I generally post every few weeks, but I’m posting two entries tonight becuase my last entry, Andy Nelson’s BBQ, was a no brainer. If you have a kid and you live in Baltimore, you’ve probably been there or have heard about it already as a good place to go. On the other hand, Dukem is a little more out there.
Dukem offers Ethiopian food. I really like Ethiopian food. My wife, not so much.
Ethiopian food is generally served communally on one large plate for an entire table. The plate is covered with a thin bread, and all ordered different menu items are served on the breaded plate.
My wife’s main complaint with Ehtiopian food is that different vegetables, meats and lentils are often half-hazardly put together by Ethiopian restaurants on the breaded plate, so you neither have an idea of what you are eating nor an ability to limit what you are eating. For example if you personally don’t eat beef and someone in your party orders beef as an item, the beef ends up mixed with the vegetables at many Ethiopian places. But my wife’s general complaint with Ethiopian food is not an issue at Dukem. Rather Dukem puts different items in clear spaced areas on the breaded plate, so you can eat what you like.
The other unusual aspect of Ethiopian food is you eat it with your hands. Some people don’t like this, but those people have forgotten what it means to be a kid.
Dukem is a fantastic family restaurant in the Mt. Vernon area of Baltimore City (not far from the Meyerhoff), because they really like kids. And this is perfect food for kids. Ethiopian food has items such as lentils, potatoes, egg, easy to chew chicken and beef and plenty of bread. Kids love all those things, and Dukem does them well. Additionally, because everyone eats with their hands, young children like my toddler don’t have to worry about being embarrassed from having difficulty with utensils. Everyone uses their hands, so kids don’t feel self-conscious.
Kids have no preexisting opinions on what food is or should be. They like what tastes good. They like being where people want them, and they like being where they can be kids. Dukem is a great family restaurant for all these reasons. It’s also very inexpensive and should cost a family of four about $40, which also really helps in this economy.
1100 Maryland Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21201