I went with a South Asian friend to this wonderful new Pakistani restaurant in one of my favourite eating streets in TO: Lawrence Ave. East. On a great street in one of the best parts of the city for South Asian cooking, Mr. Chillie's is a MUST visit. I was amazed from beginning of a great (and inexpensive) meal to the end.
We began with parathas stuffed with a lightly spiced potato mixture nand served with a lovely, fresh mint yogurt. This is normally a breakfast item. It was piping hot, just cooked by the 'mom and pop' team. The meal moved at a nice leisurely pace, with everything coming out freshly cooked.
We moved on to a terrific lamb quorma, very different (and vastly) superior to other versions in the city. As with all the dishes, this one highlighted perfectly cooked meat and freshly toasted and ground spices. Haleem was a silky meat and cracked wheat porridge of sorts. Simmered for hours to a soft consistentcy, it is finished with slivers of chiles and ginger and fried onions. Heaven on a rainy evening and not too spicy. All this was eaten with some of the best nan I've eaten: hot and brushed lightly with ghee. Just the perfect touch of sour, crunchy crusty bubbles combined with the a spongy texture.
The real treats of the night were two dishes you'll only find here: one is khageena, the second is nargisi kofta. THe first is always on the menu. It is a soft, smooth kebab minced up and pan fried. Beautiful. The star of the evening was special ordered (but we're told is going to be a weekend special). The nargisi kofta is a round meat ball cut in half to reveal a hard-boiled egg. It was served with a fragrant sauce redolent of the most delicate spices. Our vegetables needs were well served with delicious chickpeas and a curry of mixed veg.
It's a small mom and pop place, as I say. Just a few tables...frankly they should be full.
Delighted to recommend and hope people give it a try: The address is 3256 Lawrence Ave. East and the tele is 416-289-4104.
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