Whilst in Cairo you must try koshary, a celebrated regional dish composed of a complex mixture of rice, lentils, macaroni, chickpeas and spices. Wholesome, vegetarian and delicious, Koshary Abou Tarek’s take on the classic is one of the best in town. Diners can eat their koshary as it comes and enjoy the rich taste of oil and spices, or drench it in spicy curry sauce to add a Middle Eastern kick to their meal. The perfect destination for a hearty meal on the go, this takeaway style restaurant also has a small indoor seating area for those wishing to sit down and enjoy the city’s best-loved quick bite.
Koshary Abou Tarek, 16 Marouf, Qasr an Nile, Cairo, Egypt. +20 100 105 9950
Hailed by locals as the best shawarma restaurant in the city, Abou Ammar El Soury is the place to go to experience this divine Arabic delicacy. Here, diners select their meat choice from lamb, chicken or beef, all varieties of which are slow cooked on a spit for hours to ensure the tenderest of textures. The meat is then served in a freshly cooked wrap alongside rice or crispy french fries and a fresh salad.
Abou Ammar El Soury, Al Montazah, Heliopolis, Cairo, Egypt. +20 2 22576048
The American-style burger joint Mince remains the undisputed king of street food. The menu is a tempting list of all-American classics, from waffles and pancakes at breakfast, to chicken wings and panko tenders at dinner. Then of course, there’s the burgers: succulent, juicy and packed with sauces and ingredients, diners can’t go wrong with the beef, chicken and veggie burgers on offer. With a variety of creative combinations on the menu, ranging from the piquant four chillies burger to the Armenian sausage option, guests can branch out from the classics and enjoy a unique taste here.
Though the menu at Abo Ahmed is wonderfully diverse and includes pasta, shawarma, fish and curry dishes, its main allure is its feteer, a kind of Egyptian pizza. This pastry layered with cheese, vegetables and minced beef, depending on the choice of the diner, lies somewhere between an Italian calzone and a Middle Eastern baklava dessert. Abo Ahmed is one of the best places in town to try this staple delicacy, offering an exhaustive list of feteer options, from mushroom to seafood, catering for vegetarians too. Those who still have room can sample one of the restaurant’s sweet feteers, made using ingredients such as cinnamon, apple, custard and chocolate.