What’s in the Pot?

I passed La Bague de Kenza recently and discovered it has a full Middle Eastern food menu and a three-course lunch for 18 euros.

The front of the shop is for take-out food and pastries, and that’s where I ordered my lunch. They kindly took my order and invited me to sit either outside or in the rear dining area. It was a cold day and I sat in the small, inside dining area decorated with warm jewel-toned, patterned chairs and pillows.

First up was chopped eggplant and red peppers served chilled in a pool of olive oil. It had a fresh taste to it but was a little bland. A bit of salt went a long way and livened the dish up. Next, a terra cotta tagine pot embossed with a pretty decoration with steam coming out of the top was placed on the table. The waitress took the cover off and the still boiling tagine of chicken, lemon confit, green olives, and potatoes smelled divine. I was in such a hurry to eat it I burnt my tongue twice and then patiently waited for it to cool down. (I made the mistake of going when I was super hungry.) It was one of the better tagines I’ve had in a long time, with moist, tender chicken, intensely flavored olives, and wonderful bitter taste of the lemon. Instead of pita bread, I soaked up the tagine juices with thick tasty semolina bread.

136 rue Saint Honore, 75001. The 18-euro three-course menu is served Monday to Friday till 3:30PM


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