There are some choice destinations that serve haleem all year round

Ramzans far away but want Hyderabadi haleem These are the places to goImage By arrangement
news Haleem Friday, March 11, 2016 - 15:10

If biriyani is the staple food of a die-hard Hyderabadi, haleem is its richer, more exotic cousin who visits once a year. If you’re familiar with Hyderabadi haleem, then you probably already have a checklist of destinations ready for the month of Ramzan.

Should we hazard a guess, we’d probably include Shah Ghouse, Pista House, Shadab, Paradise, Café Bahar, Sarvi, HyLine Café and Garden Restaurant, Secunderabad.

Facebook/Greenpark

For those not in the know, haleem is a Hyderabadi specialty so good that hardcore foodies make the pilgrimage to Hyderabad just to savour its rich flavours.

The origin of haleem lies in the popular Arabian dish known as harisah (also known as harees or hareesa), introduced by Arab traders and conquerors of South Asia and modified by the people of the subcontinent for their own palates.

The dish essentially consists of lamb mixed with wheat, lentils or cereals, sometimes sweetened with jaggery, and cooked continuously for eight hours. The result is a rich paste that, if the mix of spices and herbs are just right, tastes like warm mouthfuls of heaven.

Initially Hyderabadi Haleem was meant exclusively for the royal families of Hyderabad, but with the passage of time, it has gained universal appeal and today is likely to find its way into most of the meat-eating households of Hyderabad.

However, like we said before, Haleem usually tends to be a Ramzan specialty. So what do you do if you’re craving haleem and the holy month is a long way off?

Sankalp Vishnu Rao, a foodie and a food writer from Hyderabad seems to lean toward the “wait until Ramzan” school of thought.

“Having Haleem in the off-season is like having Maaza instead of mangoes. I believe in having it only when it's appropriate. During the season Haleem is made with dedication, sincerity, commitment and purity which makes worth cherishing.”

Mutton Haleem The Minar—Jewel of Nizam

Push him on the question, though, and he concedes, “When I crave Haleem in the off-season I prefer visiting The Minar—Jewel of Nizam or Green Park Hotel, as at least they make it hygienically with the right ingredients and set procedures.”

Facebook/Greenpark/Haleem - the quintessential Hyderabadi dish available at green park 365 days

Foodie and blogger, Ashish Nayak, has no qualms about eating haleem in the off-season, but observes that “Haleem has now become a predominantly Ramzan-only dish due to the high costs and time consuming process involved in making the dish.”

Haleem at Lemon Tree

However, he says, “You do still get them in some parts of the city on the off-season. Lajawab Chicken Center in Barkaas is my favourite because the chef tops off the haleem with a delicious sherwa’’. He also admits that he sometimes likes to have the “haleem at the Chai Shop at Taj Banjara, while sipping on coffee’’.

Chai Shop at Taj Banjara

If that doesn’t sound like a long enough list, here’s some other recommendations for haleem that hits that off-season spot: Taj Banjara, Lemon tree hotel, Golconda resorts and Hotels, Lajawab Haleem and Madina Haleem in Barkas. There are also a few stalls in Ram Koti that serve haleem throughout the year.

Kebab Theater at Lemon Tree

''The specialty of our Haleem is that it is very wholesome yet light so you don’t feel stuffed'' said Kumar Sambhav, Regional Executive Chef at Lemon Tree.

Haleem stall at Ram Koti

Madina Haleem at Barkas

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