Egyptian Food

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Egyptian Food

Egyptian Food

Location: SW 9th and Alder
Hours: daily, 11-4

The Story:

When you sit down to name your business, you want the name to mean something and tell the consumer what you do. Egyptian Food is the name of the cart and that is what they do.

Falafel from Egyptian Food

Falafel from Egyptian Food

Mohammed, the owner and chef took one of the oldest carts on the block and converted it to his own style of kitchen so he could create and serve fresh Egyptian cuisine. Speaking with him, he stressed that his food is made to order and that the best tastes come from freshly made items. An example is the fava bean falafel he dropped in the fryer. He stood there, watched them, poked them and waited until the precise moment to pull them out. When I saw the golden brown nugget, I almost asked to skip the sandwich and just give me the falafel. The sandwich, falafel on a bed of lettuce, with tomatoes, tzatziki, some hummus and cucumbers was wrapped in a lightly grilled pita. Some of the best falafel I have had in town. I even offered some up to another food cart owner who simply stood there and chewed, amazed at how fresh and delicious it was. I’m excited to try other items on the menu now.

Egyptian Food is now open and you can’t miss them right on the corner of SW 9th and Alder. The cart they are in has some rich history going back 20 years having hosted an Indian purveyor, Italian espresso and most recently, gourmet pork sandwiches. Stop on by for some Egyptian food and let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Fish, chicken, lamb, falafel over rice platter: $7
  • Kafta over rice platter: $8
  • Lamb, chicken gyro: $5
  • Falafel sandwich: $5
  • Kafta sandwich: $6

Hours: daily, lunchtime

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Ramy’s Lamb Shack

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Ramy's Lamb Shack

Ramy’s Lamb Shack

Cart Closed – find them mobile

Location: NE 52nd and Sandy, Roce City Food Park
Hours: Mon-Sun, 11am-7pm

The Story:

Ramy of the Lamb Shack is a character. When I met him, he corrected the pronunciation of how I pronounced his name – “say it like raw meat.” All I could do is chuckle. This is the kind of cart owner I enjoy chatting with.

Ramy’s Lamb Shack focuses on Mediterranean gyro and kabob dishes. Having grown up in Egypt with Egyptian and Italian parents, Ramy has a lot going for him in the kitchen. After working as a butcher, he wanted to try something new and the cart came to be. I chatted with him about the ingredients he uses and loved that he included fresh cucumbers from his personal garden in my gyro. How cool is that?

Falafel from Ramy's Lamb Shack

Falafel from Ramy’s Lamb Shack

The menu offers up lamb, chicken, kafta and falafel gyros along with kabob plates. In my quest to expand my falafel palate, I decided to check them out. Made with fava beans, some parsley and onion, these falafel were some of the best I’ve found. I was surprised by the green, but when I learned it was from fava beans, it made sense. The wrap is grilled before everything is added to create a crunchy warm vessel for the falafel, cucumber, tomato, tzatziki, tahini and fresh cut onion. So many amazing flavors and so fresh. I’ll be back.

Cartlandia continues to add great new carts like Ramy’s and now has a beer garden. Check it out, enjoy some of Ramy’s lamb or falafel and let him know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

[Ramy moved his cart to the Hillsdale Food Park in November of 2012]

Ramy move his cart to Rose City in November 2013

Sample Menu (see website for current menu and pricing):

  • Lamb Gyro
  • Chicken Gyro
  • Kafta Gyro
  • Falafel
  • Baklava
  • Lamb Kabob plate

Hours: Mon-Sun, 11am-7pm
Phone: 503.381.7783
Facebook: Ramy’s Lamb Shack

Istanbul Delight

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turkish food cart portland

Istanbul Delight

Location: SE 50th and Division, A la Carts Food Pavilion
Hours: Weekdays and weekends, lunch and dinner

The Story:

The food pod at North Station has gone through some big changes over the last year with some carts leaving and being replaced by new ones. One of these new carts, Istanbul Delight, is an excellent addition that may surprise you.

