This being the last post of the Mombasa eats series, were going to end it with a bang and highlight a dish that’s loved by many…. BIRIYANI. The components that make up biriyani appear simple, but do not be deceived because a lot of work goes into preparing good biriyani, which explains why many restaurants have the item on select days. Having biriyani at the coast is a must because the melting pot of cultures that exist in the region are predisposed to dishing up fine plates of this dish. I was able to sample biriyani from two very different places and here is what I thought about them.
Forodhani Restaurant (Chicken Biriyani Kshs 450)
Forodhani is located in the heart of Mombasa’s old town and sits right on the shores of the indian ocean making it a fantastic place to have a meal. I ordered the chicken biriyani with very high hopes but I was disappointed. The meat sauce was overpowered by tomato paste which reduced its flavours to nothing but tangy. The portion was very generous and could easily be shared by two people, but the flavours were very misplaced. The up side to this experience was the restaurants setting which was lovely by the sea.
Swahili dishes ( Mutton Biriyani Kshs 200)
There are some awesome people you meet at the perfect time and when you look back you realize it’s all God Oooooo. This applies to my Uber driver David who is the reason I was able to discover this amazing biriyani joint. As soon as I got into his car, David and I hit it off talking about food in Mombasa. He shared so many recommendations on where I should eat and when I asked him about the best place to have biriyani in town, he decided to take me since it was on our way.
We got to Swahili dishes located in Kongowea kwa karama, which is a simple small restaurant right by the road. There are 2 huge sufurias on the restaurants verandah where they serve the biriyani from. Whats on offer here is fantastic! The highlight was the meat sauce which had deep layered flavours – a combination of sweet and savoury which went well with the perfectly cooked rice. The place is very popular for their biriyani because by the time we got there at 2:00pm, the food was practically over. One serving of biryani was 200 which is a steal considering the generous portion and how good it was. The owners of the restaurant were extremely friendly and very proud of their operation which is understandable because they have a good thing going.
Mombasa has so much to offer in terms of food and I hardly scratched surface in this series. The biggest outtake i got from this trip is you don’t have to spend a lot of money to eat well.
Thanks to David I was able to experience the amazing biriyani at Swahili dishes. This man is an undercover foodie and is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to eateries in Mombasa. If you ever need someone to take you around town for anything including food escapades please contact him on 0720758656.