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Nov 9, 2010 05:11 PM

Kibbeh Nayeh in Toronto?

Just wondering where in Toronto one can find kibbeh nayeh. Ideally somewhere that has it on the menu as a matter of course, not needing to be pre-ordered (and not fried or baked kibbeh, but the raw stuff)
Close to Roncesvalles Village would be good

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  1. Good luck

    I love sitti-made kibbeh nayeh, especially with some arak to wash it down. I still haven't seen it in Toronto, but somebody must do it.


    1. If only! Never seen this in Toronto, I would guess it's too labour intensive for the middle eastern restos here, which tend towards quick & casual. The only place I've heard of that reliably serves it is Alep in Montreal, which is probably a bit of a hike for you :)

      Would love to be proven wrong though.

      3 Replies
      1. re: dxs

        I find it odd that nobody has it in Toronto. I live in Windsor and can think of at least a couple of Lebanese restaurants here that offer it, not to mention a bunch in Michigan. I ordered something similar at Rendez Vous, an Ethiopian restaurant on the Danforth in Toronto and it was delicious, though obviously the spicing would be different from kibbeh nayeh.

        Rendez Vous
        1408 Danforth Ave, Toronto, ON M4J1M9, CA

        1. re: 1sweetpea

          what was the name of the raw lamb dish? im not sure which lamb on the menu is raw, just see the kitfo

          1. re: Pigurd

            Yes, it is kitfo, but a lot of places will routinely lightly sear the kitfo, especially for non-Ethiopians, so make sure to specify if you want it completely raw when you order it. Some restaurants offer both options on their menus. The odd one only seems to offer it cooked, but I'd still ask if they can do a raw version. If they say no, it's a strong indication that their meat isn't fresh enough for a raw dish.

      2. Thanks for this. I thought this might be the response

        1. Zanobia in mississauga has it on their menu, I haven't tried it though.

          7 Replies
            1. re: Onara

              I just purchased an entire lamb at a halal butcher in Windsor. I made kibbee nayee tonight, but with a Turkish cig kofte type seasoning. It rocked! The lamb was slaughtered the day before, so it was ultra-fresh. I'm surprised that Toronto middle eastern restaurants don't do raw kibbee. Pretty much any Lebanese or middle eastern restaurant with a full menu offers kibbee nayee in windsor. Now, if only we had a Turkish cig kofte source, not to mention manti, doner, etc., but alas, I am SOL in Windsor.

              Come to Windsor for kibbee nayee at el-mayor, tabouli or mazaar. It's oh-so good!

              1. re: 1sweetpea

                What's the food like at Zanobia? Where are the owners from?

                1. re: Vinnie Vidimangi

                  I haven't tried the food at Zanobia. I went there a few times to smoke the argeleh. I can't remember where the owners are from, I went there a few years ago. I want to say Lebanese, but don't quote me on that.

                2. re: 1sweetpea

                  Sounds delicious sweatpea. I've made my own tartare at home, so it's not much of a stretch to make kibbeh nayeh. If you want to put your recipe down in the home cooking section, it would be appreciated.

                  I'm a bit ignorant about which middle eastern countries make kibbeh, other than Lebanon. The relatively low proportion of Lebabenese people in TO explains a few of the shortcomings of our local dining scene (shawarmas, kibbeh). I'm from Ottawa, and miss these things.

                  1. re: grandgourmand

                    I have a wonderful cookbook on Middle Eastern cuisine, written by Claudia Roden. She gives a simple and standard Lebanese version, but then offers several variations, including the Turkish çiğ köfte version, which has a laundry list of ingredients. I get the impression that most or all Arab cultures have their own regional variants, using spices and seasonings that feature prominently in their own recipes.

                    Really, the most important ingredient is ultra fresh lamb, preferably from the leg, which is quite lean. I went into my halal butcher in Windsor to inquire about purchasing a whole lamb and was told that slaughtering would occur on the Friday and I could come in the next day to have it butchered and portioned any way I wanted. They ground the meat for the kibbeh right then and there. I couldn't ask for anything more fresh.

                    One of these days I'm going to have to travel to Ottawa and sample these legendary shawarmas I've read about. I can get them in Windsor and Detroit, but I'd love to compare the Ottawa offerings to the ones I'm accustomed to here.

                    1. re: grandgourmand

                      are there any resturants in ottawa that have kibbeh nayeh?

              2. I was checking out a menu for Mezza Lebanese Kitchen on the Queensway near Royal York - a new to me place so not sure how long it's been there - and I noticed kibbe on the menu. It's available only on weekends or by 24 hr advance order.

                1 Reply
                1. re: sman

                  Strange that they make it with beef... thanks for posting though, looks like it's worth checking out when in the area.