I have been able to enjoy all the flavors of the Middle East as a result of the cart scene here in Portland. I have heard arguments that the food throughout the region is all the same – falafel and gyros and hummus. I disagree with that generalization and argue that each country and culture has their own distinct flavors and spices and methods for creating meals. At Istanbul Delight, Kamo, the owner, presents dishes from Turkey, inviting you to enjoy his creations.

turkish food cart portland

Vegetarian Plate at Istanbul Delight

We were in the mood for a light snack so we wouldn’t arrive at a BBQ later in the day stuffed and at Istanbul Delight, we were able to get small plates with big flavor. The Gül Börek, a phyllo dough roll with spinach, feta and onion baked inside is made fresh every morning. Kamo stated that you wouldn’t normally find this item later in the day because they make them in batches in the early morning and sell out quickly. The circular roll is deceiving. It looks big and heavy, but is light and airy and when you bite in. The buttery phyllo melts in your mouth with the wonderful mixture of the spinach, feta and onion. So good, it is hard not to stuff it all in your mouth. You slow down and enjoy every bite. The gül börek is served with a crisp Mediterranean salad of chopped cucumbers and tomatoes and spiced with a bit of mint and topped with a sprinkle of sumac. Cool and tangy and perfect for a light snack.

Istanbul Delight is now open at North Station in the Arbor Lodge neighborhood of north Portland. Look for the bright blue cart. Kamo’s menu goes beyond the gül börek and offers daily specials along with Turkish Coffee. Let him know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

[Moved to SE Portland in 2013]

Sample Menu:

  • Beef/Lamb Gyro Wrap: served wrapped in pita with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion and tzatziki sauce – $6
  • Falafel Wrap: chickpea patties wrapped in pita with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion and  tzatziki or tahini sauce – $5
  • Gül Börek: spinach, feta and onion rolled and baked in phyllo dough. Served with Mediterranean salad – $4
  • Vegetarian Plate: 1 gül börek, 2 falafel patties and Mediterranean salad – $6.50
  • Cheese Borek: deep fried pastry filled with feta cheese and parsley – 4 for $4
  • Turkish Coffee: $2

Hours: Weekdays and weekends, lunch and dinner
Phone: 503 894 4605
Website: IstanbulDelightPDX.blogspot.com
Twitter: @IstanbulPDX          Facebook: Istanbul Delight

El Sultan

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El Sultan

El Sultan

Location: SE 52nd and Foster Blvd
Hours: Open 7 days a week for lunch and more

The Story:

Ever had Baklava from what you think is a Mexican food cart? Well, I have and it was wonderful. El Sultan offers up both Mediterranean and traditional Mexican food and is even open every day.

We were visiting the carts at the new food cart pod at SE 52nd and Foster and I thought I would do my traditional taco test with El Sultan, but when I walked up and checked out the menu, I became flustered since it wasn’t just Mexican food, but Mediterranean also. There were Gyros next to Tortas and falafel alongside carne aside. So many great choices I wondered if I could mix and match. Think about it. A Gyros with tzaziki and chorizo…. The possibilities are endless.

Tacos from El Sultan

Tacos from El Sultan

Since we had already ordered some items from other carts, we chose to get the baklava just to check it out. We weren’t disappointed with the flaky phyllo and nutty flavor. Yet, as a good food cart steward, I couldn’t leave without trying their tacos, so I ordered up a couple – 1 pollo (chicken) and 1 higado (calve’s liver.)  Yep, calve’s liver. Both tacos were served on fresh corn tortillas with a good pinch of chopped white onions, cilantro and a wedge of lemon. Normally I am use to having lime with my tacos, but the lemon worked great, adding that tang of citrus to each bite. Both tacos were great, but the higado was something different all together with that texture of the liver. Reminded me of when I was a kid and my parents sold us on liver and onions. Liver as a child is icky, liver as an adult has an acquired tasted. Wash it down with a cold Jaritos and you have lunch.

El Sultan is now open at the new lot at SE 52nd and Foster and can feed you with either Mediterranean or Mexican delicacies. Give them a try and let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

Mediterranean:

  • Hummus – blend of garbanzo beans, tahini, lemon juice and fresh garlic – $5
  • Tabouli Salad – refreshing chopped parsley with tomatoes, onion, bulger wheat and mixed with lemon juice and olive oil – $5
  • Rolled Sandwiches with Falafel – seasoned mixture of fava beans, garbanzo, onions, parsley and spices with tahini sauce – $5
  • Beef Shawarma – marinated tender pieces of beef with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, pickles and tahini sauce – $6
  • Gyro with Beef – beef with tomatoes, lettuce, onions, pickles and creamy tzatsiki sauce – $6
  • Baklava – layer of flaky phyllo dough stuffed with walnuts and rose water – $2.50

Mexican:

  • Tacos – choice of carne asides, chicken, higado, chorizo, lengua – $1.25
  • Tortas – traditional Mexican sandwich with your choice of meat – $6
  • Burritos – your choice of meat with beans and rice and onions and cilantro  -$6

Hours: Open daily for lunch
Contact: unknown

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