Faheem Fast Food, Enmore

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Pakistani and Indian cuisine is some­what of a new comer to my pal­ate. Indeed, cur­ries didn’t really fea­ture much in my diet until the last few years. We whet our pal­ate with the sweeter cur­ries in Japan laden with potato and hunks of meat, before Malaysian and Thai res­taur­ants became a some­what reg­u­lar haunt as I star­ted my new job. Then, N and T dis­covered Paradise Biryani and their ver­sion of but­ter chick­en had me converted.

So these days, I’m much more open to the idea of eat­ing cur­ries. Even in non-descript places like Faheem Fast Food.

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The name, Faheem Fast Food, doesn’t mar­ket itself as a din­ner des­tin­a­tion, and neither do the met­al chairs stained with curry. N, how­ever, is a reg­u­lar here, so D and I agree to join her and T.

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This is the aloo gos­ht ($12) — ‘diced beef cooked with pota­toes, ori­ent­al herbs and spices’. I love potato in my cur­ries, but unfor­tu­nately, this one was a dis­ap­point­ment. The hunks were huge, as if they found the wax­i­est pota­toes and quartered them and dropped three of those quar­ters into the bowl, barely cooked and soak­ing up none of the curry. The diced beef was tender, but I expec­ted more from a beef curry. As for the curry itself, we felt it lacked the bold and dis­tinct fla­vours we’re used to in Indian curries.

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Next up, nev­er to pass up on egg­plant, is the aloo baigan ($11) — ‘egg­plant and pota­toes cooked with tomato, vari­ety of medi­um spices and herbs’. If the pota­toes made the aloo gos­ht a dis­ap­point­ment, it was repeated here, but all the more so, because it was also sorely lack­ing in egg­plant — most of it had turned to mush, and we could only spot two pieces of egg­plant skin — and pad­ded up with mushy green cap­sic­um. Potatoes aside, I’d have liked the curry more without the cap­sic­um and with egg­plant that had actu­al bite.

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Our third curry is the but­ter chick­en ($12) — ‘mar­in­ated bone­less chick­en fil­lets cooked in Tandoor and mixed with creamy tomato sauce’.

The but­ter chick­en here is noth­ing like the one at Paradise Biryani. From an epis­ode where Heston Blumethal heads to India for research into cre­at­ing the ‘per­fect but­ter chick­en’, the ver­sion at Faheems would be the more authen­t­ic Indian ver­sion; the ver­sion at Paradise Biryani is some­thing you find only in the West.

That said, I’m going to com­pare the two any­way — the one at Faheems is tangi­er without the sweet­ness or cream­i­ness of the one at Paradise Biryani. The chick­en pieces weren’t many but they did soak up some fla­vour from the curry. But again, what’s with the cap­sic­um float­ing around the bowl?

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The star of the din­ner was prob­ably the chick­en tikka ($13 for four pieces). It was quite spicy — spi­ci­er and with more heat and fla­vour than any of the cur­ries. And that was the over­all impres­sion of the cur­ries — they lacked fla­vour and all tasted much the same.

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We go with naans ($2.50 each) to dip in the cur­ries rather than rice. These were quite doughy and dense, which N liked. I’d have pre­ferred them a bit lighter.

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A mint yoghurt salad is com­ple­ment­ary, but the cur­ries lacked heat to really need cool­ing yoghurt.

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Anticipating spi­ci­er and hot­ter cur­ries, we try their mango lassi ($4.50) — ‘tra­di­tion­al Indian cool yoghurt, sug­ar with mango’. It tastes as you’d expect mango yoghurt, noth­ing amazing.

Overall, D and I were dis­ap­poin­ted with our exper­i­ence at Faheem Fast Food. They say it’s as authen­t­ic as you can get Indian and Pakistani food in Sydney — and a major haunt for taxi drivers — so maybe we just don’t have the pal­ate for authen­t­ic Indian and Pakistani food.

Faheem Fast Food is loc­ated at 194 – 196 Enmore Rd, Enmore NSW 2042.