Old Delhi delicacies at home
Reviewer: Shivendu Mittal | 3rd December 2015 | Reviewer Rating (Out of 5) 4.00

Please note: This review was done on an invitation from the restaurant to taste their food, and no bill was presented to the author. While the author assures you of objectivity, the review may be influenced by the personalized attention the author got.

The other day I got a chance to taste a few delicacies from the now popular Zareenís Dastarkhwaan. Zareen is a home chef, who churns out delicious Mughlai and Awadhi dishes from her home kitchen and supplies to Gurgaon and South Delhi. It was the onset of winters so I was longing for some paya soup and as it happened, Zareen sent across the Buff Paya along with some other preparations to my place and it was just what I had been looking for.

The Buff Paya was just as it should be, thin, soupy, sticky and subtly spiced so that you can actually taste the meat and marrow and not some strong spice. Nothing can beat the taste of a dish cooked with patience and you could actually taste the patience gone into the dish as you bit into it. Of course, there is nothing suble about eating a paya and I enjoyed chewing the bones long after the marrow was gone.

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The Nahari is traditionally beef/buff cooked overnight in specially created masalas for the dish and the final outcome is that the meat is so tender, that you can takea bite off with a plastic spoon. This Nahari, although made from goat meat, was everything that you ask for in a Nahari and more. Again the gravy was not overloaded with spices and the meat was cooked to perfection. The thinish gravy was mouthwatering and perfect in consistency. I can have such Nahari every day without guilt as there was very little added oil and it was cooked with patience in its own juices. Of course, being red meat, the juices have a fair amount of fat, but in my experience, that is very easy to digest and is not hard on the system, unlike added oils.

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The Mutton Korma was a decent preparation, cooked in traditional khada masalas, garnished with nuts. While the dish was good, but this is one dish that you want to eat once in a while only, as it was too heavy. I personally donít like nuts in food, and that also acted as a deterrent for me to dig into the dish beyond a couple of bites. Having said that, there was nothing wrong in the dish in terms of cooking. Maybe it was the awesomeness was the previous two dishes, maybe I was too full, but I have had better korma.

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The khamiris and sheermals were outsourced by her and they go as a perfect accompaniments for such lovely non veg dishes. Just dip the khamiri in the gravy/soup and you have a juicy morsel in your hand ready to pop in your mouth.

The phirni, the one bite that I forced myself to eat (why ruin the taste in your mouth with sugar after such a lovely, flavourful meal) was creamy in texture and suitably sweet.

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All in all, a good deal, sitting at home and enjoying old Delhi delicacies without the crowd and the hassle.

About the Author
Shivendu Mittal Shivendu Mittal
Restaurant Information
Zareens Dastarkhwan Zareens Dastarkhwan
Jamia Nagar, Delhi
Telephone: 09250219389 view on a map
Opening Hours:
Cuisine: Mughlai
Average Price: Rs. 400 - 600