By J.D. Herman
In a sleepy shopping center on Hillcroft just south of Braes Bayou is a kosher restaurant not to be missed. My Pita at 9806 Hillcroft is a causal stop for great food in the Brays Oaks Management District.
If you have the temerity to call yourself “My Pita” … well, your pita game better be superior to the competition. The skeptic in me approached my first bite warily but the fluffy, warm pita served with my falafel was perfection. I am a sucker for good bread and this pita is exceptional–completely worth the calories. The menu at My Pita has all the best Middle Eastern and kosher options you would expect from shwarma to shakshuka.
On my first visit I married my pita to an excellent falafel and Israeli salad. The texture of the falafel was as I hoped–crumbly on the inside with a crispy fried shell– and the salad had a great zesty note, making it perfect for a fresh, summertime side. Along with a small side of house made hummus I found myself a satisfied customer from the start.
Falafel is a common street food (fast food) in the Middle East. People dispute its origins as Egyptian or Indian or Yemenis, regardless, it is a wonderful crunchy way to enjoy some plant based protein while skipping meat products. In fact, falafel is so common in the Middle East that McDonald’s once offered a McFalafel on its regional menu. You don’t have to wait for Micky D’s to get a tasty falafel and good fries though because My Pita has both. Their fries are perfectly seasoned and crisped. If you aren’t worried about calories, I say, go ahead and order a large, because they are that good!
The atmosphere is casual with multiple languages being spoken all at once. This diversity is a strength of southwest Houston, and a highlight for folks lucky enough to be living in the Brays Oaks Management District.
On my second trip to My Pita I ordered the shakshuka. Shakshuka is a dish I am always searching for when eating Middle Eastern cuisine. It holds a special place in my heart. This tomato and egg dish owes its unique spice profile to generous amounts of garlic, nutmeg and cumin. While it is an outstanding option for breakfast, accompanied by pita and coffee, it’s also hearty enough to be enjoyed at any meal. Some even claim it is an excellent hang-over food when you may have over indulged the night before.
I fell in love with this dish on my honeymoon in Turkey, hence why it has a special appeal for me. My Pita’s version is stellar, probably the best we have had since our trip to Istanbul so many years ago. If you are looking for Sunday brunch comfort food, the shakshuka at My Pita is an absolute must.
My Pita can get crowded for lunch and other high traffic times, but the staff is friendly and efficient, even during rush hours. Don’t live in the Brays Oaks Management District? Consider making the drive into to southwest Houston for the experience. It will be worth your time to enjoy one of Houston’s best casual Kosher dining establishments.
9806 Hillcroft St. Houston, TX 77096