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Ranking 5 Halal Food Spots Around Campus

Sajad Syed
Holy Cow Burgers in Selden, which opened its doors in Oct. 2023, offers American classics with a halal twist.

With so many new halal spots opening up, which ones will give you the most bang for your buck? 

As the Muslim population in the Selden and Centereach areas continues to grow, more and more halal restaurants are opening up to accommodate the growth. Middle Country Road, the highway that runs through the both of these hamlets, has become a hot spot for halal options, with many new options popping up and serving the greater town population. 

With so many options available now, which ones are worth the money? Which place has the tastiest food? We reviewed a few of the restaurants on Middle Country Road to see how they compare to one another. 

5. Almasry Halal

1310 Middle Country Road, Suite 14
Selden, NY 11784
Taste: 6/10
Price: 8/10
Overall: 6.5/10

At first glance the place was unassuming, dark, quiet, which was in all likelihood due to the time we went to the deli. The deli is also a grocery store, offering different types of foreign goods and items. The deli occupies one small part of the grocery, but it is all run and operated by one person. The deli options were classic, with cold cuts like chicken and turkey, all the vegetable and sauce add-ons, on your choice of a hero, roll, or pita bread. 

Though the food was nothing special, the cold cuts were satisfactory, and the bread options, even the non-traditional pita bread, all tasted good and worked well with the meat and add-ons. We ordered a wrap / sandwich and one drink each with both came out to around $10 each which adds a great bang for your buck based on the amount of food you get. Any day of the week, Almasry is middle of the line and satisfactory. You can consider Almasry to be the safe and cheap choice. FYI: when you go, make sure to try the Arab pomegranate soda.   

4. Halal Hut

1327 Middle Country Road, Suite B
Centereach, NY 11720
Taste: 8/10
Price: 7.5/10
Overall: 8/10

Halal Hut offers many familiar options in the form of rice platters and gyros, while including their own takes on sandwiches like the BLT, Philly cheesesteak and different chicken sandwiches. What sets Halal Hut aside from every other restaurant is its over-fries option. This platter includes what you would expect in a traditional rice platter, except all over hot seasoned fries. 

The food was very good, and the price was great for the quality of the food. The over-fries were unlike anything We’ve tried before, with the fries combining with the chicken, vegetables and hot sauce to create one of the best meals we’ve tried over the course of this review. Their chicken sandwich is also very good, especially at the price. Halal Hut is a tasty option that you can come back to anytime, without fear of hurting your wallet. 

3. Holy Cow Burgers 

1245 Middle Country Road
Selden, NY 11784
Taste: 9.5/10
Price: 6/10
Overall: 8.5/10

With a modern and polished look, Holy Cow Burgers does not fit the stereotypical expectation of a halal food spot, swapping go-tos of lamb and rice for burgers, chicken sandwiches and hot dogs. The place feels like a modern twist on your average burger spot.

When it comes to the food quality, however, it’s anything but fast food. The sliders and their chicken tenders with spicy seasoning were spectacular, and when paired with their signature Holy Sauce, takes Holy Cow to the top of the flavor rankings. The food was hot and juicy, with flavor in every bite. The milkshakes were small, but rich in flavor and were more than enough to satisfy. 

Holy Cow’s biggest downside is the pricing. The main menu only has two options that are below $10.  While we would consider the food to be worth the price, Holy Cow is more of a once-in-a-while treat as opposed to a go-to option.

2. Zaiqa Halal Food 

795 Middle Country Road
Selden, NY 11784
Taste: 8.5/10
Price: 9/10
Overall: 9/10

Zaiqa, despite its quaint appearance from the outside, offered a rich menu with the regular go-to halal options in rice platters and sandwiches, along with special sides like wings, nuggets and tenders, and jumbo shrimp. Zaiqa’s interior has a fast food layout with a few tables and chairs. Add in a community driven mural on the main wall and you get a cozy, welcoming feeling. 

Out of all the halal places on Middle Country Road, Zaiqa has a comparatively top-tier chicken or lamb over rice platter, with the meat tasting fresh and seasoned with the vegetables and sauces adding extra flavor on top. 

The sandwiches, especially the Philly options, match up with any other halal restaurant’s sandwich. The wings were a pleasant surprise, sauced well and done more like a plate from Buffalo Wild Wings. Much different than you would expect from a halal restaurant specializing in rice platters. 

The prices were incredibly reasonable, with everything on the menu costing less than $10. Zaiqa certainly offers the best bang for your buck, and is a place you could visit multiple times in a week without any regret.

1. Curry Leaf

1245 Middle Country Road
Selden, NY 11784
Taste: 9/10
Price: 8.5/10
Overall: 9/10

When one thinks “halal food,” their mind may not immediately think “sit down, South Asian/Indian style restaurant.” But Curry Leaf is exactly what that is. The interior is clean and very welcoming. It’s very distinctly South Asian, with a screen playing Bollywood music, pillows in the booth seats and Turkish lamps hanging around the place. 

The menu offered all sorts of South Asian dishes, including Pakistani, Indian and Bangladeshi appetizers, entrees, and desserts. The entrees include spice options, for those who want to add a little kick to their meals. 

The food was flavorful and everything came together delivering a perfect mix of Indian Spices. Chicken samosas are a must-try appetizer, with the combo of chicken and vegetables in the fried pastry being hot and flavorful. When it comes to entrees, you have your pick of South Asian delicacies. We tried the chicken tikka masala, a classic and well-known dish, and their karahi chicken at medium spice levels. We ate our meals with plain naan, a popular South Asian type of flatbread, and garlic naan. The dishes were amazing, and they give you a heaping portion that fills you up in no time. 

The pricing is standard for a normal sit-down desi restaurant, if not a little better, with all entrees starting at $19. Expect extras such as their Garlic Naan at $5.  While not an everyday option, Curry Leaf is definitely worth the visit whenever you have the time and money to spend.

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About the Contributors
Sajad Syed
Sajad Syed, Editor-in-Chief
Sajad Syed is a journalism major and the editor-in-chief of the Suffolk student newspaper, the Compass News. An aspiring sports reporter, he will graduate from Suffolk in 2024 to pursue a bachelor’s degree in journalism
Fran Tini
Fran Tini, Opinions Editor
Fran Tini is a 21-year-old journalism major from Lindenhurst who is passionate about social issues and making sure students' voices are heard.

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