Cheers to one of the most flavor filled dinners I experienced right before the new year. Tawakal Halal Cafe is a little restaurant located in East Boston that just recently opened. Homey, cozy and literally every dish was exceptional. I fell in love with their Shaah ( Spiced Tea), the hot sauce, the food- literally everything. I cannot wait to go back and try more things on their menu. Go check out their FB page which is linked above- they just updated their menu!
Somalian food was a new cuisine for me, although there were some things I was familiar with like the Chapati ( an unleavened flatbread with origins in the Indian subcontinent but embraced in many different parts of the world including East Africa and the Caribbean) and the Sambusa ( which is kind of like a samosa) it was an exciting experience simply because of how the dishes were prepared. For instance, the chapati was used almost as like a noodle/rice in the dish I had which I couldn’t get enough of and the biryani rice was aromatic and wicked tasty. I have had many a biryani before but there was just something about this one I really enjoyed.
Also- ask for the coconut hot sauce. Does that sound weird? Its not, its the most delightful hot sauce I have had thus far. Somehow slightly sweet from the coconut but with a real fire as you continue to eat it. Mixing it in the meat dish I had made it that much more delicious. The typical hot sauce that they serve with their platters is also quite delicious, but ask for the coconut one if you want a bit more punch!
Everyone who helped us while we were there made us feel incredibly welcome. From starting with Shaah, to giving us bananas ( which is a tradition with Somalian food as you are supposed to eat a banana along with your food) we all just really enjoyed our experience there.
Everything I had there was a new experience for me- which was part of my new year goals! ( off to a good start) I hope you all can make the time to take a little trip to this delightfully, yummy restaurant- tell them the “Maven” sent you!
Shaah | Spiced Tea w / Milk
Beef “Hilib” Sambusa | Ground beef, green + red peppers, onions, herbs & aromatic spices | Served with hot sauce
Egg Nafakha | Mashed Potato Fritters, hardboiled egg served with Tawakal hot sauce
Beef “Hilib” Tawakal Plate | Chapati strips cooked in a spiced tomato sauce and herbs
Famous coconut hot sauce
Beef “Hilib” Kabab Sandwich
Goat “Hilib Ari” Biryani | Aromatic Basmati Rice,slow cooked goat cooked in herbs and Tawakal spices
Bananas served with the food!
Love how the walls are painted
Much of the art on the walls is for sale! 🙂
Cheesecake | Homemade with chocolate & caramel drizzle
This was a great meal and it couldn’t be run by nicer people. Its worth the trip to get delicious food. Step outside your comfort zone this year and go try something new, you deserve it!
Life as a Maven