Monday, June 14, 2010

Mimi's Kabob Could Be Your Neighborhood Joint

Mimi’s Kabob could be your neighborhood joint if you live in the south county – a real option for quick meals or takeout on Rte 108 in Clarksville.

Mimi’s is the classic ethnic spot in a strip mall, and it stands out because they’re paying attention to the food.  Half the menu is Afghan, similar enough to Maiwand Kabob to qualify as the sincerest form of flattery.  Half is pizza, the result of taking over an existing pizza spot.

So far, we have stayed on the Afghan side of the border, and we keep leaving happy.  Long ago, I started with a lunchtime sandwich, but Mimi’s has become our place when we want something delicious but simple.  A late-lunch mezze of appetizers with Mrs. HowChow’s family.  Grilled kabobs and chicken curry when we wanted dinner, but not the heaviness of burgers or cheesy Mexican.

Most Mimi’s meals are a variation on grilled meat, a vegetable, rice and bread.  You should go for the bread alone.  I may prefer Maiwand’s bread just a touch for its delicious char, but hot bread turns every meal into something special.  At Mimi’s, you can wrap that bread around grilled chicken, lamb or beef, plus variations and specials like the chicken curry, which was a mix of shredded and chunked meat in a tasty sauce.

Afghan food – at least as offered around here – is an accessible cuisine.  The meat is juicy and flavorful, but it’s not spicy.  The pumpkin and other vegetables are interesting enough that I can’t make them at home, but mild enough for someone who doesn’t relish the spices in Indian food.  On our last visit, a couple was serving out three preschool boys from a table with pizza, grilled chicken and rice.

That rice shows the skill that makes Mimi’s stand over most other places.  Even spots that promote interesting entrees often plop tasteless boring side dishes.  For example, the rice and beans at La Palapa Too keep me from going there often.  In contrast, Mimi’s rice is light and tasty.  Somehow, they add a sheen of oil and herbs to make it feel luxorious, but no oily taste and no heaviness.

In the same way, white meat chicken comes out juicy, and the pumpkin side dish is tender and rich.  With the bread and homemade sauces, it’s hard to think of a comparable place for $7-9 a person.  Better yet, it all travels pretty well, which makes Mimi’s nice when you want to get out of the house or when you need to bring dinner home.

If you go to Mimi’s consider asking them to substitute a vegetable side dish for the salad.  I know Maiwand in Columbia will substitute.  The salad is fine, but the pumpkin and other vegetables can be exceptional – and certainly bring more flavor to the plate.

If you are in Clarksville, definitely check out Great Sage for vegetarian food or El Azteca for Mexican.

Mimi's Kabob
12345 Wake Forest Road (Rte 108)
Clarksville, MD 21029

NEAR:  This is a block south of Rte 32 on Rte 108.  It is a shopping center on the east side of Rte 108, and the entry is from a side street, so you need to turn just south of the shopping center.  This is a great place to stop if you have been shopping at Roots Markets farther north on Rte 108.


Steve Fine said...

Mimi's Kabob is my favorite local eatery. I go there at least once a week. Make sure you all try all of the veggies.

Anonymous said...

We go quite often as well. The kabobs are great, but we also do the "American" fare quite a bit as well. The pizza is very good - better in my opinion than anything else in Clarksville (Pizza Hut, Ledos, Pasta Blitz) and some other favorites are the gyro, calzone, and reuben. The gyro is huge - they put it on the naan and (please don't take my man card away for this), but almost has too much meat. The calzones are equally as large and are made fresh to order.

StephenC said...

My family and I are fortunate to live less than 5 minutes away from Mimi's Kabob, so it's our "go-to" place when we order out (my favorite dish is the chicken and kofta combo). It's also my parents' "go-to" place when they visit us from Long Island. Yes, they will substitute the side salad for a side dish; we usually get the veggie side dishes--chick peas, spinach, eggplant, etc. My kids love the fresh, warm naan bread. Great place all around. I'm glad we live so close by!! :-)

Amber F. said...

We tried it for the first time tonight, and it was delicious! I wish I had read this first so I knew to substitute a veggie for the salad--we ordered a full side of the pumpkin, and I could have eaten that all night long! One of the people working there also told us they deliver within a 5 mile radius. For $11 I got enough food for 2 (maybe 3) meals. I can't wait to go back!

YumGrrl said...

Love the Choppan Kabob and the Pumpkin Vegetable Dish -- so good!!

Eric said...

Is the new Mimi's kabob in Turf Valley an offshoot of this one?