Freddy and Faheem’s Fast Food

by Forager on August 26, 2009

World, please meet Freddy, the luckiest kid around.

A few weeks ago the Co-pilot and I caught up with good friends, Mr & Mrs LightningDB and their gorgeous little fella, Freddy. Look at those cheeks! Even I couldn’t help but coo, cluck and indulge in a bit of cheek pinching. Freddy doesn’t mind, he just smiles sweetly, his inquisitive eyes sparkling as he indulges his guests. He is quite possibly the most well behaved child I’ve ever encountered. Other than a few gurgling smiles and some energetic Tupperware rearrangement he barely makes a peep.

So that should make Mr & Mrs LightningDB the luckiest parents – how is Freddy be the luckiest kid? Well, how many babies do you know that get gourmet 4 course meals? We chatted with Mrs LightningDB as she served Freddy and realised there was a degustation in play:

creamed risotto
pureed roast lamb and vegetables
mashed vegetables

Il dulce
chilled watermelon

Mrs LightningDB is welcome to feed me anytime. Incidentally, I also noticed Freddy had 3 changes of adorable outfits during the short time we were there, no doubt influenced by Mrs LightningDB’s stylish credentials. Lucky, lucky kid. No wonder he looks confident enough to rule the world.

Watching Freddy chow down has built up our own appetites so it’s time to find dinner for ourselves. As it’s not always convenient for parents with little ones to look after to eat out at whim, but to ensure we get to catch up with our friends whilst they maintain their parental duties, we’re making it easy on everyone and getting take-away. On the cards is Faheem’s Fast Food, a Pakistani restaurant in Enmore that we’ve been meaning to check out since the Co-pilot and I went to Himalaya, another Pakistani restaurant in Five Dock. So whilst Mrs LightningDB put Freddy to bed, Mr LightningDB, the Co-pilot and I headed out to Faheem’s.

The restaurant’s simple decor and million wattage fluorescent lighting lends itself well to take-away and quick, casual meals. There are a few tables occupied with families chatting over their meals and we can’t help but peer at their selections – everything looks tasty. Like our experience at Himalaya, seeing Pakistani and Indian families dining here gives me confidence in the fare.

At the counter we see fish fillets being marinated in a tikka marinade. One of the staff skewers several pieces and pulls back the tandoor oven lid to bake them. Seeing me stand on tip-toe to peer over the counter he invites me behind the counter to peer into the furious heat of the oven. Even though he’s just put the fish fillets in, they’re already well underway to being cooked showing lots of colour and charring around the edges. It smells so good we decide to get some tandoori fish tikka along with a range of other tasty dishes. Back home with Freddy sound asleep, we unload our tasty cargo and set the table – just because it’s take-away doesn’t mean it can’t be civilised and has to be eaten out of flimsy plastic cartons. With some candles and a decent bottle of wine, it’s suddenly a lot more inviting than just simple take-away.

We have the tandoori fish tikka we saw earlier in the restaurant. The fish has been marinated with ginger, garlic and traditional spices and it’s tasty and smoky from the tandoor. I think it’s a tad too dry but I don’t mind the dish. The Co-pilot however thinks they’re too bony and have a low flesh reward to effort ratio.

Tandoori fish tikka $11.00 for 4 pieces

The tandoori chicken that I try next is tender and very robust in it’s flavour. I can’t help but compare it to the exceptional tandoori chicken I tried at Himalaya, and I have to say I think Himalaya’s version wins. Although my opinion might have been influenced by us dining in-restaurant at Himalaya and having the tandoori chicken served to us on a fiery-hot sizzling plate with the chicken smoking, spitting and enveloping us in clouds of it’s fragrant aroma.
Tandoori chicken $9.00 for half; $13.00 for full chicken

The dal palak we ordered contains mixed lentils and spinach cooked with spiced tomatoes and fresh coriander. The coriander and spinach flavours are fresh and herby with a mild chilli bite but it’s the wonderfully creamy and inexplicably light, fluffy texture that wins me over. It’s as though I’m eating a savoury whipped mousse! This one is a winner I’d be happy to order again.

Dal Palak $9.00

The saag gosht description states that it’s “tender lamb pieces cooked with spinach in a bland of medium spices“. Yes, engrish in all forms never fails to amuse me. Far from being bland, the saag gosht is salty, slightly spicy and like the dal palak, deliciously light and fluffy. The lamb pieces themselves are soft and tender, falling away at the prod of my fork without any resistance.

Saag gosht $10.00

The chickpeas dish has been cooked using fresh herbs, coriander, pureed tomatoes and is delicately spiced. The flavour is more subtle and a good contrast compared to the other strong flavours from the other dishes.

