Multicultural Auburn is a food enthusiast’s dreamland! The eclectic array of cuisines and speciality stores that Auburn has on offer is unlike anywhere else. I visit Auburn very frequently and these are some the gems of Auburn I’ve come across:

 

 Bread and Bakeries:

The varieties of bread available in Auburn are cheap fresh and plentiful. There are three exceptionally good  bakeries in the Beatrice Street end of the retail strip. In Beatrice St, Turkish bread is available freshly baked from Koy Firini Country Bakery right next door to the Afghan bakery, Afghan bread is a soft long flat loaf randomly dotted with holes that give it a curious appearance. Its made from mostly wholemeal flour so its good for you as well.

Just around the corner on Auburn Road is the Auburn Lebanese bakery where it’s exciting to watch the hot freshly baked rounds of Lebanese bread shoot out of the oven fully puffed up and slide down to the ladies at the bagging counter below. You can’t get any fresher that.

bread auburn

 

For something sweet head across the road to the Menzil Turkish Bakehouse with a tempting display of pretty decorated biscuits and baklava.

menza auburn

 

Downtown in south parade  is the “Nice Bakery” where you can grab a tray and pair of tongs and select from dozens of sweet and savoury Asian pastries starting at under a dollar each. This pretty pink bakery is very popular with the local high school students and locals alike

 

nice bakery

 

Coffee and Wood Fired Lounge: Impress Wood Fired Cuisine

Tucked away in one of the quieter corners of Auburn Impress has modern impressive décor creating a comfortable atmosphere with a choice of table or lounge style seating.

The extensive menu offers a variety of gourmet wood fired pizza’s and pide’s alongside chargrills, light meals, coffee, cake and dessert

I have called in just for coffee but I am tempted to return soon to try some “Turkish Breakfast Delight” ; Sucuk, Pastima, free Range Egg, feta, Kasar & Tulum Cheese, Olives Tomato Cucumber, Jam Butter and Freshly Baked Turkish Bread for $15.90.

impress cafe

   

 

 

Middle Eastern Supermarket: Gima

Gima's is the one stop middle eastern supermarket. Here you will find a little bit of everything including a deli and butcher. Gina's grocery lines are excellent. If you look among the fridges, freezers and shelves you will find a range you have never seen in any supermarket before. There is Gozleme pastry, frozen boreks, even refridgerated  greek pitta bread ready to heat finish off in your frypan or on your BBQ . Also available in the aisles are many varieties of Lentils, legumes, wheats flours teas and baclava

I recently visited Gima’s looking for something to quickly put together a moonlight picnic to take the outdoor cinema. I had no time to fuss with cooking so I purchased mixed nuts, olives, fruit, borek and simit bread to team with cheese, chutney and crackers from home . All were fresh and tasty and looked attractive laid out on our picnic rug. I have been back to Gima’s already for more of those delicious mixed nuts at approx $7.50 for ½ kilo.

  simit bread gima  nuts gima   

  

 

Tong Li and Kims Modern Life

Tong Li is the largest Asian supermarket in the area. You can wander up and down the aisles and marvel at all the unusual noodles sauces stocks and curry pastes on offer along the well stocked shelves. I can be a guessing game to figure out what some products are but that’s all part of the experience. The fridges along the back wall are where you will find a very good range of fresh noodles, wonton wrappers and steamed pork buns.

I find the Asian grocers are the best place to pick up your bunch of parsley, mint or coriander. It’s much cheaper than the regular supermarket and often a fresher more generous bunch. The same applies to dried herbs, spices and other pantry staples like coconut milk and soy sauce. You will get a much more bang for your buck here.

Don’t walk past the kitchenware. Bamboo steamer baskets, big pretty soup bowls, chopsticks, soup spoons and teapots are an essential part of the Asian cooking kit.

I only stumbled across Kims Modern Life during this week. I had planned to  pop into Coles only to find it gone and replaced by this snappy little Korean variety store which sells its noodles by the kilo.

For the most part it’s a Korean supermarket but what caught my eye were the colourful clever kitchen gadgets and utensils. Next time I plan to return without a child in tow so I can have a better look!

noodles kml

 

Yum Cha: Address

The small lift to get to this restaurant is hidden away behind a sim card store and could easily be missed if you don’t have your eyes peeled. But once you step out of the lift door and are greeted by the live lobsters in the rows of tanks you are excited that you have found it and shocked that a place so large can remain so concealed.

yum cha auburn

Kebab shop: Everywhere

Many Auburn locals have their favourite kebab shop but I’m not particularly loyal and like visit a new one each time. Walking down the streets of Auburn you can catch the scent of the charcoal fires being used to cook the shish kebabs. The variety of colourful salads and pickles on display in each store is enough to entice anyone. Authentic pides, gozlemes, Turkish pizzas and of course donor kebabs are all commonplace. It’s best you visit Auburn and try all the kebab shops out for yourself to find your own favourite.

Jasmins Lebonese Resturaunt

My pick from the Lebanese restaurants in Auburn is Jasmins. The last time I went I had the char grilled chicken with lemon yogurt and olive oil and it was delicious. My work colleagues shared huge platters of tabouleh, kebabs, hummus and falafel all served with flat bread and pickles. The platters are very generous and looked amazing. I regret not taking any pictures of the food but I do believe there will be an upcoming visit back there in the not to distant future.

 

Real Turkish Delight: 

The sparkeling  jewel in the crown of the Auburn food gems is the celebrated "Real Turkish Delight". This business was established in 1974 and its elegant shopfront with its stylish window displays and signature burgundy awnings has remained unchanged for as long as I have known it.  The Turkish delight made and sold here is authentic and distributed throughout Australia. This store is proud of its two recorded Guinness World Records attainted for making the world’s biggest Turkish delight.

Also on offer here are chocolates and biscuits all made on site.  This unique family operated business has been featured numerous times in the Australian media including a segment on SBS's Food Safari. No food safari to Auburn would be complete without stopping by here and picking up a box of this very pretty delicacy.

 

This is just a handful of what Auburn has on offer. Go for a wander down the street and let me know what other gems you find.

Gourmet Safaris (Maeve O’Maera) runs Turkish food tours of Auburn. Go to http://www.gourmetsafaris.com.au/cart/index.php?mod=events&catid=6 for more information.

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