Any readers been to Parwana Afghan Restaurant on Henley Beach Road yet? They’ve amassed a massive rating (93%) on Urbanspoon with a total of 683 votes (to date) and 74 reviews… and it was only last week that we finally made our way there to suss out the restaurant and try Afghan food.
Parwana may be located on a main road but if you’re not on the lookout for its premises, you’d be sure to miss it. The family run restaurant was mid sized and felt homely with a few old family photos littered on their walls around the room, plate displays and old lamps. The space was dimly lit with a handful of lights, walls were of a dusty pink colour and the main door frame had a mosaic tiled border around it.
Full house at Parwana
We arrived on a Saturday night and made way to our table that I booked in advance, thankfully too cause the restaurant was filled to the brim! We were given “Friday/Saturday” menus so I’m not too sure how it works on the other days should you visit Parwana. I gave the ordering reigns to the stranger and was in for a monster feast! Even our waiter stopped him in his tracks informing that it was a lot of food for two people (heh!) but we had the option to take the rest of the food home for take away should we not finish it.
Pekowrah: traditional Afghanistan fritters made with an assortment of vegetables and spices, served with Parwana chutney; $9.00
First up, an order from their appetisers (pesh ghezah) section of vegetable fritters with chutney. Delish! Crispy fritters with a mixture of vegetables and aromatic spices paired with a fresh, light and tangy chutney.
Then the onslaught of dishes arrived!
A serving of their steamed dumplings which were stuffed with carrot and sauteed onion. The closest comparison that I can think of to these dumplings would be the steamed dumplings ‘mandoo‘ (look, they sound the same) at Mandoo Korean Dumplings, particularly the dumpling skin more so than the filling. The mantu’s skin were slightly thicker and firmer and the dumplings were more of a ‘looser’ shape and softer filling. The meat was in the sauce which topped the dumplings and was dressed with garlic yoghurt with a heavy sprinkle of paprika and mint. Mmmm~
Kabuli palaw: an aged long grain rice topped with caramelised carrots, sultanas, slivered almonds and pistachios; $18.00
Afghan style rice (palaw) with caramelised shredded carrots, sweet sultanas and nuts of slivered almonds and pistachios. So good! The rice was so fragrant and the textures were delightful with each mouthful. Sultanas in rice… genius idea!
Banjaan borani: eggplant slices simmered in a fresh tomato sauce, topped with garlic yoghurt dressing and garnished with paprika and mint; $14.00
An order of Parwana’s signature dish, their eggplant. Delicious upon first bite, so soft and with so much flavour. But after the second and third bite, it got a bit too hard to stomach as the texture started to get overwhelming and all a bit too much… or should I say, mushy. We struggled to get through this dish and I’d recommend sharing it with a large group of people unless you’re a die hard eggplant fan.
More food, and thankfully, the last one at that.
Gosfandeh degee: lamb pieces marinated in a yoghurt, chilli and coriander sauce served with naan, salata and Parwana chutney; $25.00
The gosfandeh degee was very much an unassembled yiros on a
plate platter. We had one of everything each from the platter before admitting defeat.
Our waiter was right, we ordered way too much food between the both of us but we got to try what we wanted and went home with lunch for the day after. It’s probably best to round up a group of friends to venture here and try out their food; more to order, more to share and more to taste! We didn’t even get to dapple in their dessert menu with intriguing home made ice cream flavours of saffron, ginger and walnut, and rose and pistachio.
A great little spot for dinner with friendly and helpful staff; round up some friends and get eating! By the way, it got pretty loud in there so be prepared to raise your voice a few decibels.
Parwana Afghan Restaurant
124B Henley Beach Road
Torrensville SA 5031
P 08 8443 9001