Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal restaurant

Raja (Indian) – Cambridge


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HALAL STATUS Fully Halal food menu • Alcohol served

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal

Situated in the heart of Cambridge not too far from the city’s prestigious university, Raja appears, from the outside at least, to be your typical Indian curry house.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge HalalLocated on King Street, the restaurant’s decor is minimalistic in nature, with large and comfortable, shiny black upholstered seating contrasting against a white and maroon colour scheme.

And while the venue has a homely feel to it, this 40-cover eatery enticed us into visiting thanks to the clever use of stock images across its social media account.

While there’s a number of awards from a few years back proudly framed and displayed, which includes the English Curry Awards 2014’s best takeaway, the most intriguing feature is the history of the restaurant’s founder, Aminur “Raja” Rahman.


Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal mango lassi

Lassi Mango £2.95

The mango lassis were awesome, being thick and luscious, with the natural sweetness of the mangos themselves standing these in good stead.

drink Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal Fentimans

Fentimans soft drink – Sparkling raspberry, Victorian lemonade, Elderflower

This is the first time we’d tried these fruity flavoured soft drinks by Fentimans; and we were left pleasantly surprised.

Our favourite had to have been the Sparkling Raspberry, with its unmistakable berry flavour. As for the lemonade, then this was intensely sour resulting in a difference of opinion, with one Lion unable to bear it. Thankfully, the Gently Sparkling Elderflower was indeed less fizzy and mercifully mild in comparison to its citrusy counterpart.


Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal pokara

Raja Pakora – Spinich and potato infused ball, £4.90

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge HalalBelieve it or not, this Raja Pakora was the restaurant’s twist on a Scotch egg!

In this case, it was a masala-infused spinach filling, and plenty of that too, that served as a substitute to the traditional egg.

What made this a tasty little starter, and thus a great start to the review, was its golden breadcrumb exterior.

Not only was it crispy-cum-crunchy, but contained a mildly spicy mixture, which went really well with the accompanying sweet mint sauce.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal King Prawn Puree

King Prawn Puree – King prawn wrapped in Indian pancake, £5.90

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge HalalThis was an innovative little one – a deep fried King Prawn Puri.

Wrapped in a soft and crumbly pancake were beautifully cooked prawns enveloped in plenty of spicy sauce that packed quite some heat.

Thankfully, we had the aforementioned mint chutney as a sufficient counter.

A pretty good wrap considering, though one which would have been even better had the puree been slightly crispier.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal chicken

Raja Chicken – Marinated Kashmiri herbs in yogurt slow cooked in tandoor, £4.90

Yup; those quintessential marinated pieces of tandoor chicken leg quarters, bright as red, and presented, quite uniquely it has to be said, on a wooden board.

However, these were overcharred somewhat, greasy and oily, with not much meat to speak of by way of taste. And at £4.90, with some salad and a dip, most definitely over priced!


The lamb curry was overcooked and overpowering, thanks to the harsh spicy masala, which effectively needed the rice and the sweet mint sauce to help temper things.

The base had a tomato-like taste to it, making this quite unmemorable.

Onion BhajiAubergine PakoraPapadumRiceSauce
Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal

Onion Bhaji

While it could have been thicker to help coat and perhaps mask the oiliness of the onion bhaji, the sweet mint sauce was pretty good, considering the circumstances.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal aubergine pakora

Aubergine Pakora

Although the aubergine pakora was certainly better then its bhaji counterpart, only by a tad mind you, it was again oily in texture.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal papadum


How do papadums come out with burnt edges, was the conundrum that faced us when coming face to face with this solitary excuse for textural contrast.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal


Perfectly cooked rice; fluffy and straight-grained. Sadly, the most well executed part of this Raja Dinner!

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal

Lime Chutney

While this could have been slightly thicker in consistency, what we enjoyed about this was the sweet edge this lime chutney had.


Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal Vegetable biryani £9.90

Vegetable biryani £9.90

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge HalalThere is such a thing as an overly moist biryani.

Not only was the masala base almost wet in consistency, perhaps owing to the vegetables used therein, but intensely strong too.

In fact, the spices were so powerful that one Lion simply couldn’t take it after a couple of spoonfuls.

The other Lion only managed this with the entire contents of the yoghurt raita this came with.

Had this been done better, then we might have appreciated the unique combination of the mushrooms, beans and aubergines.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal

Mum’s Fish Curry – Salmon fried lightly in tumeric and garlic. Served in a sauce of vine tomatoes and spinich, £12.90

With a mildly spicy base, the overcooked salmon in this Mum’s Fish Curry was entirely lost in translation.

And the addition of spinich with salmon is another combination that will probably end up dividing the crowd.


Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal

Raja Nan (Keema) £3.50

The keema-based Raja naan wasn’t very well executed, with the mince meat filling spread across sparingly, the edges of the naan thick, and the entire thing not being very crispy at all.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal Peshwari Naan £3.20

Peshwari Naan £3.20

The peshwari naan, on the other hand, was okay, although we’ve had better. What this needed was more of the coconut. And similar to the above, the perimeter was thick and almost dough-like in texture, making it inedible, with the rest being almost entirely non-crispy.


Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal restaurant Pesta Kulfi £4

Pesta Kulfi £4

Despite the taste of this pistachio Kulfi being decent enough, with the scattered almonds giving some texture, the kulfi itself was evidently straight out the freezer before being plonked on a plate.

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal Gulab Jaman £4

Gulab Jaman £4

Raja Restaurant Indian Cambridge Halal The staple of gulab jaman was served up way too hot for our liking.

Nevertheless, the intriguing thing with Raja’s version was that these were stuffed with a pistachio.

And though said stuffing didn’t really add much, given its overall sweetness, these balls had good flavour to them, with the pistachio coming through nicely.

In addition, they were properly saturated and floating in that familiar sweet syrup we all enjoy.

3 FTL's Roar
4.5 Pride's Roar (2 Roars)
Alcohol/ Pork?
  • YES/ NO
Last Checked: 26/04/19
What impressed us with Raja was that they attempted to think slightly outside of the norm, when it came to those traditional Indian dishes one would otherwise encounter at any other curry house.

And while a number of the dishes could have been better executed, there were a few here that had been tweaked enough to be described as modern Indian, such as the Raja Pakora, which was their take on the classic Scotch egg, or the King Prawn Puree.

With a traditional homely feel to the place, we'd recommend opting for mains other than the ones we had.

Menu Recommendation

Drink - Lassi Mango

Starter - Raja Pakora/ King Prawn Puree

Dessert - Gulab Jaman

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60 King St, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire CB1 1LN.

T: +44 (0)1223 301501 | W: rajarestaurant.com

Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 17:00-23:00

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