Restaurant Review: Legacy on a platter in Ashiana

Enjoy the nostalgia of traditional Awadhi cuisine at this Dubai restaurant


Somya Mehta

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Published: Wed 4 May 2022, 10:43 PM

When it comes to food, we all know it is a time-tested way to preserve a culture’s true legacy from one generation to the next. So, when a restaurant brings this to the fore, you know you’re in for a delicious ride filled with nostalgia. Ashiana, which reopened its doors on March 15, offers just that and more. In a new avatar, the restaurant flaunts fresh interiors, while retaining its old-world charm, drawing the diners in for an immersive culinary ride. An award-winning restaurant that has developed its footing alongside the growth of the city, Ashiana has been serving traditional Awadhi food for over 30 years in the Dubai neighbourhood of Garhoud. While different from Mughlai cuisine, Awadhi flavours boast the traditional culinary legacy of the city of Nawabs, Lucknow, India.

What’s fascinating is that the place preserves Awadhi classics such as Lucknowi Galouti Kebabs, Tangdi Kebabs, Bharwan Seekh Kebabs, while introducing fun, modern concepts such as Quinoa Kebabs and Pinwheel Samosa. For starters, we started with North Indian cult food AKA chaat, kickstarting our dining experience with their Gol Gappa (read Panipuri), While Awadhi cuisine is known for its succulent meat flavours, there are ample vegetarian options to balance out the meat-based dishes. Their Quinoa Kebab gives a tough competition to its meat counterparts and the Tulsi Paneer Tikka features melt-in-your-mouth basil-sautéed cottage cheese, with a pleasant kick.

Their main course, too, is filled with exquisite Awadhi dishes, some of which are hard to find in Dubai’s otherwise expansive dining scene. Dishes like Awadhi Ghosht Dum Biryani, Lucknowi Raan and Laal Maas will be a delight for people who’ve been longing to experience the traditional flavours of these celebrated dishes. Their Ashiana signature Dal Maharani is a must-try for those of you that make your way to this restaurant. The slow-cooked urad dal (black lentils) and rajma (kidney beans) enriched with fresh cream and ghee (clarified butter) is their star dish, bringing the true-blue Awadhi experience of cooking with the luxury of time, with steadfast attention to finer details. Lastly, don’t miss out on their fusion dessert concepts that delicately marry eastern flavours to western preparations. Whether it’s the Rasmalai Cheesecake or Saffron and Cardamom Crème Brûlée, they’ve got all your sugar cravings covered.

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