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So very close, a world away



While on our never-ending journey to find exotic foodstuffs, an old place with new management appeared on the horizon and welcomed us in. The Salam Inter-national Market (3090 E. Aloma Ave., 407-657-5560) has been tucked away in Winter Park since 1988, with Persian, Middle Eastern, Greek and Indian delights on the shelves and in the kitchen.

Jars of grape leaves, pistachio candies and halvah are just an aisle over from candied baby eggplant, fresh almonds still in their green fuzzy fruit, sinfully strong Turkish coffee, plus frozen goat, duck and beef. Not to mention the best -- and freshest -- pita breads in town, straight from two local bakeries.

The new folks running the show brought recipes with them from New York for the cafe: everything from killer tabouli and kibbe to marinated and grilled little quail called assafeer. It's very close, yet a world away.