Aki’s Bread Haus, 2402 Central Avenue NE

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Our destination.

Aki’s Bread Haus is located amidst an area of rich possibility. On the same block you will find Sabor Latino, Holy Land Deli, Al Amir, and Eastside Coop. Walk a block south to Sen Yai Sen Lak, El Taco Riendo, Khao Hom Thai, and Adelita’s. I may just sell my home, rent an apartment above one of the businesses, and dwell in this land of diversity.

According the the friendly woman who is working here today, Aki is the childhood nickname of the owner, who emigrated from Germany,  Although the “Bread Haus” designation helps us to know what is being purveyed (usually enough for this lover of baked goods), we must ask and experience to learn the specifics. Aki’s makes breads, pretzels, pastries, and cookies with a German twist. One can also order the soup of the day.

Yes, I have previously visited Aki’s to assuage a cookie craving. While the cookies are great, today I am looking for lunch. Hence a cup of mushroom barley soup and a LARGE cinnamon bun. Ooftah! This is why I limit my food adventures to once per week and attempt regular exercise in between.

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The server gave me a spelt roll gratis! After contemplating the options, I ate the cinnamon roll and took the spelt roll home.

First, the soup–chewy barley, toothsome cremini mushrooms, carrots, celery, onions, all in a tasty broth with good body. I approve. The coffee is amongst the best I have tasted on my Central Avenue adventures, better than some of the coffee shop brews. And then there is the cinnamon roll–soft yet sturdy, with a great cinnamon flavor, not too sweet nor excessively iced. The spelt roll will be taken home and experienced later. It is cute.

During my visit, while several patrons came to purchase bread and pastries, I was the solo eat-in customer. Come on, people! Abandon your usual haunts and take a drive down Central. You won’t be sorry.

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On display at Aki’s; some items are for sale

As noted in an earlier posting, NE Minneapolis is undergoing rapid change. Next week we will take an observational walk from 18th Street up to 28th Street and back, noting enroute what businesses have come and gone since our adventure began in April.

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Holy Land Deli across the street

Bon voyage!

 

Central Deli and Coffee, 1831 Central

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According to my tightly structured plan, today’s lunch site is Kim’s Vietnamese. Pulling up in front, I observe tightly shut blinds. Posted in the window is a handwritten sign informing the world that due to retirement, Kim’s is now closed. I would swear it was open just last week…alas.

Next in line up the street is Central Deli and Coffee, a non-descriptively named East African eatery of unassuming appearance. Upon arrival the only person visible is a red-vested man sitting in a booth. I later learn he is one of the owners. After perusing the menu, being a non-meat eater, I need help figuring out which items are suited to a vegetarian who eats fish but not seafood. The red-vested man suggests fish and rice, so I order fish and rice.

After taking a seat in a booth by the front window, I observe a man coming in, dressed in sports jacket, jeans, and an orchid color dress shirt. He spots the writer and does a double take. Perhaps not too many slightly past-middle-age women of Scandinavian ancestry eat here? As the gentleman eats his food, he carries on a conversation with his phone on full-volume speaker, which bothers me not at all. Thereafter, several other customers enter, still leaving me as the only woman, and only person of non-East African descent—and I feel perfectly at home. As to the furnishings and décor, there are a total five booths and two tables covered with a pleasant dark-red printed fabric, which nicely coordinate with the booth upholstery and the wall color.

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Fish and Rice

In just the right amount of time for me to check out the place and begin writing, delivered to the booth is a heaping plate of lightly coated white fish cooked to a nice crunch, on a bed of saffron rice with raisins and tiny vegetable bits, topped with mild onions sautéd in a spice that had turned them a pale orange. Iceberg lettuce and a container of SPICY avocado green-colored dressing accompany the main course. After a bite of incautiously dressed salad, followed by many sips of water, I discover that a tiny dab of the dressing is great on the fish. The meal comes accompanied by a whole banana, which I find charming. All in all, the food is delicious. I would return, and I would again order the fish and rice.

(On my way home I stop at Aki’s Bread Hus for a post-lunch treat, selecting two cookies—a snickerdoodle and an oatmeal raisin. They are dangerously yummy.)

More to come next week from Maya Cuisine!