No matter how big a fan of hamburgers you may, as a Pakistani you simply cannot resist craving for it’s Pakistani version!
Whenever a friend from overseas visits, we take them on a nostalgic eating out tour, or a ‘Chefling Food Tour’ as we like to call it. Now be warned, these tours are not for the weak of stomach. They may include eating at around 3 to 4 eateries in a span of 2 hours.
This time around when Hasnain Bhai (my brother-in-law) was in town, we set out to do a burger tasting tour of Rawalpindi; cherishing the memories associated with these eateries from our school and college days. We also digressed to try few other things in between because, well, you go where your heart takes you 🙂
We also did a live feed on our Instagram at #CheflingTours – follow us!
Our tour itinerary was chosen based on closest to farthest location. The rule was to order one burger from each joint and share it among the three of us!
1. OPTP – Pakistan’s first real cheeseburger
The first time I tasted OPTP (One Potato, Two Potato) was from its outlet in Liberty Market, Lahore. It was also the first time I ever had fries with a cheese topping.
Our Chefling Tour stared by ordering OPTP’s Cheddar Cheese Melt Burger and Garlic Mayo Fries. That one bite was worth the wait and a great start. A fast food chain like OPTP still manages to keep its beef patty fresh. It tastes like meat, and the overdose of cheese makes it perfect.
The fries were covered in garlic mayonnaise and we loved it!
Polished off by us three foodies in less than 2 minutes, we headed to our next destination: Rawalpindi Saddar
2. The Anda Shami from International Burger
People who haven’t tasted this burger won’t get it, but an Anda Shami Burger is love! The bun is stuffed with shami kebab (a ground beef and lentil patty with some Asian spices). The kebabs are fried first and then layered on the bun. It is then topped with a simple omelette. The burger is served with chutni (mint yogurt sauce) and a desi ketchup (red, spicy with a hint of tomatoes).
We ordered two burgers here. Trust me, all we wanted was to stuff ourselves with just these, but we had goals to meet!
After we drove off, we realized it’s a good time to try Saddar’s famous lemon soda (We needed it!). So we visited Chota Bazaar for the famous lemony drink at the shop of Khadim Nawar Hussain. It’s very refreshing, and is among our favorite spots in the summer to drive to! We all agree that this place has the best lemon soda in Pakistan! (OK, we’re biased)
3. The Grilled Chicken Burger at Tehzeeb Bakers
Next stop, the grilled chicken from Tehzeeb Bakers. Now, the concept of modern burgers was introduced by Tehzeeb. We used to love these burgers before we tasted real burgers! This one is stacked with chicken. It contains a pulled chicken (what feels like half a kg) in spicy mayo sauce, two slices of cucumber (Yes, very strange!) and ketchup, all wrapped in a soft bun. These ingredients all go against the principles of making a good burger, and yet, it’s been one of Rawalpindi’s most loved burgers since the 90s.
After having two bites of this monster, we were done! (Not really!)
We decided to go back to Chota Bazaar and have an Orange Soda from the same shop. This version of the soda is a carbonated orange drink mixed with lemon and salt. Unique, eh?
In the same line as Khadim Nawar Hussain’s soda shop you will find two shops selling the famous dhoodh rabri. Dhoodh Rabri is basically an ice cream milkshake with ingredients intended to keep you cool on a hot summer’s day.
We already had Qulfi (ice cream) on our agenda. But on repeated requests of Shahab, and a lot of whining by me in the negative, we ended up having rabri dhoodh. I used to think it’s just milk (not my favorite drink) at the end of the day, and who could think of having a thick drink after such a heavy meal? We ordered two glasses, and to my surprise I couldn’t stop myself from drinking it! It’s now officially one of my favorite milkshakes!
Dessert time! With full stomachs and greedy eyes we made our way to Jameel Sweets for Qulfi. It’s the best summer treat!
Have a mildly crazy foodie adventure to tell? Share it with us!