Situated in the bustling heart of Karachi’s Saddar area, Burns Road offers a huge variety of local food and drinks. With many famous and unique restaurants that feature their own specialty dishes, the road is a must-see for curious eaters and food-lovers. Snacks, meals, desserts and drinks are all available. Many places on the street are open during the day but like Karachi itself, Burns Road truly comes alive at night.
Often pronounced “Buns” road locally, the street also offers some other interesting sights and services apart from the authentic and traditional food. Taking a walk down it and sampling the cuisine is a fun and essential way to get a taste of Karachi.
A chef prepares “kat-a-kat” a dish that combines mutton or lamb meat with kidney, heart, and other unusual delicacies. The ingredients are cooked on a “tawa” – a kind of flat wok. As they slowly sizzle the chef uses his knives to rapidly chop them into fine a piece, making the unique “kat-a-kat!” sound which gives the dish its name.
A fried-fish stand sells raw and cooked fish. The fish is marinated in spicy “masala” and then batter-fried to make a delicious and easy meal.
Chicken “Sajji” is made with whole chickens and barbecued on an open fire. A nearly done Chicken “Sajji” recieves a final glaze over the fire before being served. The chicken is usually eaten with Naan-bread and raita (mint yogurt dip) or even rice.
Dehli Rabri House has been serving the “Famous Burns Road Rabri” since 1964. Rabri is a very sweet dessert made from condensed milk cream and butter.
Tied clay bowls of “Firni” are piled in a basket for sale. Firni or “Kheer” is a kind of rice-pudding that is eaten cool and tastes mild and sweet, a perfect light dessert after a heavy Burns Road meal.
A heavy meal in Karachi is often followed by a trip to the “Paan Shop”. Paan is said to help digestion and freshen breath. Here the owner of ‘Noora Paan Shop’ jokes with his regulars as he makes them their favorite paans. A paan can contain many varying ingredients with tastes ranging from sweet to bitter, all wrapped in a fragrant betel leaf and served to be eaten in one bite. Common paan ingredients include areca nuts, lime paste, and tobacco.