Exclusive Dish: Unaabi Grill’s Chicken Kabuli

Cary’s Unaabi Grill, which opened last February, bills itself as a purveyor of the “finest Afghan cuisine in North Carolina.” It also represents the first totally authentic restaurant of its genre in our area — if not the entire state.

Fittingly, the food at Unaabi is prepared by Afghan-born Chef Tahir Yasin. His credentials include running a well-known kebab establishment in New York City’s Times Square for more than 20 years.

“All the meats and vegetables we serve are the freshest we can find,” said Unaabi Proprietor Zahed Kahn, a former food distributor. “We also try to purchase organic ingredients whenever possible. Providing healthy food is very important to us, and the customers seem to appreciate that.”

Among the most popular specialty dishes served are Kabuli Palau (seasoned beef or lamb) and Chicken Kabuli (pictured), both of which feature brown basmati rice along with thinly stripped carrots, raisins and sliced almonds. Kabuli and other entrees are accompanied with fresh Afghan bread and house salad with a distinctive creamy dressing. Entrees also come with cilantro-based green chutney and pepper-infused red chutney.

The meat in the Kabuli dishes is cooked to order according to the customer’s specifications. “Most people request for their meat to be grilled to medium doneness,” Kahn said.

Kahn advised that all the food at Unaabi is made fresh from scratch, even the yogurt. Vegetarian and vegan choices are available as well. A reasonably priced buffet lunch is served Monday through Thursday and on Sundays.

Nicely brewed Qahwa green tea pairs well with the Kabuli dishes and other food options. “Much like the cuisine, our tea is also extremely healthy,” Kahn shared. “It contains cloves, lemon, ginger, cardamom and other spices.”

Unaabi Grill
914 Kildaire Farm Road, Cary
(919) 439-0402

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