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Happy Meal | San Diego | Mama’s Bakery & Lebanese Deli

January 19, 2010

Anabel Vidrio’s Facebook status reports are always stuffed with mouth-watering images and stories about her trips to ethnic restaurants. And that’s why she’s one of my inspirations when it comes to blogging so much about food.

So when she invited me to lunch , of course I had to bite.

For extra spice she invited along her super sassy sister Brenda.

The place she chose was Mama’s Bakery and Lebanese Deli in North Park.

How did she know that I’m a sucker for ethnic Ma and Pa?  My favorite restaurant in the world is Al Diwan in Paris. Mama’s is a kind of an Al Diwan West.

Both places feature very casual dining.

Al Diwan is located in the rather fancy George V neighborhood just of the Champs Elysees. Mama’s surroundings are less tony, but the food turned out to be tasty too.

While the menu features everything from stuffed grape leaves to fava and garbanzo bean soup, all three of us ordered wraps. They were all priced at around six bucks a pop.

Anabel went for the eggplant, Brenda, kafta.  I selected the garlic chicken.

Really Good Baked Goods

The flatbread used to make the wraps is baked on the premises. Aha! That’s the benefit of attaching a bakery to a deli. The bread is uniquely chewy, a healthy combination of half whole wheat and half white flour. I know from my own baking escapades that it’s difficult to go 100 percent whole wheat.

Before we could dig in, Anabel and I both had to take photos.  If you don’t take a photo of a great meal and put it on the Internet, does it really exist?

My wrap was very fresh. I must say my favorite ingredient was the Middle Eastern pickles and I don’t like regular pickles. It was only during this meal that I realized that I’ve had the pickles before at Al Diwan.

Amuse Bouche

The portions are very generous. You can easily share one of the wraps. Brenda was going to share a piece with me. Not wanting to be greedy, I told her to give me a bite of what she had leftover. Next time I’ll be greedy.

As I mentioned, this is very casual dining, nothing fancy but everything cheerful.

If you are new to Middle Eastern food, you are sure to have questions.  Expect to get them cheerfully answered. I’ve been eating it for years and I still have questions.

I’ve got a couple of questions now.

What next Anabel?

And what’s on your plate?

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. Anabel vidrio permalink
    January 19, 2010 10:40 pm

    What a great time spending time with u and Brenda. Laughing, sharing your great stories, discussing your book and your ma’s upcoming cookbook all over tasty Lebanese wraps. Can’t wait till next time.
    Next time Olvera street??

  2. kiki medina permalink
    January 21, 2010 3:34 am

    Great story. When r we chasing the koji truck again?? It’s time for some blackjack quesadillas and kimchee tacos

  3. lenanozizwe permalink*
    January 21, 2010 7:59 am

    Sounds good to me or should I say tastes good.

  4. January 22, 2010 8:57 pm

    You mean you were just three blocks away and you didn’t call? I’m heartbroken. This is my favorite neighborhood haunt. Good choice

    • lenanozizwe permalink*
      January 22, 2010 9:41 pm

      Next time. Glad you approve.

  5. Anabel vidrio permalink
    January 24, 2010 4:35 am

    Lena,
    I’m taking my cousin Helena and friend Torrie to mamas Sunday. Wish u were here!!!

    • lenanozizwe permalink*
      January 24, 2010 2:49 pm

      I wish I was there too. Send pix.

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