As the MLA for Edmonton-Highlands-Norwood, Janis Irwin is spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing her favourite place to eat.
“My riding of Edmonton-Highlands-Norwood is home to so many amazing restaurants,” Irwin says. “I couldn’t choose one, so I put some of my favourites in a hat, and the winner was Mama Asha Cafe!”
The family-run cafe first opened its doors along Alberta Avenue in May 2017, and since then it has served homestyle Somali recipes to a community that has unofficially been called Edmonton’s “Little Mogadishu” — as well as one hungry MLA.
The menu features Somali staples like shaah (a Somali spiced tea), shakshuka and samosas filled with beef, chicken or veggies, with almost nothing priced above $20.
But, for Irwin, you don’t need to dig too deep among Mama Asha Cafe’s main dishes to find her go-tos.
“My favourite dish is the chicken suqaar with a side of the mouth-watering Somali flatbread called sabaayad.”
Over the better part of a decade, the 25 Best Things to Eat feature was a summer staple for Avenue readers. Edify keeps the spirit of that program alive in 2021; we will feature the food picks of prominent Edmontonians throughout the spring and summer. Keep checking the food section at EdifyEdmonton.com for weekly updates to our Best Things to Eat recommendations!
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