Dishes like kabab and biryani may today be considered as Indian as they get, but they did not have their origins here, as Kebapci bears testimony. This eatery offers a more traditional take on kababs, also called kepabs in countries like Turkey, and opens up to our tongues a spice palette that beckons you to expand your culinary experience.
A Turkish proto-pizza?
Yes, that’s the best description I can come up with when describing what Lamb Lahmajoun is. Imagine a flatbread with fresh, delicately spiced and herbed minced lamb with onions. No cheese, no tomato sauce or anything else. Sounds to me like the beginnings of what will eventually be a pizza.
So, does it work? The soft flatbread does not interfere with the flavours of the spices, which themselves are not overpowering. Grab a piece on a plate and munch on as you binge-watch: It’s a great snack!
Of the others, the first I tasted was the Chicken Shish Tavouk. This and the other two kebap dishes were served with the traditional flatbread and potato fries.
The piece-de-resistance here was clearly the kebaps: succulent chicken cooked to melt-in-your mouth perfection, with the spices and seasoning adding a one-two punch with every bite!
Pair a piece with the flatbread and introduce a fry into the mix, and you have in your hands the recipe for a party in the mouth!
Next, the Mutton Adana Kebap. Think of this a West-Asian cousin of the seekh kabab that Indians are so used to eating. Except, the flavour palette is slightly different, and the kebap itself makes for quite a treat, especially when eaten with the accompanying flatbread! The difference in the flavour profile really comes through here.
And finally, the Mutton Inegale Kebap. Think of these like the Adana Kebap, but with a narrower flavour profile. Maybe that’s how they are supposed to be made, but to me this one was a bit of a letdown as a result of that.
It seemed that while the kebap had been seasoned well, but my tongue missed some depth in the flavouring.
Final thoughts about Kebapci
For a restaurant that has decided to put kebap in its name and use the dish left, right and centre in its advertising, Kebapci is indeed a successful venture — at least on the marketing front.
Food-wise, it may take some time before people warm up to its authentic kebaps, which may turn out to be a bit of an acquired taste for Indians who are used to so many varieties of local kababs.
However, Bengaluru is a city that is on the constant lookout for something new — culinary or otherwise. And that is where Kebapci may score as the Covid-19 pandemic, hopefully, dies down.
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