Aksaray Turkish Kebab House
74 Glengala Rd, Sunshine. Phone: 9310 1377
Stephz Gourmet Deli
64 Glengala Rd, Sunshine. Phone: 9364 7488
Having scoped this west Sunshine place out, unhungry, a few nights previously, I hold no great expectations on entering Aksaray for lunch – maybe a nice Turkish kebab plate: meat, salad, rice, dip, bread.
That changes as soon as I walk through the door and am immediately served a sample of a freshly made soup – as is every customer who follows me - free of charge.
It’s a fantastic vegetable concoction – just carrot, onion, celery and seasonings of pepper, salt, oregano. It’s blended just right – well short of being a creamy soup, leaving some grainy texture that gives it substance. Marvellous!
Turns out this is the start of a major overhaul of the offerings available at Aksaray – an overhaul I suspect will make it far more interesting than just another kebab/dips joint.
In a few weeks time they’ll be unveiling a revolving lineup of soups, casseroles, stews and more home-style Turkish food – and I reckon that’s exciting.
For all that we love the normal restaurant fare of our various Mediterranean eateries, we all know it’s just one aspect of the various cuisines involved – eatery food and home food is different.
Bring it on – I’ll be there with my bib on!
My adana kebab lunch platter doesn’t reach the same heights as the soup, but does the job.
Chewy lamb adana is overshadowed by the strips of doner kebab provided usasked for; nice rice, tabouli that is of my preferred wetness, OK bread, slightly fried.
The star is the cacik – a creamy yogurt dip zingy with garlic and chunky with cucumber.
As I’m enjoying my lunch a steady parade of regulars comes and goes, many leaving with kebab sandwiches to go, many with lovely looking boreks of chicken or lamb, all having sampled the super soup.
The chicken borek ($3) I take home for the night’s dinner is brilliant, the shredded chook stuffing subtlety flavoured with parsley and pepper and the mouthfuls of pleasure enlivened by finely diced onion, cooked but still a little on the crunchy side..
From there I amble up the road apiece to Stephz Gourmet Deli.
This is classic western suburbs.
Sited in what once was a servo, it’s a mix of continental grocery, Greek bakery and coffee bar – all with a Maltese waitress!
I have a crash-hot $3 latte and a 50c piece of what looks like biscotti, but which is emphatically non-Italian. It’s plain, almost savoury, topped with sesame seeds, is called – as near as Athena, another waitress, can translate – pazematia. Subsequent research reveals that a more precise term may be paximathakia – in any case it goes great with my coffee.
Being too full from lunch to countenance richer sweet goodies, I nevertheless ogle the cake/cookie displays. All the goodies are baked on the premises, with a range of rum balls looking particularly evil and desirable. I settle for a slice of very fine baklava to take home with me.