To my surprise, Nairobi is host to a sizable Indian/Pakistani diaspora. It’s a bit ironic that for an area that grappled with the history of slavery in the 17th and 18th century, at the same time had lots of Indian/Pakistani guest workers imported to build the Kenya-Uganda railroad. Many of the construction workers remained in the country afterwards and Hindi and Urdu can be heard a lot in the Westlands and Parklands areas of Nairobi.
Indian food is one of my favorite cuisines, since I spent time in Northern India. Often the best (and most easy to digest) food can be tandoori. Tandoori is basically barbecued meats but from a tandoor oven that is more closed up and allows the meat to be cooked at a higher temperature and with higher humidity. The result is a better and more tender taste.
Hashmi Barbeque is located in the shopping mall right across from the former Westgate Mall. This mall is supposed to be Nairobi’s oldest.
I went to Hashmi’s three times during my time in Nairobi and there was always a wait despite the huge dining hall.
I tried the chicken tikka (barbecued whole chicken breast), the lamb chops and the kebabs. Out of those I liked the chicken the most. It was moist, tender and extraordinarily delicious. It is served with fries or masala fries.
The total price tag for the chicken tikka plate with fries is about $9 when dining in. That’s a steal since Nairobi restaurants aren’t cheap (unless you go ‘super local’).
If you like meat and would like to discover the Pakistani/Indian way of cooking it, then don’t miss this place when in Nairobi!