New York City is full of smells, some great, others not so great. When you walk down 6th Avenue from 57th Street to 42nd Street you’ll really notice the spicy aroma of grilled meat, because you will be walking past many Halal street carts where men are furiously grilling chicken and lamb, or frying balls of falafel, or mixing fragrant sauces and fresh salads.
While the Halal Brothers on 53rd Street are perhaps the most famous, my favorite is the unassuming Kwik Meal cart located on the south-western corner of 6th Avenue and 45th Street. Owned by Bangladesh-born Mohammed Rahman, a former chef at the Russian Tea Room, hungry office workers and tourists in Midtown can enjoy tender chicken or lamb over rice or in a pita. You can also try the falafel, and on some days there is fresh fish. I usually stick to the lamb pita, and I like to ask for the special green sauce for a spicy kick. My children love to get hot dogs at Kwik Meal, because they are cooked in butter on the flat top, and the buns are buttered and grilled too!
The midtown street carts are always a good bet for tasty and inexpensive food, so don’t be afraid to try them. If there’s a line, then it is usually worth the wait. While I am partial to Kwik Meal, you should also try the Halal Brothers on 53rd Street and the Biryani Cart on 6th and 46th. The Halal Brothers can be mobbed, especially at night when cabbies and others line up for late suppers, but I’ve usually had good luck with the Biryani Cart. Their chicken biryani is wonderful and filling!