I love travelling far and wide for a meal-it's part of the whole adventure of food. However there are times when you just want a minimum of fuss. These times usually come about when one is pressed for time or when your friend has a new baby and of course can't travel very far!
Christie and I were meeting up for lunch one day and as a Marrickville local she has partaken of a bountiful breakfast here at Celini's. There are Turkish rugs on the tables and lots of warm wood and velvets in some settings while others are more regular cafe looking tables and chairs in others. Service is really wonderful and genuinely welcoming from the staff. And if it looks like we ordered a lot, it's because we did-we did so with the intention of taking it home so we wouldn't have to cook in the heat! ;)
I start with an Ayran which is a slightly salty yogurt drink which is more watery than a lassi. The first time I tried it years ago I wasn't smitten but once you expect the slight saltiness it's very good.
Celini's meze for two $20
The meze for two features two dips which we were able to select and we Christie chose the carrot and I chose the hommous. True to our selection we preferred the dips that we chose-the carrot has slight tangyness to it whilst the hommous is creamy and smokey and thick. It comes with warm, slender batons of soft Turkish bread, stuffed vine leaves, some gorgeous cheese filled lady finger deep fried pastries, creamy herb topped feta and halved fried button mushrooms flavoured with oregano.
Iskender kebab $19
Christie and I both adore Iskender kebab. Here it is made with succulent lamb rather than doner kebab meat which it sometimes is made with. The lamb, yogurt sauce and tomato salsa sits onto cubes of toasted Turkish bread so that the flavour seeps through the bread. I particularly like the soft meat and the tangy yogurt sauce and tomato salsa.
Manti are Turkish beef filled dumplings like small tortellini cooked al dente and drenched in a yogurt and tereyag which is unsalted butter cooked with oregano. They're addictive little things and the creamy yogurt gives it a nice alternative creaminess.
Mixed grill plate $25
The mixed grill has three types of meat on a charcoal skewer with a beef, chicken and a lamb kofte with sumac onions, mixed salad and red rice. The pick is the chicken which is made up of large pieces of thigh meat and is smokey and succulent. I didn't particularly go for the beef or the lamb kofte as much though as they weren't quite as tender.
So we did intend to take away a lot more but as it happens we were both hungry. We did take a box of food away for each of us and they were happy to do it. Sadly we didn't quite have the stomach space to try another one of their specialities: the baklava which is one of those things that I could eat a tray of.
So tell me Dear Reader, do you sometimes over order? And do you do it with the intention of taking some away or do you do it because you like to try different things?
Hello Poppy! And check out Christie's new mummy blog, Poppy Seed Baby! Named after you guessed it, this little miss!
220 Marrickville Road, Marrickville, NSW
Tel: +61 (02) 9569 4848