYAL BUKHARA GRILL, Hicksville: At this light-filled Indian
Photo Credit: Newsday/Rebecca Cooney

ROYAL BUKHARA GRILL, Hicksville: At this light-filled Indian spot, the buffet showcases about 20 dishes. A highlight is a table with the makings of chaat, a street snack of potatoes and chickpeas with crispy bread, sauces and spices, to be put together to taste. Other popular items include a supremely juicy, smoky tandoori chicken, chicken makhani (in a creamy tomato-butter sauce), as well as vegetarian palak paneer (curried spinach with fried cheese). Your choice of bread (garlic nan, plain naan or onion roti) is brought to the table. (Monday to Friday, noon to 3 p.m., $7.99, Saturday and Sunday, $9.99) (March 20, 2013)

As part of its lunch buffet, Royal Bukhara
Photo Credit: Newsday/Rebecca Cooney

As part of its lunch buffet, Royal Bukhara Grill serves a do-it-yourself chaat, a savory snack of potatoes and chickpeas garnished with crispy bread, sauces and spices typically served at stalls and food carts in India. (March 20, 2013)

Royal Bukhara Grill's buffet includes some 10 different
Photo Credit: Newsday/Rebecca Cooney

Royal Bukhara Grill's buffet includes some 10 different curries and dals, rice, fresh-baked naan, and four different desserts. (March 20, 2013)

COTILLION LOUNGE, Jericho: This elegant little Indian-Chinese spot
Photo Credit: Newsday/Rebecca Cooney

COTILLION LOUNGE, Jericho: This elegant little Indian-Chinese spot within a catering hall offers one of the area's most vibrant buffets. In the daily changing assortment of about 12 dishes, it's a good bet you'll find chicken tandoori and an amazingly tender white meat chicken tikka (marinated grilled chicken pieces), as well as a great goat curry. Among vegetarian choices, there's usually saag paneer (creamed spiced spinach with fried cheese). One afternoon, an okra dish excelled. Naan is delivered to your table. ($11.95, daily, noon to 3 p.m.; price includes a soft drink). (March 20, 2013)

Among the lunch buffet offerings at Cotillion Lounge
Photo Credit: Newsday/Rebecca Cooney

Among the lunch buffet offerings at Cotillion Lounge are, left, pakoras (spiced vegetable fritters) and chicken served three ways. (March 20, 2013)

Deserts offered on Cotillion Lounge's buffet include gulab
Photo Credit: Newsday/Rebecca Cooney

Deserts offered on Cotillion Lounge's buffet include gulab jamun, left, and gajar halwa, a carrot pudding flavored with cardamon. (March 20, 2013)

CHENNAI DOSAS, Hicksville: Even carnivores will appreciate the
Photo Credit: Nancy Borowick

CHENNAI DOSAS, Hicksville: Even carnivores will appreciate the bright, confidently spiced assortment at this South Indian vegetarian restaurant, whose sign still reads "Dosa Diner." Standouts include light, fluffy idli (steamed doughnuts) as well as made-to-order dosas (potato-filled rice-lentil pancakes), chapati (wheat bread) and the airy-foamy uttapam (dosa batter with filling baked inside); for a real kick, get yours with onions, chilies and peas. ($8.95 Monday to Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.; $9.95 Saturday and Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.) (March 14, 2013)

Customers line up to serve South Indian specialties
Photo Credit: Nancy Borowick

Customers line up to serve South Indian specialties to themselves at Chennai Dosas. (March 14, 2013)

Chennai Dosas offers vegetarian buffet options. (March 14,
Photo Credit: Nancy Borowick

Chennai Dosas offers vegetarian buffet options. (March 14, 2013)

Chennai Dosas head chef and owner Muthu Adhimoolam.
Photo Credit: Nancy Borowick

Chennai Dosas head chef and owner Muthu Adhimoolam. (March 14, 2013)

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