Restaurant food does not need to be expensive to be good. Afghani restaurant, Bakhtar in Liverpool, illustrates this point rather admirably.
I popped back in recently for a dinner which set me back thirty-six bucks for two people, including a (non-alcoholic) drink each.
Sitting at a plastic-covered table in their chocolate brown and lime green dining room, decorated with neo-chandeliers and elaborate tasseled cream curtains, we tucked into three dishes for our under forty-buck spend.
The centrepiece of our meal was the Mix Plate Kebab ($17) that comes with a basket of piping hot Afghani bread. Arriving in a waft of fresh bread that’ll make your mouth water, the large round flatbreads are cooked on the wall of a tandoor oven.
As for the kebabs, it’s really hard to identify a favourite between the turmeric marinated chook kebab, that’s moist and juicy inside and charry on the edges, and the lamb tikka kebab marinated in cumin, yoghurt, garlic and lemon juice. The tubular lamb and beef mince kebab - kebab koobideh - is strongly flavoured with paprika and garlic, so eats best wrapped up in flatbread with sumac sprinkled washed red onions and crisp, golden pickles.
Flavoured with dried lime, Qorma Sabzi ($7) is a curry quite unlike any of its Indian cousins. It’s got an almost tannic edge, like green tea, against kidney beans, green herbs (dill and coriander) and small pieces of lamb.
I use it as a dipping sauce for my Bolani ($5) – fried bread stuffed with potatoes and chives – that also came with spicy tomato and yoghurt dips if you prefer. All up, this was quite the feast for two people, with change from forty bucks. It's also across the road from the movies, if you prefer real food over eating Westfield rubbish.
Shop 8/48 Elizabeth Street, Liverpool
Ph: (02) 8798 2795
NOTE: See a previous review for this restaurant back HERE.