Best Cheap Eats
Babani's Kurdish Restaurant
The best cheap eating doesn’t feel as though you’ve eaten cheaply. At Babani’s you can grub for a fair price, and are treated like family at America’s first Kurdish restaurant. Family-operated for over 20 years, Babani’s has a newer, bigger space in St. Paul for bigger, brighter eating experiences. And it is an experience. Kurdish cooking offers the familiar flavors of the Middle East faves you know and love, with heavy use of legumes, rice, grilled meats, eggplant, and goat cheeses. But the preparations are all their own: wheat dumplings stuffed with spiced meat and deep-fried; red-sauced eggplant almost edging into Italian territory; lemony yogurt soup you could use as currency. Delicacies like these can be had for the eye-popping price tag of around $8 at lunch (includes salad), and about $12 at dinner (includes soup or salad).