mediterranean lunch truck

When I ask friends for Temple University food recommendations, I certainly get a lot of them. When I mention Temple University Hospital area, I get nothing, so I went with my gut on this one.

I spotted the Mediterranean Lunch Truck on the north side of Broad Street, just south of Ontario Street. There was a pretty large crowd around it so I figured I’d give it a shot.

I ordered a falafel wrap. It came with crisp outside/soft inside falafel, hummus, lettuce, and tomato. That falafel was one of the better ones I’ve had from a truck/cart in Philly! If you find yourself in the Temple University Hospital area, definitely give this falafel a try.

Mediterranean Lunch Truck
Broad Street (north side, just south of intersection of Ontario St)
Philadelphia, PA

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2011 philadelphia vendy awards

2011 philly vendys
This past Saturday was the first annual Vendy Awards for Philadelphia! I remember attending last year’s Vendys in NYC, and they announced that Philly was going to have their first in 2011. Well, I never forgot and was certainly looking forward to this.

2011 philly vendys - gigi and big r
There were a total of 8 trucks nominated. The 8 trucks were: Cucina Zapata (Thai/Mexican), Gigi and Big R (Caribbean/American Soul Food), Guapos Tacos (Garces’s taco truck), King of Falafel (Middle Eastern), La Copine (Brunch), Magic Carpet Foods (Vegetarian), Sugar Philly (Desserts), and Sweet Box (Cupcakes).

the judges' table

Three awards were up for grabs on Saturday, the Vendy Cup, Best Dessert, and People’s Choice. To decide the winners, a large panel of judges included Mayor Michael Nutter, Chef Jen Carroll of 10 Arts, Chef Mike Solomonov of Zahav, Drew Lazor of Philadelphia’s City Paper, Brian McManus of Philadelphia Weekly, Jamie Shanker of Midtown Lunch Philadelphia, and Lindsay Lidge, wife of Phillies pitcher Brad Lidge and The Food Trust partner.

crispy mahi taco from guapos tacos

Lots of great food was served such as a soul food sampler from Gigi and Big R, a mahi taco from Guapos, falafel from Magic Carpet and King of Falafel, tacos from Cucina Zapata, macarons from Sugar Philly, and cupcakes from Sweet Box.

2011 philly vendy cup winners - gigi and big r

The winners were Gigi and Big R for the Vendy Cup, Sweet Box for Best Dessert, and Cucina Zapata for People’s Choice.

At last year’s Vendy’s I didn’t get to try some food since some trucks ran out. It happened again this year! I heard some great things about Sugar Philly’s salted caramel macarons and I had none of it. This just means I’m going to have to get over there on my own and get em!

I’d definitely like to see this event grow next year with more trucks and more food. I had an awesome time and look forward to next year’s!

All the proceeds of the Philadelphia Vendys benefited The Food Trust. The Food Trust is holding another Night Market featuring more Philly food trucks soon, go check it out!

Check out more photos after the jump:

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taim mobile

Late last year, Taim started to offer falafel on the streets of NYC in addition to their brick & mortar location in the West Village. I’ve been wanting to get Taim falafel ever since that day. One of the corners of the truck reads the definition of the Hebrew word taim, “highly pleasant to the taste, delicious.” I agree completely.

Since I was in the city during the week it was my goal to order the harissa falafel sandwich this time since I had green last. The sandwich comes with the falafel, hummus, Israeli salad, pickled cabbage, and tahini. Fantastic. It was even better than what I remember! Falafel had a crisp outside with a just spicy enough center and wasn’t dry.

The truck unfortunately only has the green falafel daily. The harissa was on special when I went and this week it’s spinach & jalapeno falafel! It sure sounds pretty good!

You can see their weekly schedule on their website or follow them on Twitter!

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a&m halal

I’m a huge falafel fan, and after hearing about A&M Halal from three sources (friend of mine who went to Drexel, Foobooz, and Food Network’s ‘Best Thing I Ever Ate’), I wanted to try this when I got a chance.

falafel sandwich

Luckily for me, I was in University City to check out a bridge recently and my partner was more than happy to try another falafel place for lunch. He ordered the falafel sandwich, which had falafel, lettuce, tomato, onions, and sriracha wrapped in a pita. It may have had some tahini or hummus as well.

falafel omelette sandwich

The falafel omelette sandwich is what I read about and what sparked my interest in the first place. I love eggs and falafel individually, but together? This could be interesting.

Nestled in a fresh hoagie roll was an omelette, falafel, tomatoes, peppers, onions, and sriracha. I took one bite and was impressed. Definitely tasty. I still prefer the traditional pita falafel sandwich, but this is definitely a delicious alternative and worth coming out to try if you haven’t had it!

Best part besides being good eats? The woman is super friendly and gives you samples of falafel while you wait for your food to be cooked AND both sandwiches were only $4 each!

A&M Halal
Drexel University Campus
Corner of Ludlow Street & S. 31st Street
Philadelphia, PA

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sahara grill

A couple weeks ago I joined a Lebanese friend and another for dinner at Sahara Grill in Center City Philadelphia.

I let my friend order the appetizers and we started off with a fattoush salad and pita with hummus and baba ganoush.

This was the first time I had fattoush. The fried pita pieces with the greens and veggies tasted pretty good together. Soft and warm pita arrived at the table with homemade hummus and baba ganoush. The hummus was pretty fantastic as well as the baba ganoush. I’m still trying to warm up to baba ganoush though, since I’m a recent eggplant convert. I’ll always choose hummus over baba ganoush anyday.

I was craving falafel all week so my entree choice was a no brainer, the falafel platter. The falafel was cooked perfectly too..the inside was perfectly moist and the outside had a nice crisp. They served it alongside a salad, tahini, and more of that delicious hummus!

If only I could produce the same results making falafel at home..

Sahara Grill
1334 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107

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