Food critic Shehani reviews the Swahili cuisine at Jambo’s Grill
Africans who live along the Swahili Coast have an incredible variety of meals with fish, tropical fruits, coconut milk and exotic spices, many which reflect the influences of travellers who have touched their shores. From Arabs and Indians with spices from the east to Persians with fragrant saffron, or to the Portuguese with their unique marination techniques, Swahili food creates a palette of extraordinary flavours.
This cultural melting pot is exactly what you notice when you enter Jambo’s Grill restaurant. Located in, close to Dubai Creek and part of the old Dubai, the restaurant brings you to Africa with a big map of East Africa on the wall and the African statues.
Friendly and informative staffs originally from East Africa are at hand to help you make your choice from a tempting menu. And this is a tough choice to make when you know that most of the food is cooked on a charcoal grill that amplifies each and every flavour. The menu includes shrimps, grilled chicken, beef fillet, lamb chops, grilled steaks and a really special biryani.
The food is authentic. The kebabs, Sambusa, chicken wings are a good start. The main course including the Caveman Steak (Australian ribeye), Prawns pilli pilli and Simba chicken are all just irresistible. Add to that the unique biryani from the island of Zanzibar – aromatic basmati rice flavoured with saffron in a rich spicy sauce, so authentic that you will literally think you’ve landed in the idyllic archipelago. The Grilled Chicken in Simba Sauce is the hottest and spiciest thing on their menu, which will nicely be balanced with the fresh mango juice.
As a first experience with East African cuisine, I will definitely go back to Jambo’s Grill to encounter a perfect getaway to the tropical Swahili coast!