Rahel Ethiopian Veggie Cuisine

Happy New Years! I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays and spent lots of time eating delicious vegan food, I know I sure did.

To kick-start 2012 (a bit late albeit whoopsies!) I want to bring you all a review of an absolute must try vegan restaurant in LA: Rahel Ethiopian Veggie Cuisine, a 100% vegan restaurant in little Ethiopia on Fairfax.  Last week was my first time dabbling in Ethiopian food even though I am no stranger to intense spices or eating with your hands. Not so surprisingly, I totally loved it!

 

 

Rahel Ethiopian Veggie Cuisine

1047 S Fairfax Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90019

(323) 937-8401

Hours: Mon-Sun 11 am – 11 pm
My fav dining partner (in vegan crime) Bess and I came to Rahel for dinner on a Friday night at 8:30 pm and the restaurant was completely empty! Literally when I got there Bess was the only one sitting inside. I kinda felt like a baller renting out Rahel’s for a romantic evening out, but two parties arrived shortly afterwards and were seated directly next to us (a little strange since the whole restaurant was empty) which then put a cap on the volume of my naturally loud speaking voice. Shucks.
The decor is simple yet warm and the staff is exceptionally friendly.

One of the dining areas

Rahel’s is BYOB (no corkage fee!!!) which is always an awesome perk to any more casual dining experience.  Bess had eaten at Rahel’s once before so I let her order for us and she decided on the all-to-appropriately named “vegan feast.”
The cuisine at Rahel is made up of spicy vegetable dishes mostly in a thick stew format called wat. The wat is served atop injera, a large flatbread typically made out of fermented teff flour. Rahel has gluten-free injera, another crazy perk to this all vegan yum-house. How awesome is gluten-free injera, woo!! Traditionally, Ethiopians eat with their right hands and use pieces of injera to pick up bites of entrées and side dishes. Although I love eating with my hands I asked our waitress for a fork just to be safe (I was wearing white, recipe for disaster since I always spill regardless) and she happily obliged.
Our waitress came to our table to offer Bess and I the traditional hand wash in which a  jug of warm water is poured over your hands and into a bowl to catch it before you eat your meal.  Gotta love hygiene!
The vegan feast started off with two lentil filled sambussas as our appetizer, which are kind of like the Ethiopian answer to samosas.

Sambussas

The sambussas came with two dipping sauces on the side which I obviously got right to tasting straight up. The red one was crazy spicy but the green one was the perfect amount of kick and the cooling tomato aspects of the sauce paired so nicely with the fried sambussa.

Dipping sauces

About 10 minutes later our main dish came out and it was HUGE!!!!

Vegan Feast Combination: Cabbage Stew, Whole Lentil Stew, Split lentil Stew, Split pea Stew, String Beans mixed wioth carrot, Zucchini Stew, Kale Chopped, Chopped Tomato mixed with onion and jalapeno, Sunflower seed mixed with Injera.

Ya’ll know how much I love getting a little taste of everything when I eat anywhere, and this entrée was essentially a sample size portion of all their menu items on top of gluten-free injera. Swoon. It also comes with a side of injera to scoop up all the stews.

Gluten-free injera

Everything was delish! I was surprised at how mildly spiced all of their dishes were since I had heard such horror stories shall we say about the intense spices Ethiopian food usually features.  My favorites were the kale (shocker) and the zucchini but I really loved every single thing on the plate. Injera is SUPER filling btw so pace yo self! Bess and I pretty much killed that entire plate and licked our fingers. Although Rahel’s offers some bomb sounding vegan deserts (oh hi cheesecake and baklava) Bess and I were far too stuffed to dabble in a post meal sugar high. We both loved our meal here and if in the area I would totally come here again, especially to try their all you can eat vegan lunch buffet for like 10 bucks. (You had me at buffet.) Rahel’s is cheap, delicious, there is great service and you can taste a bunch of dishes in one order all while eating with your hands. I’d def say that’s worth dabbling in this all vegan ethnic gem for. Yum!

 

xoxo

Your Vegan Girlfriend

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2 thoughts on “Rahel Ethiopian Veggie Cuisine

  1. What a great meal…though if those people sitting next to us were eavesdropping, they may have gotten quite an earful of conversation hehe.

    We def need to go back… love that it is BYOB too!

  2. That vegetarian feast combination looks great. At the Ethiopian restaurants that I ate at in Philadelphia, they were NOT fancy restaurants. Their literature said that the injera is actually what they use instead of a plate. Or in other words, instead of washing their plate, they eat their plate. That means no need to wash plates. Of course the plates were much bigger than the food so you could eat some of it with your meal.

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