If you’re new to Liberian cuisine, MaMa Ti’s African Kitchen in Brooklyn Park is a great place to start. The restaurant lets diners choose the sizing on many of its dishes, so you can request six fried peppered wings instead of 12, or three pieces of oxtail as opposed to five. This is helpful for first-timers who wanna try a little of this, a little of that.
A heaping serving of spicy jollof rice gets any party started. Ditto the whole fried fish and attiéké (fermented cassava with a texture similar to couscous). Order the restorative pepper soup-and-fufu combo, made with plantain flour; plus fried plantains and small portions of stewed cassava leaves, potato greens fried in palm oil, and kitily torborgee (bitter balls, a.k.a. Kermit eggplants, paired with unctuous bits of chicken, beef, and smoked turkey). A bottle of house-made ginger beer spiked with pineapple and lemon juice washes it all down — and reportedly staves off any indigestion brought on by that blazing hot pepper sauce. (Tell y’all what, that stuff is pure, delicious hellfire!)
The flavors at MaMa Ti’s are unapologetically bold and, depending on your experience with West African cuisine, like nothing you may have tasted before. “It’s very exciting to see the expression on people’s faces,” MaMa Ti’s owner Jerome Butler once told The Minnesota Skinny when asked about first-time customers. “They don’t know what to expect, but once they taste it… that’s what keeps us going.”
MaMa Ti’s is operating as takeout-only right now; BYO picnic blanket and enjoy your spread at nearby Palmer Lake Park, the largest natural environmental preserve in Brooklyn Center. We can’t wait to sample more MaMa dishes and hit up other Liberian restaurants in the metro area, including Milah’s Royal Bistro and City Afrique in North Minneapolis.
MaMa Ti’s African Kitchen
7632 Brooklyn Blvd., Brooklyn Park, MN; 763-566-1009.