Afghan Durbar (Saket, Delhi)


In a nutshell:

Very ‘different but similar’ tasting Afghani food served by Afghan Nationals living in Delhi who cannot speak anything other than Afghani.

The facade & shop board

Address & other details : 36F Hauz Rani, Malviya Nagar – At the Traffic crossing of Press Enclave Marg & the road that runs besides DLF Place Mall, Saket.

Meal for 2: Rs. 300 onwards

Cuisine Type: Vegetarian & Nonvegetarian

Short Description – In case u r in a hurry:

Read about this place from a post by our friend  Chowder Singh. So went to try out.

Very nice ambience. Almost six to eight guests were seated on tables & chairs. One guest was sitting & eating on a special makhmal gaddi seat with folded legs .

picture on the menu card cover

Two Afghan guys were the hosts – We found them quite shy as they were talking in their language & not making eye contact with us even after noticing us walk into the restaurant . As we took a seat, we watched the two Afghans talk & it seemed from gesture that one was asking the other to hurry up. We slowly started getting bewildered, as to whether anyone will come at all…………& Then came an Indian Chhotu who knew Hindi. Came to know that these Afghans cannot speak Indian languages but they r running their business from here. Chhotu used to work at their house years back & that is how they picked up Afghani language. So chhotu has a better occupation nowadays.

Afghani momo kind of food – called mantu

Had some unique Afghani momos called Mantu, very good Kabuli Uzbeki mutton pulao, good but not great Boran baingan & Saalan baamia okra and some traditional Afghani bread – taftan.

Detailed Description – in case u have the time to enjoy reading:


As recommended by our friend, we tried Mantu. It was a kind of mutton mince momo with topping of yoghurt, chana daal & garnished with a dark brown masala & corainder leaves. The filling was very nice & flavorful. Overall this dish was different from any momo or dimsum dish that I have ever had. I was unique & enjoyable – but surely not the best among the dimsums or momos I have had so far. Wud like to eat this again.

Close up of Mantu

We went for a mutton biryani – Kabuli Uzbeki mutton pulao. It had ‘seasoned pieces of lamb under a mound of delicately seasoned browned Basmati rice topped with carrots & lots of raisins’ as per the menu card. Very unique & different from all Biryanis I have had so far. The lamb pieces were succulent & super soft melt in the mouth – much beyond my expectattions, had a very strong flavor & excelent taste – better than the best mutton pieces in Biryani I have had so far – Arsalan Kolkata.

Afghani Mutton Pulao

The rice however was not great – It was not as soft as that of Arsalan or Aafreen or Tunday’s or Kainoosh. The flavors were also less. The rice grains were slightly smaller than the ones used by our Biryani masters in Lucknow or kolkata. The rice was also less aromatic. However the profuse use of raisins & dry fruits gave a very unique enjoyable taste to this Pulao.

Overall, loved the Biryani (pulao) as it is. Since I have not been to Afghanstan & do not know what their authentic mutton pulao is, the earlier paragraph tried to compare it with a conceptually similar dish ‘Biryani’ that we get to eat here in India.

We were also served a vegetarian dish Boran baingan – it was fried slices of .brinjal (aubergine) with garlic sour cream sauce & dried mint. Good, as it is but not outstanding.

Saalan baamia okra was another vegetarian dish with Okra (ladysfinger), tomato sauce & onions. It was also good – a bit on the sour side though.

Taftaan was the thick tandoored bread that was served with all this. It was fluffy, nice & tasty. It had interesting patterns made on them.

taaftan

They make some very good kababs & we are yet to try them. Look forward to trying those soon & updating this post.

Surely try out this place if u want to have a unique experience of local food of another Nation, served by the people of that Nation, while sitting in ur own country.

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