A Very Kebabish Afternoon

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Here’s a small eatery that claims big flavour and specialty in their menu, the KEBABS! This new restaurant has opened up on Mount Road called ‘Kebabistaan.’

Text: Mallika Chaudhuri

The menu was quite elaborate with a focus on chicken, but also had a few varieties of fish and prawn as well as a mutton option. Personally, having grandparents that lived in Delhi and living in Dubai for a better part of my life and eating Kebabs from the motherland of Mughal and Arabian Cuisine, I have to say, the juicy tidbits of meat are usually mutton for me, but it was interesting to see the variety of chicken in their menu.

We tried a bunch of their dishes, Paneer Tikka was quite nice with a nice marinade that was not too spicy or ever cooked, the Paneer was soft and the most interesting thing about the plate was this fluffy Egyptian style pita bread that was toasted with butter, seriously the fluff points on this pita bread was like 100 on 10! It was perfect because a true kebab enthusiast will always eat the morsels of grills with a Rumali Roti or a Pita bread as per tradition. I truly enjoyed balancing out the flavours of tandoori spices with the fluffy soft pita bread that is apparently their signature recipe.

We had a lemon, mint and honey cooler which again is a signature recipe that was very soothing and probably was lining my tummy for the culmination of spices that was yet to come on to my plate. Malai and Banjara Kebabs were interesting and perfectly cooked, and the chicken was tender. Their manager informed us that their poultry was organic and therefore the meat itself was different to taste. Here it was cooked very well and the marinades were different. The Kalmi Chicken kebab Biryani had a completely different taste and the rice was very light and fragrant. One thing I noticed was that the spices in the biryani rice were blended and then mixed in the rice. I know this because when I used to own the Anglo Aunty’s Takeaway, we used the same method in the Anglo Biryani. Each grain of rice seeps into the flavour of the masalas in comparison to whole spices added into the biryani to add essence of the spice but in unequal measures, leaving certain areas of biryani rice with flavour and other areas missing out on it. I enjoyed eating the Kalmi chicken biryani because the spices were evenly distributed and you could taste it in every grain of rice. Although it is very different from the regular biryani you get in Chennai.

We also tried a couple of seafood options from their menu. Their Fish tikka and their Fresh Pomfret were seriously the best dishes I had tasted among everything! The flavours still linger on my taste buds even now as I am writing this! The fish was cooked to perfection and was moist with their masalas, even though we were so full with the chicken, I could not help but finish off the morsels of fish on my plate simply because of the taste factor! The Pomfret was fresh and charged according to the size of the fish and the masala was again slightly different from the tandoori masala. For desserts they have Rabadi, Malai Matka Kulfi and of course Gulab Jamun and ice cream which were pretty good. If you are around Mount Road and hungry for some ‘kebab-centric’ food you must visit this place.

Where: Kebabistaan- 786, Anna Salai, CIT Nagar, Nandanam, Chennai, Tamil Nadu – 600035.

Meal for two: Rs 600

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