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Shawarma, beef pepperoni, fried okra and hush puppies

Ok perhaps the most random list of things, but I have been on a food hunt for a while now, and realized maybe it's time for some assistance. I would love to find the following in the bay area:

Real shawarma, not weird gyro meat. I'm talking about all lamb on a skewer being roasted and freshly shaved for your sandwich. I would also prefer it served in pita bread, but for good shawarma I'll consider other options

Beef pepperoni, I don't eat pork, and have had beef pepperoni at Blondies, but I really don't like their pizza. would like to buy some myself so I could add it to my favorite takeout pizza, or make pizza at home. I know I could ask them, but I have this extreme paranoia that they are lying to me and it really is pork, rather not go there. I know, I got issues to work out

Finally I lived in Texas for a few months and loved getting brisket with a side of fried okra and hush puppies. In all the debates about BBQ on the board I haven't seen one place that has these sides offered. The BBQ does not have to be great, but that is a bonus.

Thanks and I'm excited to maybe find some of these things

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  1. I remember seeing frozen beef pepperoni pizzas at Samirari's Import on Mission near 26th. http://www.yelp.com/biz/samiramis-imp...
    You could try Halal butcher shops and Whole Foods too for the actual beef pepperoni.

    I haven't tried it, but I've read good reviews about the fried okra at Cav that appears on the menu when it's in season. It's been on my list to try for a few years. Also, they had a chef change recently so I'm not sure if that will affect the okra.

    Although people say the Memphis Minnie's has good brisket, I have not found that to be the case. Haven't found any hush puppies to write home about except for an occasional sighting at higher end places like Town Hall, Maverick, etc. Good luck!

    1. Goood Frickin Chicken on 29th St. at Mission has "lamb shawerma" on their menu.


      Good Frikin Chicken (Goood Frikin’ Chicken
      )10 29th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

      1. For good quality shawarma go here-
        203 Parnassus Ave. at Stanyan
        SF, CA 94117

        Goood Frikin’ Chicken
        # 10 – 29th Street
        S.F., CA 94110
        (Corner of Mission & 29th)

        Mama Lucy's Soulful Comfort Cuisine- might have fried okra I liked the collard greens and they offer bbq on thursday and friday , might need to confirm that.

        Southern Heritage Bar-B-Q & Fish- in Fremont has several sides don't remember the okra being on the menu but they make a good bbq pulled pork sandwich and red beans.
        Nellie's Soulfood Restaurant & Bar- Oakland has okra once a week on the menu

        1 Reply
        1. re: Lori SF

          Nellie's okra is not fried and as I recall (only ordered it once) it is mixed with boiled white potatoes. Not bad but not the cruncy pods I prefer. I like them whole as well ~ not cut in slices. The Marin farmers market has terrific okra in season, OP may be better served frying some at home. Totally of the topic, I really like the Talk of Texas pickled okra sold in a lot of local grocery stores.

        2. Turkish Kitchen in Berkeley has a lamb doner which is cooked on a spit and served with
          various breads.

          1. The best shawarma I've had is at Truly Mediterranean. It's all lamb except on Tuesday and Friday when it's all chicken (they have only one spit). It's served burrito-style in lavash, but they have pita on hand, maybe you could get that as a special order.

            I can't think of any barbecue place with a fryer. Some fried-chicken places have fried okra and hush puppies. Powell's Place, for one. They list BBQ ribs on their menu but they don't have a pit.


            Truly Mediterranean
            3109 16th St, San Francisco, CA 94103

            1 Reply
            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              The Mediterranean in Concord also does a good version, a good lunch stop if you have to visit the dark nether regions of Fry's Electronics.

              They used to have a location in Berkeley but that is now a Turkish place that has been reviewed elsewhere on this board, I haven't tried it.

              1847 Willow Pass Rd Ste B, Concord, CA 94520

            2. I like the hush puppies at J's pots of soul on Octavia. Didn't like much else, but I haven't tried the pumpkin pancakes others have recommended.

              J's Pots of Soul
              203 Octavia St, San Francisco, CA 94102

              1. Shawarma: there used to be a great ME takeout place at the corner of 16th and Valencia and another out in the Sunset on Irving around 20th - not the gyro mix, just beef. I think they used lavosh, not pita.

                Okra: is the soul food place on Church across from Safeway by the Lutheran church still there? I forget the name. but authentic down to the pepper vinegar squeeze bottles (for the greens) on the table.

                9 Replies
                1. re: hill food

                  The place at 16th & Valencia is Truly Mediterranean.

                  1. re: hill food

                    "nother out in the Sunset on Irving around 20th"

                    Upper Sunset. Yumma's at 721 Irving between 8th and 9th ave.
                    They do use a lavasch bread but the schwarma meat is pretty darn good.
                    I'd like to think there is better in the city, but I can't think of anywhere.

                    There is also place across from the Main Library that has amazing schwarma, but sadly no pita.

                    By the way, good pita shouldn't be thin enough to break on you, or taste like cardboard. Sometimes the lavasch is just better then crappy pita.

                    1. re: sugartoof

                      agreed - bad pita ecch. too many use either gummy (fresh outta the bag) or over-toasted.

                      Yumma's sounds familiar, are they the same folks farther out? I haven't been out that way much since I lived there (19+K).

                      1. re: hill food

                        Not sure, but on second thought we might be talking about different places. Yumma's is the one up by PJ's, Villa Romano, etc.

                        There's also a great mediterranean spice, and fruit market on Taravel (somewhere in the 20's) that has a great selection of pita. No idea why more fallafel/schwarma places don't use the better stuff. The price is about the same.

                        1. re: sugartoof

                          I live in the neighborhood and Tahoun on Parnassus is much better than Yumma's the lamb and chicken is a better quality and more flavorful.

                    2. re: hill food

                      There's Sunrise Deli and Cafe on Irving near 21st.
                      Never been there myself b/c I hear mixed reviews about it and I'm usually having Asian food when I'm out there.

                      1. re: Candice

                        Sunrise has great falafels. Dunno about anything else there.

                          1. re: Lori SF

                            guess I saw Yumma from the N, sorry to hear Sunrise (that must be it) has slipped.