If you’re tired of the usual for dinner, you’re in luck: You can try cuisines this week from around the world during the third annual Refugee Restaurant Week.
Refugee chefs partner with favorite local spots to create dishes inspired by their home cultures. The event, hosted by the Idaho Office for Refugees and its Global Gardens program, began Monday and ends Sunday with dishes at four local restaurants: the Stil, 786 W. Broad St., Boise; Grit American Cuisine, 360 S. Eagle Road, Eagle; Locavore, 3110 S. Bown Way, Boise; and Petite 4, 4 N. Latah St., Boise.
Vegetables in the dishes are purchased from refugee farmers at Global Gardens, a program of the Idaho Office for Refugees, when possible. The program helps diverse families be involved in healthy lifestyles and entrepreneurial training through harvesting and cooking fresh produce.
Here is the lineup:
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Grit American Cuisine is offering Syrian-inspired cuisine by guest chef Saddam Alkadro and Grit’s Paul Faucher. Chicken kepsa, kofta siniyah (a Middle Eastern take on meatballs) and fattoush salad are being offered through Saturday.
“The reason we do this is because in culinary, you’re always learning, and there’s always something new, and there’s so many different cooking cultures,” said Faucher, the Grit’s chef and co-owner. “We like to see their culture, their cooking, and make good friends.”
Locavore is offering Somali cuisine by guest chef Rahma Abdi Ali and Locavore’s Christine Reid. Through Sunday, you can try baasto suugo pasta (whose sauce is made with tuna and chunky tomatoes), bariis Somali-style rice, and maraq goat.
The Stil is keeping it sweet by offering Syrian-inspired ice cream made with apricots, raisins and salted almonds. Guest chef Najlaa Omar and The Stil’s Jenna Kieta are serving this through Sunday.
Co-owner Dan Sell says the flavor, “After the Rain,” has done “reasonably well” early in the week.
Omar was guest chef at The Stil for Refugee Restaurant Week last year, too. He mixed rose water, orange blossom water, and pistachio to create the flavor “Nostalgia,” which can still be found periodically on the menu.
Petite 4 is offering Nepalese cuisine through Saturday, including a pork and beef momo with signature sauce. Guest chef Ratna Subba joins Petite 4’s Sarah Kelly.
For more information, visit idahorefugees.org.