I love street food. I believe it’s where you get to taste the heart of a city without hurting your wallet. If you’re into Middle Eastern street food, our friends at FRANCIS are more than happy to introduce you to the world of Israeli delights. Their latest menu, Skew it Sundays ($360/person), is available on the last Sunday of each month (12–10:30pm), catering to Middle Eastern foodies – or people like me who are curious about Middle Eastern cuisine but are completely foreign to it.
The Skew it Sundays menu offers diners the choice of two types of skewers (from a total of four) and 10 flavourful meze dishes and is best enjoyed by groups of 2–6 people.
From left to right: Israeli salad, carrots and harissa, muhammara and baba ganoush
The set comes with freshly made pitta bread, which made a great carb companion throughout our meal. One of my favourites from the meze selection was the baba ganoush, an unexpectedly refreshing side that reminded me of a potato or egg salad but that is actually made of aubergine and tahini. Another side that took me by pleasant surprise was the muhammara, a mashed-potato lookalike, but a fiery version made with puréed chilli and walnut. A great palate cleanser, the Israeli salad was the silent hero of the evening, freshening up my taste buds in this hearty dinner – I enjoyed its balanced acidity. The marinated feta cheese was like an Israeli rendition of Indian paneer. This was well paired with pomegranate seeds for super-refreshing bursts of flavour.
FRANCIS also did justice to the simple yet classic hummus, which had a rich, smooth, creamy consistency and was drizzled with braised chickpea gravy. We mopped the hummus dish clean with our pitta.
Since there were only two of us, we got all four skewers on the menu: baharat-spiced chicken thigh, Wagyu beef rump, Ibérico pork and lamb kofta. The chicken thigh was the smallest in terms of portion size and was slightly dry, so it didn’t impress us much. The Wagyu beef rump wasn’t as juicy as expected, but it fared better than the chicken. The true MVPs from the skewer selection were the Ibérico pork and lamb kofta. The lamb was the richest in flavour of the four. The lamb’s gamy taste went well with the fresh herbs used in the kofta mix, and the flavours were further amped up and enhanced during the grilling process. The Ibérico pork slices were thick slabs of fatty heaven, grilled with a hint of char – they melted in our mouths with every bite. Oh yeah, I definitely took my time savouring these bad boys.
If 10 side dishes and a pair of skewers aren’t enough to satisfy you, you’ll be glad to hear that dessert is served to complete your dinner. We were so stuffed by the end of our meal, but we had to make space in the sweets department for this beautiful tahini mousse, which was served with generous amounts of crunchy almond and pistachio bits.
If you’re keen to explore the world of Middle Eastern cuisine, there’s no better way to start than with this special Skew it Sundays menu. We love that the menu gives a variety of dishes that you can try without feeling overwhelmed. Surprisingly, we found ourselves more fascinated with the colours and flavours of the meze dishes than the skewers, as each side dish was so different in its own way.
4 and 6 St Francis Street, Wanchai, 3101 9521, no bookings
This write-up is based on a complimentary media tasting provided in exchange for an honest review and no monetary compensation. The opinions expressed here represent the author’s.
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