Of the handful of African eateries in Moorooka shopping centre, Mu-ooz is the best known and longest established as well as the hardest to find.
Hidden away at the base of a spiral staircase at the rear of the Ranchhod arcade, it has quietly built a reputation based on its tasty Eritrean fare that won’t break the budget and its ethical base. Originally set up as a catering outfit by women refuges it has since gone on to create work and training for other refugees from both Eritrea and surrounding war torn places and today the profits from the restaurant are put back into the community of women and their families.
As for the food itself, it’s rustic, simple and best suited to share. Entrees average $8 and include the deliciously tasty sambusa sigha – a crispy meat sambosa and the more-ish staple enjera bread with dips – this also makes a great sauce mopper or singular snack. Mains are divided evenly between non-vegetarian and vegetarian and options from the former include zighni the spicy beef curry with the unusual flavours of berbere and tasame with garlic and tomato, or the molikya – a North African spinach sautéed with chicken onion and spices.
In turn the vegetarian highlight has to be the rich mushroom stew – tsebhi kantisha. Regardless of choice all mains come in at or under $15.
If you can catch one of their gentle and ritualistic coffee ceremonies, do- it’s a real treat.