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The Serendipitous Flatbread of the Citadel: Lamajoon Restaurant

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Well, that was certainly surprising.

I rarely eat at malls; the food's always an afterthought and it tends to be a festival of mediocre chains, some of which exist only in malls. But while shopping for a new wallet at the Citadel Outlets, I got hungry and decided to see if there wa anything edible in the food court.

The name "Lamajoon" jumped out at me, though it looked like a typical kabobery. The eponymous dish was stacked in a Lexan display case looking forlorn and unwanted. I reconsidered briefly, but decided to plunge forward.

I ordered two (at $1.99 each—half a dozen is $9.99). The cashier took my order back and the owner came up, surprised at my order: lahmajune and tahn (ayran—you know, yoghurt drink). "You know this?"

"Yes. I live in Anaheim. We have a lot of Lebanese places."

The pile of lahmajune stayed put. I heard the thunk of a rolling pin. These lahmajune were being made fresh for me, and when he returned, he had lemons and a pile of not two, but four flatbreads.

I still wasn't expecting much—it's a mall food court after all—but they were great. Gossamer-thin, with nearly equal amounts of bread and topping. Floppy in the centre, with a perfect crispy edge with just the right amount of char, and the filling was very delicately spiced. Hit these with a spritz of lemon when they're still hot and they're just about perfect.

Sometimes it's good to have your biases smacked.

Lamajoon Mediterranean
150 Citadel Dr., Commerce
323-727-7102

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  1. wow, impressive, thanks for the tip. hounds can find deliciousness anywhere, even a mall food court.

    1. Excellent!!! I can't tell you how many times I've been by there whether to bet a new piece of Le Crueset, some designer heels or a pair of discount pumas... And never once had given a thought about the food court... I worked nearby so I always knew I could scratch up something not too far away... Nevertheless... I will be stopping by soon! They just opened a new Columbia Sportwear! :)

      --Dommy!

      1. WOW! Thanks for the tip. My wife and I were just there to buy a Dutch Oven from the Le Crueset store and had a forgettable meal at that obnoxious faux 50's diner. Had we known that something better could be had elsewhere we would have made a bee-line for the food court to get lahmajun. Guess we'll have to make another trip.

        1. As if I needed an excuse to shop the Citadel...THIS IS IT! Can't wait to try it. Have never bought anything at the food court, but this is now a must-visit. Thanks for the tip!

          1. Mmm, fresh made lamajoon are an excellent find. The place near me has them under a heat lamp, this looks like a far superior choice. Thanks for the great review!