Ceru in South Kensington offers a menu inspired by cuisines from the Levant region (Turkey, Cyprus, Lebanon, Syria, Israel, Jordan). Their menu caters for a wide range of tastes, and their all day menu is entirely gluten free (excluding the pita bread)!
What did we order?
We started with some classic dips alongside some freshly baked Greek Pita Bread. Their Pita bread was amazing, and sprinkled with what I believe to be Za’atar (a yummy middle eastern spice mix). Their houmous went excellently with this warm bread, but it was the other dips that we really enjoyed.
As you can see, the greek pita break comes in a basked and with a spice mix on top.
We tried the starter which consists of three dips in one plate [£5.00], and we chose the Fadi, Pancar and Ceru Hammara dips to sample. The Fadi is made from roasted zucchini, yoghurt, lemon, tahini, garlic and, the Pancar is made from roasted beetroot, yoghurt, garlic, crushed pistachio and the Ceru Hammara is a tangy red pepper dip with walnuts and pomegranate molasses. Our favourite was the Ceru Hammara, which went perfectly with the warm pitta.
From the veggie section we ordered roasted aubergines [£5.00] with Chermoula (a marinade), a herb yoghurt and lohz (roast nuts). The aubergines were slightly too mushy, but the taste of everything with the yoghurt was great.
All the meat is certified Halal and sourced from British farms. We tried these Persian Kafta [£8.50], which were aromatic spiced beef patties served with edamame beans, caramelised onion and a tarator (tahini based) sauce. The tarator sauce on the bottom complimented the beef patties well. The actual beef patties themselves I felt lacked some flavour, although I think the aim of all the dishes was to have a subtle flavour overall.
Next we tried the Shish Taouk [£8.00], chicken breast cubes marinaded in paprika and lemon served on top of a herb yoghurt. We preferred this to the Kafta above, and the pairing with the herb yoghurt was delicious. The meat was cooked very well, and was perfectly tender.
For sides we got Orez Ceru [£4.50], an arabic scented fried rice with crispy onions, sultanas and parsley. This was a new dish for me, and I really enjoyed the subtle taste and texture of the fried rice. It went amazingly with the chicken.
Also on the side we got the stuffed red pepper [£4.00], which was roasted and stuffed aromatic rice, green lentils and a herb crust on a tahini sauce. This dish was very interesting, and was a really good option for a vegetarian. The stuffing of the red pepper was very tasty.
This is just an image of my plate after sharing everything!
We also drank some of their Signature Turkish Apple Tea [£2.00] which is a must have if you come here. It tastes like sweet warm apples (in a good way) and I am always so excited when a restaurant has it on their menu (which is not many restaurants).
We enjoyed the novelty of eating this cuisine; we thought it would be flavours that we had already experienced but it was very different. This restaurant isn’t for people who like large portions, as each dish was a small sharing plate, but it is great for those who want to try something different.
As a side note, they do offer a weekend brunch which I really want to try, as they serve Shakshuka at this time!