Friday, 16 November 2012

Cafe D'Afrique

We started our day with a very quick shopping trip and ended up in the Mount Pleasant area in Vancouver where we were going to have a lunch-dinner (linner) date together. But unfortunately the place was closed for the long weekend so Michael and I put on our thinking caps on and began to brainstorm where else we can go.

There are a lot restaurants around the Mount Pleasant area that offers a wide range of affordable food. I came across a Mexican restaurant, but Michael found an African restaurant that was highly rated online. For African cuisine, I have always wanted to save myself for this meal to share with my best gal pal. Our awaited trip to Africa, we have talked about this since our elementary school days and I can just feel this trip inching up closer to us.

The restaurant

We went to Cafe D'Afrique, which specializes in Ethiopian and various other traditional African delights. Cafe D'Afrique is located at 363 East Broadway, when we arrived there was a strong aroma of deliciousness.  The restaurant is a decent size, but looks very simple and had a minor African touch in the decoration.

Mediterranean salad

I wasn't hungry at all but I still had the curiosity for their food.  Michael and I decided to share the Mediterranean Salad ($6) as an appetizer.  The salad was a classic, with cucumbers, tomatoes, olives, and feta cheese and lightly drizzled with olive oil and bits of oregano. I thought the salad  had a very light taste and lacked much of the strong garlic taste and strong taste of onions like the usual Mediterranean salads I've had.  The dressing from the olive oil was just too light, the natural flavours of the tomatoes and cucumbers was just not enough. Perhaps ordering a Mediterranean salad at an African restaurant wasn't too smart.

Injera for our food, it's kind of like sponge cake pita

For our entrees, I was excited to see our food when our kind waitress came to our table. Our food was served as traditional as can be.  Our waitress assumed it was our first time eating this type of cuisine, we were served with injera, which looks like crepe but with a much more spongey texture. We were told that it was made from barley and it tasted very different from a crepe. It was a lot thicker and had a sour taste to it.

Injera served with lentils and potato salad

Also on the side we were served with lentils and a potato salad that we mistook mistaken for beets. Our waitress showed us to how to eat our entrees with the injera. It was a very familiar way of eating Indian food where we wrap the naan bread. Our waitress told us that the lentils and potatoes on the side we can eat them separately or together with our dishes. But if we combine the two together we change the elements to the salads taste. I say advice from a very wise chef!

Spinach stew

Since I wasn't hungry I thought I could eat something from the vegetarian side. I chose the spinach stew ($9.95). Since the menu said stew, I thought it was going to be in a stew form with more of a liquid consistence, much like the Indian dish Palak Paneer. But when it was served it was pretty much just chopped up spinach served in a dry form. I thought it was a very light dish but it didn't have much taste to my dish, other than just boiled vegetables.

Beef stew

As for Michael he was going to get the Kitfo but one of the waiters was kind enough to warn Michael that the beef is rather raw, so Michael chose the beef stew instead. He thought the beef's flavour was done very well, kind of like a cross between curry and stew broth. It had the texture of curry but without as many spices. I borrowed a lot of his stew for my dish, it added a little pizzaz to my spinach.

Michael and I both had fun eating at Cafe D'Afrique, it's something that Michael and I don't get to experience often. I know that next time I return I will definitely try a meat dish. But hopefully my next African meal will be with my gal pal, I raise my injera to you my friend!

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Cafe D'Afrique Ethiopian & Eritrean Restaurant   on Urbanspoon

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