In our workplace, I am in charge of the big wheels’ food—for breakfast and lunch—each time that monthly meeting takes place. I witnessed them change food for lunch from time to time but there is this one that became like a constant for breakfast. After two years, it is safe to say that this particular food is really something.
Ever heard of the word “Manoosha”?
Manoosha (also man’ousheh) is the equivalent of the word “pie” in English. It is the singular form of manaqish (Arabic word for more than one manoosha) and it is the word for the special vittle that we are to talk up.
Basically, manoosha is a very popular Middle Eastern traditional food that is composed of dough topped with thyme, cheese, or ground meat.
The Manoosha concept, which rooted from natural simple ingredients, was founded in Riyadh back in April 2001. The credit for the advent of this restaurant (i.e., Manoosha) goes to the two Saudi entrepreneurs who live with the passion for food combining traditional and modern cuisine though classic dishes and for reviving old recipes of manaqish and a notion of establishing a leading Middle Eastern restaurant chain.
Within a short period of time, Manoosha became well-known as a local fast casual dining establishment that serves a selection of premium quality pies. Its modern trendy setting not only offers manoosha that comes with traditional ground meat toppings but with mixtures of vegetable toppings such as spinach, tomato, cucumber, olive slice, or lettuce. Some varieties combine three or four of those veggies like “Labnah Bayteya”, “Manoosha Halloumi Wrap”, or “Lahem Be Ajeen”. This puts the three as top favorites of health conscious people. Further, this traditional food already took on different new tastes, shapes, and sizes to become a piece of dough flavored to ones’ palate.
Manaqish are similar to pizza, which is also another item as fukharat in their menu, but different in the way they are being served. Unlike pizza, manaqish are folded or rolled before being sliced. Although the pies are eaten for breakfast in the office, they are recommended for lunch too.
Let us get to the talking point: the way the manaqish are being cooked. The store uses the classic cooking in stone hearth ovens, which has quite a distinctive interior design, to cook the pies’ high-quality raw ingredients.
This way of cooking enables the restaurant to meet the highest standards of quality—the realization of the concept that revolved around dough and stone hearth cooking. Hence, the name “Manoosha”.
At present, Manoosha operates 11 restaurants here in Riyadh and is embarking on an aggressive plan that will make the brand expand not only regionally but internationally. This would not be far from possible with their continued efforts to keep up with their concept fresh and on the cutting edge of the restaurant industry in food safety and hygiene. Add to that the fact that Manoosha has already established itself as a market leader in the Manaqish business.
To our big bosses in the office, Manoosha has always been a part of their routine especially during whole day meetings. When I read from the restaurant’s website that the combination of thyme and olive oil, which are mixed with any variant of manaqish, are believed to be an excellent stimulant to the memory, I stopped wondering why the bosses are so into the pies. That information, to a degree, has a lot to tell about why they so want these manaqish. I must say I also got hooked on the food for that long.
So whoever happens to be in the area, you might as well stop at Manoosha one time if you are in the mood for pies with herbs toppings that will leave a warm tinge on the sides of your lips or for a hot cheese to melt in your mouth. I assure you, once you tasted one of those manaqish, you would always find yourself biting your way back into their succulent delights. All of which are at a very reasonable price ranging from SAR5 to SAR20.
For more information such as the respective lists of the branches and the complete assortment of delicious culinary choices to suit your appetite, please visit Manoosha’s website at www.mymanoosha.com.
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