Eating up Pakistan


The food here has been great. The lack of tourist infrastructure means we have basically always eaten where locals eat, but the fare has been consistently good and we’re yet to get sick from it. Key menu items for us, and everyone else, are:

  • Curry: beef, chicken, mixed vegetables or dhal. It’s ubiquitous and we don’t go a day without it. To use a Wellington reference point, Pakistani curry is more oily like Satay Kingdom than creamy like Tulsi. It isn’t soupy. Meat is generally left on the bone. It’s not like there’s a big menu offering tikka masala, korma and dopiaza. There’s just curry.
  • Barbeque, known as tikka here: almost as common as curry, but less likely to be cooked at home. We’ve enjoyed chicken, mutton chops and beef kebabs. The best stuff is amazing, tender and well spiced. The worst stuff has unexpected offal. But it’s all pretty goo.
  • Biryani: This is a spiced rice dish coloured yellow with turmeric. It generally has some meat, maybe nuts and raisins. Fiona isn’t a massive fan, but it’s the main way we get rice. We’ve eaten plain white rice with curry once in Pakistan, much more common is…
  • Bread: Chapattis are plain, unleavened breads and they’re everywhere. Parratha are like chapattis but fried in oil. Naan is cooked in an oven. Conveniently they’ve found a way to make it round and with a kind of beehive pattern indented in the middle which makes it easy to tear and dip in your curry.
  • Drink  options are limited. Several times we’ve thought what an awesome addition a Kingfisher would be to a meal, but that’s a no go. Soft drinks tend to be the order of the day. Mountain Dew, just called “dew” is among the most popular and the pepsi range beats out coke.

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