Foto: Caio Pimenta/ SPTuris
“Ready to go on a trip?” That is Olinda Isper’s trademark question to all customers who are about to try the famous and award-winning desserts from restaurant Tenda do Nilo, run by her sister, Xmune Isper, and herself, both Lebanese. This delicacy is called One Thousand and One Nights and leaves both tourists and locals dazzled by the flavor of Arab cuisine.
Another item on the dessert menu—semolina cake moistened with orange water, honey and covered with a heavy cream-based frosting topped with ground pistachio—won the Paladar award in 2007.
After almost forty years in Brazil, the charming Lebanese owners say they love the city of São Paulo and especially the neighborhood of Paraíso, where they live and work. “São Paulo is my homeland, my oxygen, habib” says Olinda.
Xmune says she finds all the ingredients needed for their dishes in São Paulo, especially at the Municipal Market. Some dishes on their menu have undergone adaptations in order to adjust to the local palate, like ofatte. “Considering how snoobar seed is so expensive and difficult to find in Brazil, we substitute them with Brazil nuts. The recipe has been a great success” says Xmune.
Another novelty for the Brazilian palate is the use of cinnamon in savory dishes, like the wheat with ribs. Or the use of coriander (widely used in the Brazilian Northeast region, but very little in the State of São Paulo), indispensable seasoning for falafels.
The flagship of the menu at Tenda do Nilo, however, is still the hugely popular fried kibe.
Come check out our menu at the Tenda do Nilo website.