Sunday, March 21, 2010

Our Field Trip to the Helmand, San Francisco

Last Sunday, a few of us on Basement crew gathered to relax (sitting!) and enjoy each other's company above ground. Especially after the packing marathon that was the March 1 due date. We dined at the Helmand Restaurant in San Francisco. The story goes that this restaurant (and a sister restaurant in Cambridge, MA; cti, check it out!) was owned by one of President Karzai's brothers. Up until a couple years ago, the restaurant was in North Beach by Telegraph Hill, but a rock slide red-tagged the building, and now the restaurant is on Van Ness Ave. Our group included Annette, Carol, Deborah, Pam, and Teresa and her husband and son. I had my camera in my knitting bag, but somehow forgot to take photos (didn't knit either). Still kicking myself. A few days later, I stopped by with my camera, and owner Daoud took some photos for us. Not as much fun as seeing the smiling faces of our group, but wanted you to see --

Pallow rice with raisins and carrots --

Teresa's vegetarian dish was beautiful and included pumpkin (is this the dish, Teresa)?

Not sure if any of us ordered this, but had to show some lamb --

Muhammed always warmly greets us --

Ann and Daoud

Ann always orders vegetarian Aushak, a ravioli filled with leeks

The Afghans are celebrating Nowruz, the Persian New Year and celebration of the Spring Equinox. Best wishes for peace and prosperity is a traditional greeting. Nowruz Mubarak!

Want to know more about Afghan food and the new year holiday? Read our Afghan-American friend Humaira's recent post on her Afghan Cooking Unveiled blog.


Annette said...

I attended this informal get-together and thoroughly enjoyed it. In the basement there is no time for chit-chat. So, getting to know each other personally was great. I had a lamb and spinach dish that was delicious. I hope there are more of these in the future.

sfmammamia said...

Yes, that was my vegetarian special: a beautiful composition of spinach, tomato-ey okra, silky eggplant, a creamy pumpkin dish that tastes like candy(that my 19-year-old son is addicted to--Helmand is one of his favorite restaurants) and of course that wonderful rice, yummy! and I'm not even vegetarian! Great food, great conversation!

Kathy said...

This sounds so delicious!

Afghan Ann said...

I emailed Church World Service in Afghanistan to wish them a Happy Nowruz, and I mentioned that we recently enjoyed an Afghan dinner here. They invited us to Kabul -- and said the local food is very good. How's that for an invitation!

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