BOSTON (June 2009).- First time restaurateur Marie-Claude Mendy has opened Boston’s first Senegalese restaurant, Teranga, on Washington Street in the South End. A native Senegalese who has also lived in Paris, London and Washington, DC, Marie-Claude is excited to introduce Boston to her native cuisine.
«Due to our unique history Senegalese cuisine incorporates culinary traditions from around the globe,» says Marie-Claude. «You can see both French and Vietnamese influences in our food, which come together to create a clean, distinctive cuisine that is sure to please any palate.»
Teranga’s authentic Senegalese menu is comprised of dishes that best demonstrate the cuisine’s distinct blend of culinary influences. Lunch and dinner menus boast dishes with rich, authentic flavors that are anything but ordinary.
The appetizer selection includes Nems, similar to Vietnamese spring rolls, that are available with chicken and beef or vegetarian as well as Accara, fried seasoned black eye pea batter. Teranga’s menu, which features the Salade Ordinaire, comprised of mache mixed with potatoes, beets and boiled eggs tossed with coconut-lime dressing, is comprised of dishes that combine traditional ingredients and flavors that will satisfy adventurous palates.
The lunch entrée menu offers a selection of tasty stews served with rice and vegetables, as well as fish such as the Yassa Djeun, marinated, grilled Tilapia cooked in a lemon and caramelized onion sauce. For dinner, the Brochettes, grilled skewered cubes of tender, tangy beef served with yucca fries and onion and mustard-spiced sauce, and Michoui, marinated roasted lamb shank stuffed with herbs and served with a caramelized onion reduction and Moroccan couscous, are featured, as well as Thiebou Djeun, the national dish of Senegal: a savory dish of white fish stuffed with herbs cooked with vegetables in a tomato broth, served with broken jasmine rice.
WINE & DRINKS
Wines by the glass and the bottle, as well as imported and domestic beers are offered on this evolving menu, which will soon feature specialty beers from Africa. One of the restaurant’s specialties is Marie-Claude’s selection of authentic, housemade mixed fruit juices, such as the Bissap juice, which is sorrell or hibiscus juice, pineapple juice, orange flower water and vanilla sugar all mixed into a refreshing drink that complements the regions cuisine.
Marie-Claude has created an inviting space with a warm, relaxing atmosphere that embodies the meaning of the word ‘Teranga’, the Wolof word for hospitality. Marie-Claude has a strong passion for art and has decorated the space with her own art collection.
«When working on this project, I wanted to create a place that was chic and welcoming», says Marie-Claude » I used Zebrawood with its golden dark tones to create my own interpretation of an African vibe.»
Marie-Claude Mendy was born and raised in Dakar, Senegal and attributes her initial interest in cooking to her mother, a Senegalese native who is a catering chef. In fact, Marie-Claude’s mother, who resides in Senegal, is also a part of Teranga in her own way, sending over the spices and other touches that make this restaurant truly unique.
The decision to open up her own restaurant was natural for Marie-Claude, who has a true passion for entertaining and food. Marie-Claude was drawn to Boston’s South End with its unique diversity and the neighborhoods’ love affair with restau