It came to my attention this morning that Abu Ghosh, my favorite ka3ek baker in town, has passed away. With his passing, the delicious whiff of freshly baked bread will no longer come from the one-man bakery on the corner of Rainbow street.
My story with Abu Ghosh starts almost 10 years ago, before Rainbow Street had its renaissance. His kaek was one of my two post-bowling choices, the first being Falafel Al-Quds, right across from Abu Al-Dahab Bowling Center.
As a car was added to my repertoire of belongings, my visits to the kaek man increased. I can’t tell you how much I enjoy stopping by Coffee and News for Italian soda, while reading a book and eating one of his ka3kehs.
What set Abu Ghosh apart from all the other bakers in town was his endearingly foul mood. He always reminded me of Seinfeld’s soup Nazi. A “good afternoon” was welcomed by a gruff “ummmrrr”, and he would start yelling if I got my camera out. The opening hours of his bakery depended on his whims and fancies, and he sometimes would refuse to bake because he was having a cigarette break, or because he was out of dough.
I find it suitable to end my ode to Abu Ghosh with a paragraph from the “Amman City Guide” I wrote for Gulf Life:
“On the corner of the first portion of Rainbow Street lies a bakery that simply cannot be missed, thanks to the mouthwatering aroma of warm bread. Abu Gosh runs his “ka’ek” business from the early morning, tirelessly feeding dough to his furnace, which magically transforms the dough into thick, baguette-like “ka’ek”. Across the furnace rests a battered wooden table that provides you with do-it-yourself “ka’ek”-filling ingredients: a plastic bag of thyme and a half-finished box of La Vache Qui Rit’s cream cheese triangles. Unassuming, but believe me, breakfast cannot possibly be better.”
So long, Abu Ghosh. I will miss you, indeed.
You will always be Amman’s best ka3ek baker.