ingredients magazine
shahrazad market
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shahrazad market

Shahrazad Market and Restaurant, west of downtown Salt Lake City at 1615 W. 2100 S., was opened to supply the everyday grocery needs of the growing Middle Eastern population as well as offer a restaurant experience that would remind them of their varied homelands.  Owners Mike Mashaad and Sal El Ibrahimi have found a simple need in the area and addressed it directly.  "They discussed the expanding Middle Eastern population in Utah and knew there was a need to provide familiar food," said Sarah Soeldan, who manages the day-to-day operations of the market and restaurant, says of the decision to open the business.

It is notable that this decision came courtesy Mashaad, who is not a Utah resident.  The Louisiana native was visiting Ibrahimi on vacation when the two remarked on how underserved the local Middle Eastern population was.  Soon thereafter they decided to address the issue personally, opening the market and restaurant in the middle of 2009.

In the location of the former Somali market Desi, Shahrazad represents one of only a handful of local sources for halal meat.  Similar to Jewish kosher laws, Muslim dietary rules dictate that meat be slaughtered in a prescribed, humane manner.  Products sold by Shahrazad's meat counter either come to the market with halal certification from the producer or are butchered with oversight from the market's own halal certified butcher.  All of the meat sold in the market is also certified organic, notes Soeldan.

Grocery items in the market come from a wide variety of Middle Eastern countries.  Not only does the market carry regular grocery items but also has a sizeable selection of refrigerated prepared food.
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