The Inquirer’s Rick Nichols tried shawarma for the first time in Russia. Now, shawarma’s a Middle Eastern food… So Russia is just a bit far away for that. But when Nichols tried the Israeli-style shawarma at South Street’s Mama’s Grill, he had an epiphany:
You can tell time by the shape of the big cylinders of shawarma at Mama’s: At lunchtime they are bulky stacks - one chicken, the other turkey - a hunk of lamb fat and an onion on top, oozing juices on the meat. Go in the evening and they’re cones, whittled down to a point.This is the venture of Shauli David, 26, whose father owns Mama’s Vegetarian, at 18 S. 20th St., where David says Israeli customers started asking for shawarma. Each day now he marinates chicken and turkey thighs with seasonings (cumin, paprika, salt and pepper), slow-roasting layers of them next to the glowing vertical heaters.
As for Russian shawarma, well… you can find everything on Google.
[Photo via Barbara L. Johnston/Philadelphia Inquirer]