Leading up to this year's Best of L.A. issue (due out Oct. 4), we'll be counting down, in no particular order, 100 of our favorite dishes.
79: Tandoori Chicken at Al-Watan
Surely we can't be alone in our endless fascination with the tandoori oven, a cylindrical-shaped clay oven that facilitates a large amount of the cooking done in South Asia. Imagine an upright high-test jet engine -- glowing, roaring and sputtering -- powered with the smoky hellfire of a barbecue pit, equipped to churn out buttery swaths of naan, juicy grilled seekh kebabs, or brick-red tandoori chickens with the same frequency that Neapolitan pizza ovens spit out char-flecked pies.
At Al-Watan, the oven reigns supreme. A plate of (halal) tandoori chicken arrives on a sizzling cast-iron platter, moist and succulent from its overnight soak in yogurt and spices and chopped into rough sections before being tossed with slivers of raw onion and wedges of lemon. Like many great meals that involve flame-cooked meats, you will dig in with your hands -- which will become saturated with the smell of woodsmoke and exotic spices. There is a squeeze bottle of cool watery yogurt sauce mixed with coriander, too, intended to provide respite.
Check out the rest of our 100 of our favorite dishes. Suggestion? Write us a comment.
100: Lukshon's Dan Dan Noodles
99: Cemita de Milanesa at Cemitas Poblanos Elviritas #1
98: Chichen Itza's Cochinita Pibil
97: Tsukemen at Tsujita L.A.
96: La Cevicheria's Bloody Clam Ceviche
95: Duck Shawarma at Momed
94: Peruvian Chicken at Pollo a la Brasa
93: Squash Blossom Quesadilla at Antojitos Carmen
92: Thai Boat Noodles at Pa-Ord
91: Baco Mercat's Bazole
90: Furikake Kettle Corn at A-Frame
89: Live Santa Barbara Spot Prawns at Providence
88: Fried Pig Tails at Night + Market
87: Egg Salad Sandwich at Euro Pane
86: Galbi Jjim at Soban
85: Truffle Honey-Laced Fried Chicken at Manhattan Beach Post
84: Mool Naeng Myun at Yu Chic Naeng Myun
83: Chicken Vampiro at Mexicali Taco & Co
82: Sooo Cali Dog at Dog Haus
81: White Anchovy, Tomato and Fresno Chile Pizza at Pizzeria Mozza
80: Shu Mai at Elite Restaurant
Want more Squid Ink? Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook. Reach the author at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter at @searchanddevour.