Palestinian restaurant masters tastes of home, and Texas

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HOUSTON, TX - Mediterranean can mean a whole world of flavors, but at Al Aseel, it's all about the traditional dishes of Palestine.

“[The restaurant's name means] 'the original', so, we serve the original food of Palestine,” explains Al Aseel owner, Ali Khativ.

Khativ has found his cuisine appeals to a wide range of customers, but those from the Middle East seem to appreciate it the most. Al Aseel gets especially busy during the month of Ramadan, when many of Khativ's Muslim customers finish a long day of fasting with his home-cooked buffet of favorites, but when it comes to his Palestinian patrons, there's one dish that always hits the spot, the Musakhan chicken. Khativ says customers come from all over Texas to try the authentic Palestinian dish.

"Well they come from all over, Victoria, Spring, we even had a customer come all the way from Austin to try it,” said Khativ.

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The Musakhan chicken isn't the only chicken at Al Aseel that draws a crowd, they're also known for making a mean fried chicken, with a Palestinian twist.

However, the Musakhan chicken isn't the only chicken at Al Aseel that draws a crowd, they're also known for making a mean fried chicken, with a Palestinian twist.

“It's not a traditional Palestinian dish, but we spice it with Palestinian spices, the thyme, the garlic,” described Khativ. “That's what makes us famous, we've been in so many different magazines, writing about this chicken, a lot of people like it.”

Whatever you order, whether traditional Palestinian fare or Texas-inspired, the flavorful food at Al Aseel will have you coming back for more. So mix it up, Mediterranean style, and treat yourself to the original, Al Aseel.