August 24, 2008

Yummy Moroccan

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I went to the driving range tonight to try to regain some of my muscle memory for golf. After the short session, my cousin Maria and I decided to head over to Elements Mall next door and try out Malouf's - the newest outpost for Melbourne's Greg Malouf.

Malouf's first venture in Hong Kong - Soho's Olive - is high on my list for Middle Eastern cuisine, so I was eager to try out this place.  The place had nice, modern decor - with a comfy bar downstairs and the dining room upstairs. The music was a mix of lounge (can we say Hotel Costes?) and Mid East themed dance tunes. Very cool.

We started with the mezze platter - a mix of 5 starters. The merguez roll was tasty, and instead of the usual sausage, the meat was formed into a thin sheet and rolled with another sheet of dough, so it kinda looked like a Swiss roll. The crab meat and couscous cigar was also interesting, rolled inside a sheet of filo pastry. The falafel came in the form of round, flat discs like poker chips, and tasted nice with the yogurt dip. There was also a tomato and almond dip, and a mixed veggie chutney.

For main course I chose the bisteeya - the traditional Moroccan pigeon pie. This was really wonderful. The baked, flaky filo pastry contained shredded pigeon, almond flakes, along with finely chopped mint leaves and egg. The spices were wonderful, and the pigeon meat was very tender. The occasional bits of fatty skin added something extra to the experience. I didn't really care for the cabbage salad underneath - the dressing was a bit too acidic for me.

For dessert we shared the mulhalbia, the custard cream with strawberries and orange blossom water. On top of it all were thin strands of sugar just like the sai mai (龍鬚糖) I had in Ayutthaya. These were flavored with orange blossom water, and we had fun playing with them... I finished off with some Moroccan mint tea, and promised to return soon for another round of yummy food.

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