Executive Chef Ryan Moore knew he wanted to put kushari on the menu when he opened Sababa, a modern Israeli restaurant. He turned this craveable Egyptian street food—a common snack found in Israel’s melting pot of a national cuisine—into a popular small-plate offering.
Kushari typically sees a combination of rice, lentils and chickpeas topped with crispy onions, garlic vinegar and spiced tomato sauce. “It’s a simple dish that eats very well, but I struggled with how to refine the plating. It’s usually just a pile of food with sauce on it,” Moore says. He solved the dilemma by filling a Savarin mold with the rice, lentils and chickpeas, then cooking it directly on the stove. “It cooked perfectly! I turned it out onto a plate and had an empty well in the center to hold the tomato sauce, which includes warm spices like cinnamon, allspice and clove,” he says. “Kushari is vegan and blends itself well with the rest of my menu.”