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Nov 15, 2013 01:58 PM

bhindi (okra) at Darbar Restaurant on Polk St.

Darbar is one of my favorite SF Indian restaurants. Consistently high quality and good value (especially with the groupon deals). Last night, we ordered the sauted bhindi (okra). What a treat. Slightly charred with onions, taste was bright and delicious. At most Indian restaurants, bhindi is not regularly offered. Hope you get to enjoy it.

1412 Polk St, San Francisco, CA 94109

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  1. Darbar is one my favorites too... But probably more because it's around the corner from my house... ^^

    Too bad they don't offer the same menu as when it first opened... I miss that nice and spicy chapli kebab...

    Wonder if there was a chef change, thus the menu adjustment...

    3 Replies
    1. re: slew

      Sorry to hear that the chapli kebab is gone, my favorite thing there.

      Since you're in the nabe, maybe you can answer this query,

      1. re: slew

        Say it ain't so ! Wow that was the sole reason for me to schlep over to Darbar when in the mood for spicy Chapli after a few pints.

        Did you happen to ask if they would make it on request?

        The only other place I have found a solid rendition is De Afghanan Kebab - they used to have a branch right on Polk - now closed. The one in Fremont was going strong, last time I was there.

        1. re: osho

          De Afghanan is also in West Berkeley on University Avenue.

      2. Glad you enjoyed Darbar, but I must say did you find okra at a buffet or on the menu? Most Indian restaurants have it on the menu (Amber, Naan-N Curry, Lahore Karahi, Udupi Palace - just to name a few). Though it's true a lot of them don't offer it on their buffet.

        1 Reply
        1. re: goldangl95

          On the menu. Glad that it is more common than I thought.

        2. Was the okra fresh and not frozen? Okra season is summer into fall, so that's one reason it's not available all the time. This would be the time to find fresh okra.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Melanie Wong

            I am a real okra lover, and here in Japan it is still available in November. It usually comes from the far south in Kagoshima or Okinawa, but recently quite a bit is imported from the Philippines and even Thailand. It is possible that Darbar can still get it fresh if it is imported from Mexico or Central America. Okra needs heat and humidity to thrive.

            1. re: Melanie Wong

              It tasted fresh. As it's a sauted dish, I think it would be difficult to use frozen okra. the moisture from the residual ice combined with the nature of okra would make the dish slimey, rather than dry.

              1. re: elise h

                No, actually frozen okra comes out drier.