A slice of India in these pies

What happens when one of the city's best Indian restaurants takes over a defunct pizzeria next door? Pizzas topped with butter chicken curry and saag paneer?

It sounds like the punch line to a joke about fusion food, but that's exactly what's coming out of the pizza ovens at Tiffin Etc., and it's no joke - this novel combination of disparate ethnic flavors is unexpectedly intriguing. Tiffin owner Munish Narula uses a traditional house-made Italian pizza dough and fresh mozzarella, but everything else comes straight from the subcontinent of Tiffin's kitchen next door, albeit tweaked for maximum pop on a pie. My favorites so far have been the creamy tomato curry and tender meat of butter chicken ("Murgh Makhni"), the cuminy crumbles of ground lamb over minty cilantro-almond pesto, and the spicy creamed spinach of the saag paneer. Wash them down with a lemony nimbu pani soda (or better yet, mango lassi spiced with green chiles) and give the old pizza party a taste of Bollywood.

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MICHAEL BRYANT / Staff Photographer

- Craig LaBan

Indian pizzas ($4.95 for small, $8.95 for large), Tiffin Etc.,

712 W. Girard Ave., 215-922-1297.