ADELAIDE | Zelmai and Farida Ayubi, owners of Parwana Afghan Kitchen, fled the war in Afghanistan in 1987 with their five children. The family opened Parwana in 2009, and it’s been consistently busy ever since.
The restaurant offers an assortment of dumplings, stews and grilled meats, with everything being built around rice. I love rice, but until I visited Iran, I didn’t realise just how much of a star rice can be. Eating at Parwana, I experienced this same thrill. Food like this works best when eaten as a group. There’s a lot that’s delicious, and the servings are generous. I observed tables full of families and friends enjoying themselves, while waiting in the corner for my takeaway order, sipping on my sour cherry sharbat (a traditional Afghan drink made with sour cherry syrup and basil seeds).
As soon as I got to the Airbnb, I tussled tougher some ad hoc plating with what I could find, and then dug in I only ordered two dishes, one a recommendation from my friend Ian Callahan, the other a recommendation of the waiter. Both weak at the knees, need to sit down spectacular. Banjaan Borani, Parwana’s signature eggplant simmered in fresh tomato sauce, topped with garlic yoghurt and fresh mint, and palaw, aged long-grain rice, topped with caramelised carrots, sultanas, slivered almonds and pistachios.
Next time I’m in Adelaide, I’m booking in advance, coming with friends, and ordering all of the things.
Parwana Afghan Kitchen
124B Henley Beach Road
South Australia 5031
Telephone: (08) 8443 9001
Sun, Tue – Thu: 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Fri – Sat: 6:00pm to 10:30pm