El Gadaa (loosely translates to ‘the chivalrous, stand-up person’) brings all Egyptian street-cart food in Shiekh Zayed under one roof and backs it up with a franchise operational system, ensuring we enjoy all our street food favorites without any of the street’s unwanted extras… you know what we mean.
Owner Sherif Zaki wanted to fill a gap in the food market by providing quality, clean Egyptian street food at affordable prices. His ambition is not to charge you an arm and a leg for a plate of koshari or a taameya sandwich, rather he wants to make El Gadaa’s high quality offerings accessible to all for very reasonable prices.
Signatures Dishes & Dishes Sampled
Heading in on a Friday morning, the staff was all smiles. We went ahead and relinquished all ordering control to Zaki and sipped on our free drinks as we waited. A pour-it-yourself station with three glass dispensers neatly lined up offered karkadeh (cold hibiscus drink), sobia (a sweet and starchy coconut-rice milk), and kharoub (carob drink), drinks you would typically find street vendors offering in plastic bags with straws. Best part? You get free refills as you eat!
As familiar smells wafted through the air, our stomachs began to grumble. Soon enough, relief arrived in the form of Shakshouka, Foul Eskandarani, Foul Bel Zeit El Har, French Fries, Pickled Eggplant, Messa’aa, Taameya sandwiches, Baladi Salad, Fried Haloumi Cheese Sticks, Cheese and Tomato and Baladi bread, freshly baked in an authentic baladi oven right where we can see it.
A hearty and filling Egyptian breakfast with all the trimmings, everything exceeded expectation! Especially the Messa’aa, which tasted just like home, and the Cheese and Tomato, made with Feta cheese and a surprising addition that took this traditional breakfast plate to another level: tehina!
We hardly got through all the dishes; much to our dismay, there was plenty left over despite the reasonable serving sizes, but everything was incredibly filling. We were then served tea in individual-sized traditional teapots accompanied by fresh mint leaves chilled on ice. After a few soothing sips, we were ready for dessert. Again drawing on street-cart food culture, dessert was none other than sweet potato; it came in oven-baked form with béchamel.
Other Menu Options that Appealed & Beverages Available
Everything! Although on our next visit we will pop in for lunch to dig into Koshari El Gadaa and a traditional Liver Sandwich!
As for the beverage options, they keep it simple with the drinks in the glass dispensers (karkadeh, sobia, kharoub), tea, and sodas.
Décor & Ambience
Fresh and clean, with traditional ahwa chairs in oranges and greens. The open kitchen is lined in shiny white ceramic tiles, exuding an air of cleanliness and freshness. A brick baladi oven is complemented with a brick wall on the opposite side. A street cart acts as the counter, giving an authentic feel to the theme.
Clientele mix: During our visit, we saw dads on early morning breakfast runs, and families with little ones enjoying a homey breakfast that mom doesn’t have to slave over on a Friday morning.
Worth noting: The freshly baked baladi bread is available to buy alone as in a bakery.
Takeaway and delivery: Delivery available from 8 am to 12 am in Sheikh Zayed and Palm Hills.
Opening hours: From 8 am to 12 amAddress: Exit 14 Mall, on the same road as Fresh Food Market, across Greens Compound.
Tel: 0103 022 9000
Facebook and Instagram: Al-Gadaa