Location: 2010 Lawrence Ave E, Scarborough, ON M1R 2Z1
Type: Somali Cuisine
I have never tried Somali cuisine before but this was an awesome first-time experience. Not only was the food on point but the owner and staff were super friendly and nice. We went here for Iftar (to break fast in Ramadan) and ate till our stomachs could fill no more.
During the month of Ramadan, various Halal restaurants offer free appetizers and drinks (such as rose water, dates and samosa). Mosques on the other hand give out free meals that are eaten at the mosque. Ramadan is the prime time of sharing and caring for each other and where the well-off should donate and feed the poor. It is a time where Muslims are closer to God by reading the Quran and attending daily and nightly prayers at the mosque. It is a time to spend with love ones, family and friends. A time that sets an example of how we should behave throughout the rest of the year.
To start off and open our fast, we were giving free dates, lentil soup and mango juice per person. The lentil soup was really good and reminded me of when my mom makes Daal Chawal (South Asian lentil and rice). Since, the soup was mild, we had this green sauce on the side. It was spicy with green chillies and a vinegary taste and most importantly very good. When the owner came by, he had seen that we finished the jug of mango juice and gave us free refills.
For our main course, we combined our dished together and got two huge plates which we could all share from. Similar to a mandi (Yemeni dish). In this huge platter, we got goat ribs, beef and chicken pieces with rice, chapati (bread) and salad. Which was all infused with Somali spices similar to South Asian spices.
After we finished our super delicious meal, we decided to take a break and pray. There was a prayer room downstairs as well upon discovery a huge party room. This party room could fit up to 15 or more people and was fully private. So if you have a huge crew, book that in advance and enjoy!
Just as we were about to leave and pay for our bill, the owner came to us and introduced his specialty Somali milk cake :o. Even the name itself sounds mouth-watering, especially since I am a huge sweet-tooth. We got the cake for free and when we all took a bite, we were all blown away. This was perhaps the best dessert I have ever had. On par with Efes Kebab House‘s baklava, rice pudding and kunefe. So don’t forget to order that towards the end of your meal!!
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