Manakish is a popular Middle eastern preparation that is a dough with toppings which is very similar to a pizza. This soft pita bread is rolled out flat and and then pressed out with fingers to create little dips to hold the toppings. These are then baked to a puffy crunchy goodness in an oven.
This was a hidden gem in Dubai and I am very grateful to my local Dubai friends for taking me to this place. I had been craving to see some street food joints in Dubai and thus our journey took us here. So this place is a little off Dubai and onto Sharjah Road and you will know this as soon as you hit the bottle neck traffic when you enter the lanes here 😛
The place is huge with seating inside that is air-conditioned, a section covered with thick plastic film and air conditioned as well and a seating outside. Even though it was the beginning of May, the weather was pleasant enough to sit outside with a windy weather.The best part about walking in was to be welcomed by the smell of baked goods in the air.
Their menu consists of a variety of Mannish, Moaganat, Fatayer Mushaltat, sweet pies and more. The have a lot of bakery items up for sale inside. I was only able to try out the Mannish in this visit and shall surely be going back for more. The best part about eating here was the fact that I got a window seat in front of the kitchen. As the chef prepared these delicious goodies, I marvelled at his expertise as he dropped in one mannish into the over after another. These guys are open practically thought the 24 hours of a day and shut only for a couple of hours to clean up..and it is always bustling with hungry customers at all hours…now doesn’t that say something about their food!!
Get Set Gobble:
~ Zaatar – The topping was of a middle eastern spice called zaatar that is popularly used in their cuisine. The manakish was topped generously with it and upon eating I thought the spice tasted very similar to ajwain. Zaatar spice mix is essentially a slightly sour spice which is a mixture of sumac berries (dried and powdered), thyme, oregano, sesame seeds and some salt. The zaatar is mixed with olive oil and then spread onto the dough before baking.
~ Labneh – This is probably the best thing I have tasted here. It is a thick type curd preparation from which the whey has been removed. It was topped with lots of fresh chopped veggies.
~ Chicken and cheese – This baked goodness had a cheese topping with shredded chicken that was absolutely divine. I absolutely loved this one with its salty hint.
~ Cheese – This cheese version was also very good and my vegetarian friends loved it. Though nothing beats adding some chicken on top of it 😛
~ Honey and Cheese – After all the savoury eats, we wanted to go for something sweet. This is the most unique combination of flavours I have eaten. The savoury cheese and the sweet honey balance each other out in every bite. This was not the same circular dough preparation and was folded to have crispy flaky layers.
Freshly prepared food. Quick service. Good portions.