Cafe Reviews

Khyber Halal: Three Cuisines in One

Khyber Halal is a culinary crossroads of sorts. A unique mix of the familiar and the unexplored, this casual spot in Phoenix features foods from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and India, where each nation's cuisine is as diverse as the restaurant's staff of family members.

"Pakistani dishes take longer to prepare, are spicier, and have more ingredients than Afghani ones," says Mohammad Safi, who co-owns Khyber Halal with his sister, Fahima Hassan. "Afghani food is simpler and uses lamb instead of goat."

From flavorful bowls of rusty red chicken tikka masala, plates of rich goat biryani, and Afghani specialties like yogurt-topped eggplant and giant potato pancakes, chances are, at this casual, friendly spot in Central Phoenix, you'll find something worth returning for.

Here's an excerpt from this week's review:

"For carnivores traveling in packs, there is Khyber Halal's mixed grill platter. At $20, this share-worthy dish features four Afghani- and Pakistani-style kebabs served over a mound of rice and alongside a refreshing pico de gallo-like side of diced vegetables. It may be the best deal on the menu. The default meats, save for the overcooked and barely seasoned lamb (which can, and should be substituted with another selection), are excellent: seared chunks of fiery red spicy chicken boti; zesty green chicken mali boti, whose heat is less pronounced; and a simply seasoned and oniony minced beef sheesh kebab, whose long, flat shape runs the width of the platter."

Hungry for more? Read my full review of Khyber Halal.

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Laura Hahnefeld
Contact: Laura Hahnefeld