Did You Know These Chapli Kebabs Entail A Pashtuni Legacy?
Image Credit: Here is a Pashtuni kebab that gives a tough fight to all the Lucknowi counterparts.

The first visual that strikes me when I think of the City of Nawabs is a long queue of kebabs lined up outside small shops, their aroma filling the streets. After all, Lucknow has give us some of the most amazing kebabs of the day. From galouti to tunday, each kebab is not only replete with flavour but has a story to tell too. For instance, the tunday kebab got their name from a one-armed chef who created this lip-smacking treat. Mughals loved having kebabs for their meals and the khansamas (royal chefs) were in a constant quest to ideate something unique that would please their emperor. 

However, if we go back in time, history tells us that the Turkish and Persian soldiers were also quite fond of the kebabs, although it was at the most primitive stage then when the swords were used to coat the minced meat and then grill over bonfire. One such kebabs that were given shape were Chapli kebabs. Now, if your mind is wandering in the streets of Lucknow, we’ll tell you take a little detour and head towards Peshawar. Yes, you heard us. These interestingly named kebabs were born in the Pakistani city of Peshawar. While they were also called Peshawari kebabs for a long time, today, chapli kebabs has stuck to them. 

A popular dish from the Pashtuni cuisine, the word chapli is derived from the Pashto word Chaprikh meaning flat. The flattened minced meat appearance of the kebabs gave way to this name. Though the kebabs were originally made from beef, several chicken and mutton variations have come up these days. 

Now the lingering question is that what makes the Chapli kebabs different from their Awadhi counterparts? The chewy texture of these flat kebabs, as opposed to the melt-in-your-mouth flavours of galouti or tunday kebabs is what differentiates the two families of kebabs. The use of pomegranate and coriander seeds in these meat patties lend them a distinct taste. 

Now, if you ask us, we’ll tell you that these kebabs are best eaten with a side of roomali roti, mint chutney and some onion rings. Don’t believe us? Try it yourself then.