California mezze 2/23/22

The secret is out, but nonetheless, we want to introduce you to a small, family-run Glendale gem. Mini Kabob, was one of three LA restaurants included in the New York Times Restaurant List of 2021, among “The 50 places in America we’re most excited about right now.” Armen Martirosyan and his parents cook stellar versions of Armenian standards and are making us a batch of fresh, raw falafel mix, packed in pint containers, ready for you to scoop and fry or freeze. We're also getting some of their ikar, a smoky eggplant spread, to wrap up in lavash with your lula kabobs.

We’re marinating organic chicken and a mixture of lamb and grass-fed beef in middle eastern spices and grated onions, so you can make lula kabobs (or several other things we’ll provide instructions for.) We’re also slow cooking some chickpeas ala Canele, with onions, garlic, and warm spices. These are delicious as is, or can easily be turned into a substantial stew with some farm box vegetables, or combined with crumbled and crisped lula meats.

To sauce your lula, falafel, ora king salmon, or roast free-range whole chicken there’s zhoug, a middle eastern fresh, green chili and herb (including cilantro) condiment that is often served with falafel but is delicious on almost anything. And Jason Kim from Forage is making tahini dressing which is great on the chicken, falafel,  lettuces, roasted cauliflower, green cabbage, carrots, Japanese sweet potatoes, or winter squash. Valbreso sheep’s milk French feta can be crumbled on top or whipped with some plain yogurt and smeared on a plate beneath any of this week’s offerings.

Aris Natural Food in Inglewood, makes kefir-style strained yogurt which is particularly dense and creamy. Their marinated kefir cheese is strained, rolled into balls, packed in olive oil and comes in three options: sundried tomato, jalapeño or kalamata olive. It’s delicious spread on Bub and Grandma’s sesame loaf. Their plain yogurt can be turned into a sauce like tzatziki or sweetened to your liking. A mere spoonful of their lemon yogurt can finish a meal on a sweet note. 

And for something even sweeter, we’ve got walnut baklava from Baklava Factory, a local baklava shop. 

Spinach fatayer, little Lebanese savory hand pies with a subtly sweet dough and slightly tart spinach filling, are a staple snack at our Farm to Curb meetings. Sam picks them up from Le Gout on her daily school runs, and we find them so satisfying. We asked the bakery to make us a frozen batch of these spinach pies so that you can bake them off at home to feed your meetings, musings, or masses.

To wash it all down, we’ve got more of the Dom de Fontsainte’s rosé from our friends at Small Town. Because, it’s light, crisp, and goes well with everything.