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Peshawar: Home to unique culinary gems

A view of the Peshori Khalis Foods shop. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
A view of the Peshori Khalis Foods shop. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
Workers cooking and selling Halwa Puri at Pesho Khalis Food shop in Peshawar. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
A worker serving a Kabuli Pulao dish to his customers at Baba Wali Afghan Restaurant in Peshawar. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
A view of mutton hotels in Namak Mandi. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
Gula Jan cooking Chapli Kebab in Peshawar Saddar. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
Muhammad Irfan at his shop selling Paya. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
A view of a dry fruit shop in Namak Mandi. (Photo by Shahid Shalmani)
PESHAWAR: As the day comes to an end, life begins at Peshawar’s Namak Mandi market, which is famous throughout Pakistan and beyond for its tasty mutton.
More than 30 hotels offer mutton in Namak Mandi. Shahreyar, manager of the Iqbal Tikka Karahi, told Arab News that people from all over Pakistan and even foreigners visit the hotel for its mutton.
Waris Khan, who works at the Azam Shinwari Tikka Karahi, told Arab News that the hotel goes through three to four sheep per day during winter.
Abdullah, a businessman from Punjab, said he likes to eat at Namak Mandi each time he visits Peshawar.
“If one visits Peshawar without tasting Namak Mandi’s mutton, it’s as if one’s tour of the city is incomplete,” he told Arab News.
Fish in Qissa Khwani
The Qissa Khwani bazaar is famous for its fish and chicken, and houses more than a dozen restaurants.
The proprietor of Al-Sheikh Chargha Houae, Sheikh Attiqur Rehman, told Arab News that the restaurant, which was established 43 years ago by his father, caters not only to locals but also to people from rural areas.
The manager of a hotel said it sells around 40kg of roasted fish daily.
Kabuli Pulao
Kabuli Pulao is another popular dish, having originated in Afghanistan. It consists of rice mixed with raisins, carrots and lamb or beef pieces.
Bahaud Din, who manages the Baba Wali Afghan hotel in Peshawar, told Arab News: “My father opened the first hotel offering Kabuli Pulao decades ago when he moved from Afghanistan to Pakistan.” He said the dish used to cost 6 Pakistani rupees (0.06 cents), but now costs 240 rupees.
Chapli kebab
Another traditional food of Peshawar is Chapli kebab, comprising ground beef mixed with various spices.
There are a number of Peshawar hotels famous for Chapli kebab, including Toray Kababi, Jalil Kababi and Umar Kabab.
Paya
Paya, a famous food in Peshawar, means feet in the local language and consists of the legs of buffalos, cows or goats cooked in different spices. It takes nine to 10 hours to cook, hotel manager Muhammad Irfan told Arab News.
Halwa Puri
Halwa Puri is a popular breakfast dish consisting of thin bread cooked in ghee, along with halwa and chickpea curry.
More than 30 outlets sell the dish, but Peshori Khalis Foods in particular, established in 1935, is famous for using pure ghee to prepare it.

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