Day 96–A Locavore’s Lunch–Sitti


Hard to tell how warm and soft this pita is from the photo!

 When Ellie was very little, I enrolled her in a creative movement program for preschool children at the Raleigh School of Ballet. We spent every Saturday morning at the school and then we would join one of her classmates and her mom at next-door Neomonde Bakery. Owned by a Lebanese American family, Neomonde features food from the Middle East and the Mediterranean area. Their food is really absolutely delicious. Their homemade pita and flatbread are so good that many local grocers carry it. Part casual restaurant, part grocery, part take out, Neomonde has a stellar reputation in the area for fresh, Mediterranean and Middle Eastern food. I don’t know how many quarts of humus I ate during those post-dance meetings, but it was all good–lots of garlic and a topping of cold pressed olive oil. YUM. A few years ago, the owners of Neomonde opened their own restaurant, Sitti, in downtown Raleigh, and while the food and ambiance are more upscale (I wouldn’t bring two rowdy ballerinas here!), it is all fresh, homemade and amazing. Sitti is a member of North Carolina’s 10% Challenge, meaning they have agreed to purchase at least 10% of their produce and food products from North Carolina farms.

Ellie isn’t a tiny dancer anymore, but we took a spring break opportunity to venture out to Sitti for a girl’s lunch. We started with an appetizer of falafel, which arrived carefully placed on a cucumber yogurt sauce. It was very good–crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. We ate them before we could take a photo! We also had a basket of fresh, very hot pita with an olive dipping sauce. Also delish. Could have stopped there, but no, we continued…

Our lunches were huge, super fresh and wonderful. Ellie had the chicken shawarma pizzette–a flatbread “pizza” with chicken shawarma, cheeses, roasted garlic and onions. It also came with a salad as big as her head. I had the curried chicken special–a huge mound of fresh, chicken salad loaded with my new favorite spice, turmeric! The chicken salad was served on a bed of field greens, cucumber, tomatoes, oranges and roasted red peppers. The whole thing was sprinkled with feta cheese. Needless to say, we have lunch for tomorrow as well!


My curried chicken salad was delicious and lovely!


Ellie's chicken shawarma pizzette was made on fresh flatbread and cooked to perfection in the wood oven. Yum.

Kudos to Sitti for bringing Mediterranean and Med-inspired food to downtown Raleigh. And for giving us a continuation of mother-daughter time centered on healthy, fresh food.