I am woefully tired nowadays. I envy those that only need 5-6 hours sleep. My tiredness is a result of a combination of drinking a Red Bull several days ago and subsequently not being able to sleep for 3 days as well as having little sleep due to the roadworks outside. As I live on a main road they start the roadworks at 11pm and finish them at 3am. Yes sometimes this feels like the outer ring in the Seventh Circle of Hell. So much so that when we saw them park the huge contraption that creates the noise on our street, I seriously considered taking a picture of it and selling it on ebay. My auction would read like this:
Road ripper up for sale. Pick up before 10pm at night. No key for this so you will need hot wiring skills. In very good and hellishly loud working order. 99c buy it now.
So what was my point? I'm tired and rambling now. Oh yes my point was that because of this we are meeting my friend M and her sons S and In at a rather early time of 5.30pm so that I can get back in bed by a normal hour. So at 5.30pm we are seated at the Taste of Egypt on Greenfield parade in Bankstown, staring at their huge chalkboard menu of Egyptian goodies. I spy some intriguing sounding dishes and we immediately order them with our friendly waitress who we guess is the owner of the business. She tells us a little about the dishes. Tonight unfortunately they are out of Koushery the rice dish with fried pasta and lentils and topped with onion rings. A 1000 year old dish that is usually served after breakfast or for lunch. She reads back our order and tells us that what we have is a lot but a good range of Egyptian food.
Mango nectar (left) and Guava Nectar (right) $2 each
We help ourselves to drinks from the fridge and try the Mango, Fruit Cocktail and Guava nectars, all deliciously sweet with the mango being particularly thick and almost gelatinous in the bottom of the bottle.
Fruit Cocktail Nectar $2
There is a strong takeaway trade with people buying takeaway chicken, kebabs and dips but when we smell the scent of our meals being cooked we get ravenous. Our meals come out and the boys are itching to eat but are patient while the obligatory photos are being taken.
Mozah (lamb Shank with rice) $13
This is absolutely gorgeous, the Lamb shank falling of the bone after a gentle nudge while the sauce, a strong and flavoursome mix of tomato, chili and garlic is the perfect accompaniment.
Kawahra with Fatta (Cow shank soup) served with rice $15
The cow shank soup is interesting, a semi medicinal (as in similar to Ginseng) tasting clear soup with two large shank inside the bowl.
The shanks are a little too fatty to eat but the rice is steamed on top of bread which ends up tasting like thin crepes or pancakes. My husband particularly likes the soup.
The Egyptian Lasagne is quite good, with pieces of Penne instead of lasagne sheets and filled with ground beef and Bechamel sauce with melted cheese on top. There's no tomato sauce in the lasagne and a little kick of chili in the beef which I like.
Egyptian Tomato Salad $5 large
The Egyptian Tomato Salad was something that I had seen Nigella give a recipe for but never made it myself so I was interested in trying it. It's a clean, refreshing salad with tomato, cucumber and plenty of fresh parsley.
Okra and rice $6
The Okra and rice was one that we had asked for as S prefers vegetarian food. It's tasty with a range of vegetables (peas, potato and okra) with a rich sauce reminiscent of a flavour we'd had before perhaps even in Asian cuisine but we can't put our finger on.
Egyptian prawns $10
The Egyptian prawns on rice come with the same deliciously robust tomato, chili and garlic tapenade and are juicy and delicious.
Felafel 8 pieces for $6
The felafel are shaped in the shape of triangles and spades and are the polar opposite of the Felafel at Al Aseel which were crunchy on the outside. These are so soft but delicious and I wonder how they managed to cook them without them falling apart.
Somehow, beyond all expectations, we've managed to hoover our way through all of the plates. Even the owner is impressed. We had a little help though, that is, the food being delicious never hurts ;)
A Taste of Egypt
18 Greenfield Parade Bankstown Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9708 0869
Open 7 days 11am til late