On my recent visit to the San Francisco area, I had to go back to Paradise Kabab House in Redwood City. It was here that I tried Persian kababs for the first time last summer and ever since, I’ve been in search of good koobideh.
We were given complimentary lavash, which is a soft, thin flatbread, to start. This Persian/Iranian version of lavash is quite different from the Turkish version that I tried at Anatolia’s Gate in Burnaby, BC. The Turkish version was a lot puffier and more chewy in texture. The Persian/Iranian lavash is much thinner and was almost like a single layer pita bread in terms of texture.
My friend decided to be adventurous and ordered the Lamb Stew – Qeymey ($12.99). The Lamb Stew consisted of chunks of boneless lamb cooked in tomatoes, onions, sun-dried lemons, split peas, saffron, and cinnamon. The stew was served with steamed saffron rice and a chunk of crispy golden rice crust known as tah-deeg (tahdig). I was surprised at how tasty the stew was. The flavours were complex and blended together in perfect harmony. The sauce from the stew was perfect for the crispy rice crust as it provided a contrast of flavours and textures and helped to soften the rice crust a bit.
I ordered the Koobide Double ($11.99), not because I didn’t want to try new things, but because the koobideh at Paradise is so tasty. I have yet to find koobideh as tasty and flavourful as the ones at Paradise. The Koobide Double consisted of two skewers of koobideh kababs which are made with a blend of house-prepared ground beef, onions, and spices. The kababs were served with steamed saffron rice and a piece of grilled tomato. The koobideh kababs did not disappoint on this visit. They were just as tasty as I remembered them be. They were tender, juicy, flavourful, and well-spiced. Aside from the kababs, the grilled tomato is also my favourite. I like that the tomato is juicy and grilled long enough to have that charred/broiled flavour. Unlike at Paradise, I find that many places do not grill their tomatoes long enough so the tomato still tastes raw and is not flavourful. On this occasion, the steamed saffron rice was still tasty but not as flavourful as I remembered it to be. I think this time it didn’t have as strong a buttery flavour.
We ordered Persian Ice Cream ($4.99) for dessert. The Persian Ice Cream is made in-house with saffron, rose-water, and pistachios. This was one of the best versions of Persian Ice Cream that I ever had. It was very creamy and I could taste the freshness of the pistachios and saffron. There was the perfect amount of rose-water flavour without being too floral.
Paradise Kabab House is a family owned and operated restaurant and it is evident in the level of service and quality of food they deliver. The owners are very sweet, helpful, friendly, caring, and accommodating. They come around to talk to every table to make sure that their patrons are happy with the food and that their needs are attended to. Dining at Paradise Kabab House feels like having dinner at your friend’s family’s home. If I lived in the SF Bay area, I’d be eating there at least once a week. I can’t wait to go back to Paradise Kabab House again on my next visit to the SF Bay area.
Paradise Kabab House
2653 Broadway Ave.
Redwood City, CA 94063