Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Café Pakeezah

Supermarket cafeterias are not the sort of places I visit very often when in search of gastronomic experiences.  Sausage, chips and beans, egg and water cress sandwich’s and 3week old slices of lemon meringue pie are not my idea of yummy fodder.

However, Pakeezah, who run a brace of Asian supermarkets in Bradford, do things a little differently with their Café Pakeezah concept.

The branch off Thornton Road is essentially like every other supermarket… it sells stuff stacked up on shelves!  However, it’s when you venture down the Food2Go and the café area that things start to get interesting.   You are greeted with a supermarketesque deli/curry counter – but massive - where all and sundry can be viewed for you pleasure, including all the curries, starters and sweets.  It’s a curry lover’s heaven.

From here you can simply choose your curry and take it away, or opt to dine in the café.  It’s now thing’s take a rather splendid turn.  Because once in the café area, with it’s trendy high sided booths, it is difficult to remember that you’re in a supermarket at all.  It’s all proper, with menus and waiters, etc.  No sliding a plastic tray’s here.

Izzy and me order samosa Chaat, Lamb and Spinach (although we were served Chicken and Spinach??) and a garlic Naan.

I wasn’t sure what to expect – probably just quickly micro waved food in a bowl.  But oh no, proper sizzling hot curry in a balti dish and fresh naan.  The curry was excellent and top end restaurant standard easily, and all for £4.50!  £3.95 to take away or ~£50 for 60 protions!!  Yes you can buy you curry from Pakeezah in portions of 60!).  The naan was up there with the best too – very fresh and garlicy.  However, it was the samosa chaat that really struck a chord with me.  I spotted it advertised on a poster in the window – and not every having tried it before I thought it’d be good.  It looked yoghurty too so thought it would be good for Izzy.  The dish came with two warm, stuffed to the gills, tasty meat somosas, smothered in what I assume was the chaat.  The chaat, from what I could tell, comprised chickpea and potato curry, yoghurt and was topped with tamarind sauce, garam masala and fresh chilli’s!!  Please excuse my ignorance if this isn't correct.  As it turned out it wasn’t for Izzy either, but I loved it.  It was the kind of sweet/sour/hot/cold combo that attacks all your taste buds – it was also pretty darn hot (spicy). All for the bargain price of £3.95 (£2.95 take out), and I’ll definitely re visit soon for more.
Chicken and Spinach
Samosa Chaat

Café Pakeezah is definitely worth going out of your way for I reckon – not just a supermarket café, oh no.

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