ethnic foods co
I wandered into Ethnic Foods Co. in Osseo looking for some zaatar seasoning, and I walked out with a pressure cooker, rose powder, a masala kit, and an exciting new connection.
Kavita Mehta is the owner of the small shop/café, and she is a big find for anyone who loves the idea of cooking/eating Indian, Persian, Middle Eastern, Asian, or most any ethnic foods but has no idea how to start. Her shop is stacked with her private-label Ajika spices, which she blends and packages by hand in the warehouse behind the storefront. There are things on the shelves that I have never seen in the metro before: jaggery, Egyptian dukkha, sago palm pearls, and more. So it helps that Mehta offers classes; her popular Savor World Flavors class covers Indian lentil dal stew, Thai chicken satay, vegetables with mustard seeds and coconut, Middle Eastern roasted cauliflower, and Greek tzatziki served with Afghani rice.
If you’re not quite ready to get your hands dirty but are still intrigued, know that in the same space Mehta has recently launched Collage, a global café at which you can try the dishes that she prepares with her spices and local produce from the store’s CSA. You might find pad Thai, Afghani eggplant with yogurt sauce, or even a roasted Minnesota beet salad. The menu changes with the seasons and the available produce, and considering there are so many cuisines to cover, you could expand your horizons and tour the world weekly. 208 Central Ave., Osseo, 952-593-3000, ethnicfoodsco.com