The Parapolis Project: Sustainability on Wheels

Parapolis Prototype
If you’ve been following the story of Abracadabra from the beginning, you know that our dream has always been to serve up meals, culture, and fun from a food truck. We love the idea of appearing all over Dakar and creating excitement, connection, and community around our moving restaurant.

That dream is alive and well. For the Parapolis Project, a group of architecture students from the University of Applied Sciences in Münster, Germany, is working together with students from the Institute Polytechnique Panafricain (IPP), Dakar, to develop a design concept.

We concluded the first phase of the project in the spring , when a group of German students visited Senegal to research mobile market structures in Dakar and conduct a workshop with the IPP students — followed by a study trip through Senegal. Students worked up initial designs for an earth-friendly truck. In the next phase, we are looking for funding to continue and implement the plans — and actually build the truck!

Find out more about the ongoing project on our website and make sure to follow #parapolisprototype on social media.

 

 

Stay Cool with Sno Cones!

Abracadabra is back from summer vacation, and we’ve brought a cool surprise back with us: sno cones, the refreshing treat from the American South, otherwise known as Hawaiian Shaved Ice, Kakigōri, and granité glacé.

Sno Cones at ISD

With a beautiful, imported manual cast-iron machine, we’re now shaving ice made from 100% mineral water and flavoring it with delicious local syrups, including bouye, ditakh, pineapple, and of course everyone’s favorite, bissap. It’s the perfect treat for the rainy-season mugginess.

“You’re selling ice in the desert!”

img_20160831_123801-1500Stundents and parents of the International School Dakar are already well acquainted with the delights of Abracadabra sno cones, and you can find us outside their gates several times a week, as well as in other selected locations throughout the city. We’re still exploring new locations and working out a long-term schedule, so let us know where you’d like to see us pop up — and make sure to check Twitter, Instagram or Facebook page for our whereabouts.

We’re also available to shave fresh sno cones at your kid’s birthday party or event, and we’re working on new flavors. These include alcoholic flavors for adult-only events. (May make your office party more interesting than usual!) Mark your calendar: we’ll be preparing deluxe gourmet sno cones at the DKFRM farmer’s market (formerly Lou Bess) on October 1. Coffee lovers, get ready!

 

 

Cooking All Over Town!

We’ve been on a roll, catering and hosting events all over Dakar and teaming up with wonderful new local partners  — and we thought the least we can do is share some photos!

Meet your friendly bartender! Kids are baking cookies at Melo Patisserie Kap is serving the kids' tasting menu at Maam Samba
Where you there? We had a special after-work all-ages tasting event, featuring delicious new vegetarian creations for kids and adults, at Espace Maam Samba, the fair trade store and auberge in Ngor. Even when we’re not there serving nyebi party salad, coconut cucumber soup, chocolate pudding with peanut and mbourake base, and mini bouye muffins, you should check out their beautiful assortment of clothes, textiles, furnitures, and gifts.

The tasting plate at Maam Samba Ndem lights up the screen at the Reel Repas Deluxe at Maam Samba
For our Reel Repas Deluxe, we returned to Maam Samba, combining 007 with a 3-course meal! Together with our friends from Smokestack, we teamed up to satisfy meat lovers and vegetarians alike: reclining in Maam Samba’s bamboo furniture, guests dug on the smoked chicken carnitas from Smokestack along with Abracadabra’s mango curry, appetizers, desserts, and cocktails while they enjoyed the latest installment of James Bond. Our next Reel Repas is planned for June 3 — watch this space for details!

Brunch is served — at Melo Patisserie

Melo Patisserie just opened in Ngor, offering an amazing variety of authentic European breads, German rolls, and even New York style cronuts! Proprietress Anna Gueyre invited us to host a Magic Brunch in her beautiful space, and we were thrilled to serve Abracadabra’s savory food along with Melo’s sumptuous breakfast spread. Kids made cookies and falafel burgers while their parents enjoyed Melo’s European ambiente and live guitar music for a perfect Sunday morning brunch.

Make sure to check out Melo and Maam Samba when you’re in Ngor — or make them a reason to stop by the neighborhood! We’ll announce new collaborations and events soon, so sign up for our newsletter, follow us on Twitter, or like our Facebook page.

Hope to see & serve you soon!

Thank you, ISD!

Thank you, International School of Dakar for being such a fun crowd to serve! We debuted several new dishes at last week’s annual general meeting, and the chocolate pudding and the falafel were the first to go! Contact us if you’d like to book Abracadabra to cater your event.

 

Keep on Truckin’

25512638690_f79210c841_oWhat a miraculous two months it’s been since we’ve launched Abracadabra.

We were hoping to raise enough money to purchase a food truck to bring inventive, locally sourced vegetarian food to Dakar — but instead, something quite different happened.

From the beginning, when we unveiled our web presence and promo video, met with friends and partners like Begue Coco, Sahad and the Nataal Patchwork, and Chef Pierre Thiam, and introduced ourselves to Dakaroises hungry for sustainable, delicious alternatives — we quickly realized we had something special on our hands.

Right away, everyone wanted to taste our food. With so much enthusiasm for our concept, we began hosting tasting events, and from our debut dinner at Shala Yoga on, there was a real buzz: people clamored for more Abracadabra.

In a whirlwind, we started cooking up more magic food. With the help of recipe fairy Mina Fuhr, unstoppable intern Annabelle Guptill, and our German-Senegalese team of Marie Ly, Meike Templin and Elgin Hertel, we hosted special receptions in Dakar-Plateau, a pop-up restaurant in Ngor, and catered an exclusive dinner for diplomats and NGO workers (where we were offered 20 kg of grapefruit on the spot!) We brought our Teranga Mango curry, Dakharu Maki, Corossol Pudding and Kinkelibucha to Lou Bess Farmers’ Market and sold out in just two hours.

Last Friday, we hosted our first Reel Repas, an event that combined adventurous appetizers, delicious desserts, and a specially-themed cocktail with a carefully curated movie, and was received with rave reviews.

Now that the fundraiser is over and the dust has settled, one thing has become clear: even if the time wasn’t right to buy our food truck, Dakar wants Abracadabra. There’s a real demand for inventive vegetarian meals that combine local ingredients with international recipes — and that’s why Abracadabra’s journey is far from over.

So, we’d like to thank all of you for your invaluable support and thoughtful feedback. We’re humbled by your encouragement and trust, and we’re going to keep on cookin’.

The next chapter will be even more amazing. You can now summon us to cater your special event (watch this site for the menu) and we’ll also keep appearing —  poof! —  around town wherever you least suspect us. We already have more movie, music, and dinner events in the works, and we’re working hard on expanding our menu, teaming up with new partners and building a sustainable infrastructure to keep Abracadabra growing — with food that’s sourced responsibly, prepared inventively, and served with love.

If you haven’t yet, make sure to follow us on Facebook and sign up for our newsletter to get early notice of special events and surprise appearances around Dakar. We’re also on Twitter and Instagram, if that’s your thing. And tell your friends!

Thanks again, everyone — and stay tuned: we have a lot more magic in store!