Chickpeas $9.00

The haleem contains 4 different lentil wheats cooked with a mixture of boneless beef in a traditional Pakistani hot curry and carries the inflammatory title of “king of curries”. After having been slow cooked for hours on end, the muscular integrity of the beef eventually gives way to the relentless cooking and becomes a fibrous mass intermixed with the curry. The result is a fantastic, thick, paste-like creamy consistency with the occasional pop or crunch from a round of green chilli or ginger. It’s another dish we’d tried at Himalaya but in this case, I can’t see any appreciable difference between the two. Both are excellent but despite claims that it’s a hot curry, I feel it lacks any real heat – and I’m not one to consider myself up to a chilli challenge.

Haleem (king of curry) $11.00

The meal wouldn’t be complete without the omnipresent pappadums. Salty, crisp and light – what’s not to love?

Pappadums $2.00 for 4

To end a night of great company and Freddy visiting facilitated by the excellent take-away choice, we play a friendly (but secretly competitive) game of Jenga. Pictured below is the Co-pilot nimbly selecting his Jenga piece – luckily he hasn’t inherited his Nonno’s fingers because quite frankly, those hands are great for kneading dough, but they’d be disastrous at Jenga.

Overall, we thought Faheems Fast Food served excellent fare. Whilst this is only the second Pakistani restaurant I’ve ever tried I’m not in any position to assess whether it’s authentic Pakistani cuisine or not. However, I would have thought Pakistani dishes can pack a lot of heat (all puns intended), yet, interesting all the dishes we’ve tried so far at both Himalaya and Faheem’s haven’t even come close to raising a sweat. I had great experiences at both Pakistani restaurants but if I had to differentiate, between the two, we thought the fare at Faheem’s Fast Food was better value in both price and portion and certain dishes also appeared and tasted slightly fresher. But, I’d happily dine at either again.Do you have a favourite Pakistani restaurant? Or can you attest to the authenticity of these establishments? I’d love to know your thoughts!


194-196 Enmore Road, Enmore; (02) 9550 4850 or (02) 9550 4803
Open daily for lunch and dinner from 11:00am – midnight

Foodie in the know:

The take-away curry options come with free rice – only something we discovered later as we were prompted to order additional rice and then once home discovered we had enough rice to supply a rice eating contest. It is also worth noting that Faheem’s serves 100% halal fare and consumption of alcohol is not permitted in the restaurant.

Faheem Fast Food on Urbanspoon

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella August 26, 2009 at 12:16 pm

Awww look at those cheeks! 😮 I love fat cheeked babies I have to say. It looks good-you know I never thoughtof blogging takeaway but you've done it so well I think I should! :)

2 Betty August 26, 2009 at 1:38 pm

Hehe. Freddy is adorable – those cheeks!! And a customised degustation menu – lucky indeed! I've heard about Faheem's, my friend goes there with his family every week! I should really try it out soon, you make it look & sound so delicious!

3 Fifowood August 26, 2009 at 5:47 pm

Yay, a local favourite of mine! Completely agree with the comment on the fish tikka and the bones, it's quite nice but bit of hard work picking them out. I like that you photographed away from the in-restaurant setting, it can be rather stark in there… Oh and Freddy, well, he's just gorgeous!

4 Forager August 26, 2009 at 10:56 pm

Hey Lorraine – Do it! Well blogging takeaway is fine if like in this case there was a story/reason for take-away – otherwise I guess it might be a bit strange huh?

Hey Betty – I thought it was delicious & very good value too. Both great reasons to go in my view!

Hey Fifowood – Lucky you that this is your local! Well, you are pretty spoilt for choice if you're in that area. And yes, not many can resist Freddy's charms.

5 Megan@Feasting on Art August 30, 2009 at 6:08 pm

Freddy doesn't know what he is missing!!! That chicken looks delish!

6 Forager August 31, 2009 at 11:30 am

Hey Megan – I'm sure it won't be long before Freddy is dining on Faheem's too as he's being trained to know what good food is all about!

7 Arwen from Hoglet K September 1, 2009 at 5:29 pm

Looks like a great combination of eating in and out, especially since you have time to play with the baby and play games. The meat sounds perfectly tender, and the creamy daal palak must have been amazingly light.

8 Forager September 3, 2009 at 6:41 pm

Hey Arwen – it was delicious! In fact, so good I had to go again after writing up this post! And it might interest you to know that it's gluten intolerant diet friendly as Mrs Lightning DB is gluten intolerant :)

9 Guest September 5, 2009 at 9:36 am

precious kid and excellent food–just perfect.

10 Forager September 7, 2009 at 11:04 am

Hey there Guest – Freddy sure is a precious little bundle and the lure of excellent food could even tempt me to babysit. Only if there is excellent food though.

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