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Kosher Pastry Oven, Kemp Mill Shopping Center

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Because of squidsdc's utter negligence in keeping us apprised of Nova Europa, I went to Kemp Mill Shopping Center today, only to find that the Portuguese restaurant is closed for lunch on weekends.

Across the parking lot was Kosher Pastry Oven, a little bakery and semi-service cafe, featuring only a few items of interest. A Greek Salad ($10) was enough for two people, and could have been found at any of 250 other restaurants in the area. It was nothing special, but still far better than the Cheese Omelet ($7) which was overcooked into complete, rubbery dryness.

Much more intriguing were the Israeli dishes of Shakshuka ($9), a passable, mercifully moist pan-fried omelet of three poached eggs atop a chunky, stewy mixture of canned tomatoes and green peppers, and best of all, the Malawach Plate ($9), KPO's malawach being an excellent version of the Yemeni thousand-layer pancake, served with two hard-boiled eggs and some spicy pepper puree, along with a fine little tub of oily tomato-based sauce - if there's margarine in this crepe, I do not want to hear about it.

The atmosphere is clattery, the service is brusque, and I certainly won't be rushing back, but it was worth it (for me, anyway) to have stumbled across these two relatively uncommon dishes. The adjoining bakery also sells Hamentashen for $1.50 (file this away for future reference, as Purim starts on March 10th this year).



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