The neon blue lights are a little painful to the eyes and the strings of tiny blue bulbs are a tad inelegant, but do not judge a restaurant by it’s tasteless exteriors. This cozy Pakistani restaurant near the Karama Metro Station in Dubai is a little piece of heaven for meat lovers.
Dum Pukht is a traditional and old cooking technique in India and Pakistan that dates back to at least 200 years back. It means slow oven or slow cooking—cooking on very low flame, mostly in sealed containers, allowing the meats to cook, as much as possible, in their own juices and bone-marrow.
The eight of us—my family, in-laws, and a friend—decided on this Pakistani restaurant out of the blue. Have you already noticed the color pattern here? The restaurant is called Dum Pukht Biryani Restaurant, but we refrain from ordering biryani because when it comes to this royal dish, we become very choosy.
The place is half full when we arrive on a Saturday evening. I notice a group of four Lebanese women sitting at a corner table, enjoying a plate of BBQ. An old Urdu ghazal is playing softly. The interiors are nice, clean and comfy, although it definitely lack the Pakistani decor that I was expecting.
Food and Drinks:
Lemon Soda. It tastes of lemon juice, 7-UP, and black salt. It’s quite a refreshing drink, actually. And the sweetness is jut right. Everyone likes it. AED 7
Mix Plate Kabab. Meat is marinated and grilled so well, each bite bursts with flavors. I believe it took only two minutes for these tender pieces of juiciness to disappear from the surface of the earth. We literally attack it! AED 35
Maghaz Masala. This is basically goat’s brain that has been slowly cooked with sweet caramelized onions, spicy green chilies, powdered spices, ginger, and fresh aromatic herbs. For those who haven’t tried this type of dish yet, it’s creamy and hot.
“We’ll order one maghaz masala, please,” Saima tells the waiter. “Um, how many brains are there in one order?” The rest of us begin giggling at this point, amused by her question.
“Well…actually…there are two,” replies the waiter. “You see, it’s not easy to offer this dish in restaurants because it’s difficult to find brains in Dubai.”
His comment made us guffaw shamelessly.
The restaurant’s maghaz masala disappoints us, however. It tastes bland. AED 30
Tawa Qeema. Mince meat fried in a deep pan with onions, tomatoes, spices, and green chilies. This is good. AED 26
Lahori Chicken Charga. This is the best dish of the evening! This piece of chicken has been marinated, probably overnight, in a mix of yogurt, lemon juice, ginger/garlic paste, salt, garam masala, cumin and red chili powder. It is steamed until the meat is half-cooked, and then submerged in oil for a quick deep-frying. Finally, chat masala powder and lemon juice is sprinkled on top. Yum! I would return to Dum Pukht Restaurant anytime for this! AED 35
Although I’m not a fan of their curries, I would definitely return for their kababs and chicken charga!
Parking (located opposite Sunrise Supermarket in Karama) is free on Thursdays and Fridays. It’s tough to get parking space on a week night.
Dum Pukht Biryani Restaurant – 3371 782