Cush (or Kush) was an ancient empire of Sudan and was chosen by the restaurants owners as the name of their restaurant which brings the flavours of both Sudan and the newly formed South Sudan to Brisbane.
Sudanese food has a number of influences, including indigenous African food as well as flavours from Arab and Turkish traders and settlers during the Ottoman Empire. Greater Sudan borders countries that include Libya, Ethiopia, Chad, Eritrea, Kenya, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Typical Sudanese dishes includes stews as well as fried dishes such as fish. Salads also common. Stews are best eaten with the traditional Sudanese flat bread called kessra. Cush also provides the option of ordering with bread rolls or rice instead.
Sudanese cuisine is normally eaten from shared bowls and plates, usually with your hand. Tear off a piece of kessra bread in your right hand and use it to pick up the dish. Remember to wash your hands before eating. Of course cutlery is available for anyone who feels uncomfortable using their hands, but it is always more interesting to eat food in the traditional manner.
To keep with the traditional feel, the restaurant has a wall made up to look like a Sudanese village kitchen and there are also traditional paintings on the walls.
Some dishes to try
Cush Sudanese restaurant serves many great Sudanese dishes some recommended by Joseph the owner include.
Sudanese style fried fish, served with bread and salad.
Sudanese Broad Bean Stew, which is made of mashed beans, boiled eggs, cheese and served with either salad or bread.
Molokhia, stew of mashed spinach with your choice of beef or lamb. It is best eaten with kessra bread, though like most stews Sudanese stews, it is also delicious with rice.
For those who want to try something more spicy, Zighni is a spicy Sudanese curry, made with your choice of beef or chicken. Normally eaten with kessra, I personally prefer to eat my curries with rice.
There are also mixed share platters available if you want to try several dishes and share them with your friends.
Finish off your meal with popular Sudanese desserts. Like many Northern African countries, Baklava is popular (as it is in Australia), but why not try Bassbossa or a plate of dates served in the traditional way with sugar and flour to give you the feeling of relaxing in a Sudanese desert oasis.
Don't forget to enjoy the some traditional Sudanese coffee, served in a Jebena pot. Northern African coffee is strong, but when made properly, never over powering or too bitter. Best tried black with no sugar (though many Sudanese will these days drink their coffee with sugar).
Finding the Cush restaurant is a little difficult. You will find it downstairs at the back of a small arcade off Beaudesert Road. As it is not the only restaurant in the arcade, make sure you go down the stairs.
Definitely worth the effort trying to find this lovely little restaurant owned by a friendly couple. A must visit for people who are interested in trying new cuisine.