Leading up to this year's Best of L.A. issue (due out Oct. 4), we'll be counting down, in no particular order, 100 of our favorite dishes.
66: Koobideh at Kabab Mahaleh.
On Friday afternoons, the Pico corridor is a happening place -- especially at Kabab Mahaleh, where the Persian Jewish community packs in for a lunch of turmeric-saturated ground meat skewers called koobideh, served with a trencherman's portion of sangak, baked sesame flatbread, roasted in tall ovens just behind the counter; a couple of charred plump tomatoes; raw onion; and a pile of aromatic lemon basil.
It's a pretty obscene deal for the neighborhood: A one-skewer plate with all the fixings costs around $6, plus you can add on zereshk polo, a dish of fragrant saffron-tinted rice and dark red barberries, for a few dollars more.
The best part occurs just after you place your order -- there is a din of Farsi as the cashier yells your order back to the cook. A large skewer of spiced ground meat hits the flame, and a long tongue of pale dough is rolled out and draped onto the oven. The smell is enchanting, and a few minutes later, your own freshly made platter arrives. It's a princely sensation for the price of a pauper.
Check out the rest of our 100 of our favorite dishes. Suggestion? Write us a comment.
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