Streetfood in Amman, Jordan

It’s 12 o’clock, I’m hungry, and all I can think about is going to Hashem for lunch. The problem is that Hashem is nestled between two buildings thousands of miles away-in Amman, Jordan. This poses an obvious problem for both me and my stomach, since I’m currently lacking both a trust fund and a private jet. I’ll have to settle with memory recall and living vicariously through others for now.

Which leads to my current appeal. Please, trust me; when you find yourself in Amman around lunchtime, go to Hashem. And then go back again, for me.

Just thinking about it now is making my mouth water.

Here’s the deal. This place has been serving delicious Jordanian food since 1952. Located downtown (there’s a great spice shop across the street-go get some), Hashem has hosted nearly every diplomat, royal, and celebrity that has spent time in Amman since it’s infancy. I was told that King Hussein used to go every Friday and sit with the people in the open air seating,  while he was alive.

Hashem is a mix of indoor and outdoor seating, with most people choosing to sit outside. I was thrilled that we got a table outside with a view of the street. I love people watching, especially in foreign countries. Almost as soon as you sit down, you’ll be offered tea. This warm, sugary-sweet concoction is the perfect compliment to the meal ahead. There also isn’t a menu. There’s a pretty standard selection of vegetarian options and alongside the tea, you’ll receive a plate of tomatoes, onions, peppers and mint. You’ll also get a sheet of paper with pita. Before I go any further, take some of that mint front the plate and add it to the tea (yasssss).

Since there wasn’t a menu, we just asked for a mix of items. Very quickly, we started getting plates of hummus, falafel, moutabel, ful medames, and pickles. If you know me at all, you know that this is pretty much my perfect meal. Lots of things to dip and mix and share, plus pickles. Yes. Just, yes.

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The moutabel was garlicky, roasted eggplant perfection. It paired perfectly with hummus and pita. The falafel was fluffy and light, perfectly crunchy. Likely the best falafel I’ve ever had. If you’ve never had ful, it’s basically mashed fava beans mixed with olive oil, spices, and a hint of lemon. It’s worth an order, especially if you’ve never had it before.

I was doing a mental happy dance throughout my entire meal. This was probably one of the best meals I ate throughout this round of travels. So please, do us both a favor and eat here.

{Note: I recently discovered that Hashem also exists in Aqaba. This delighted me.}

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