Sequim’s very own Kabob House

Where: 173 W. Washington St., Sequim

Open: 10:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Saturday; closed on Sundays

Contact: 504-2598

Amalia Awawda never thought her Palestinian home cooking would reach outside the walls of her Sequim home.

The 37-year-old and mother of three is entering her second week of business at her newly opened restaurant the Sequim Kabob House at 173 W. Washington St. in downtown Sequim.

The restaurant officially opened on Monday, June 19, and serves Middle Eastern cuisine from 10:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Saturdays and is closed on Sundays.

When Awawda saw the space formerly known as Fudd’s Fish and Chips up for lease, Awawda said she wanted to take the opportunity to make a business out of her home cooking.

“I saw it for lease and went to my husband and said, ‘Why don’t we give it a try for our food,’” Awawda said. “And he thought it was crazy because I never did restaurants before and I came from my kitchen to a restaurant.”

Awawda and her husband Jim now co-own the restaurant and also manage a Liberty grocery store and Mobil gas station in Port Angeles and a smoke shop in Sequim.

She said the restaurant serves Middle Eastern food made from scratch.

“I want everybody to know what Middle Eastern food is,” Awawda said.

“It’s nice to tell (customers) where we are from.”

Awawda said she was born in Brazil and grew up in Palestine where she lived for 10 years.

She later moved with her parents to America where she lived in California for over 10 years — where her three sons were born — and then in Arizona for two years where the rest of her family currently live.

She has been living in Sequim with her family for six years now.

“We love it here, I love raising my kids here,” Awawda said.

Her three sons: Moe, 12, Adam, 14, and Yussef, 16, all attend schools in Sequim.

She said the food she serves in the restaurant is what she and many of her family and friends eat at home.

“It’s Middle Eastern because all the Middle East: Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine; we all eat almost the same thing.”

She said a lot of Middle Eastern food consists of lamb, beef, chicken, rice, hummus, salads and breads. The food she cooks is inspired by her home Palestinian cooking she learned from her mother and sister.

“I always cook and share with all my friends,” she said.

Her son Adam said he and his family always were telling Awawda she should open a restaurant.

“Every time she would cook we would always tell her, ‘Your food is so good you should open a restaurant!’” Adam said. “But we never thought it would actually get this far.”

The menu offers a variety of Middle Eastern dishes including shawarma — shredded and grilled chicken or beef with spices — lamb, chicken or beef kabobs with vegetables, salads and falafel.

She said many customers are curious about her dishes and she enjoys being able to tell them what each one is.

“People are trying everything,” Awawda said.

“A lot of people know but they ask what certain dishes are and I like telling them what it is.“

She said while she doesn’t have a signature dish yet many people ask her about the falafel — a dish she makes from scratch using ground chickpeas and parsley that she deep fries.

While falafel sparks many customers’ curiosity, she said her favorite dish to eat is the tabouli salad.

“I can live on tabouli and a kabob,” she said.

She describes tabouli salad as a refreshing dish she makes every day made of chopped parsley, tomatoes, onions, dry wheat soaked, and mixed with olive oil, lemon and salt.

“It’s my favorite thing,” she said.

She also makes the hummus she serves with plate entrees every day.

Since the restaurant doors have been open, Awawda said she has been busy with peak lunch and dinner times from 12-2:30 p.m. and 5-7 p.m.

The prices range from $6.50 for items such as the falafel to $19.75 for the Kabob House Supreme, a dish with a combination of grilled lamb, beef and chicken kabob with rice, hummus and salad.

Awawda said she hopes to hire someone to help her cook and serve food and may add more tables for more seating.

She said for now she wants to focus on perfecting the restaurant.

“I want to focus on one thing and make it perfect,” Awawda said.

She said the business might grow to other locations on the peninsula such as Port Angeles but she wants to stay hands-on in the restaurant.

“I want to cook it, I want to season it,” she said.

She said most importantly she wants the restaurant to feel like home.

“I want it to feel like a family restaurant,” Awawda said.

Amalia Awawda prepares a variety of kabobs on the grill at the newly opened Sequim Kabob House. She and her family have lived in Sequim for six years and serve dishes inspired by her home Palestinian cooking. Sequim Gazette photo by Erin Hawkins

The Sequim Kabob House serves Middle Eastern cuisine inspired by co-owner Amalia Awawda’s home cooking. All the dishes are made from scratch and come straight from Awawda’s family recipes. Sequim Gazette photo by Erin Hawkins

More in Business

WeDo Fudge announces 2018 charitable sales donations

As part of their annual drive to give back to the community,… Continue reading

Washington jobs report delivers promising start to new year

Washington’s economy added 6,800 jobs in January and the state’s seasonally adjusted… Continue reading

Clallam County Job Fair set for March 21

The Clallam County Annual Job Fair will be held from 10 a.m.-2… Continue reading

Gateway Mortgage celebrates grand opening in Sequim

Sequim community members and business owners celebrated the grand opening of Gateway… Continue reading

Two take leadership roles at cancer center

Ken Berkes, Interim Olympic Medical Cancer Center Director, announced last week the… Continue reading

Business briefs — March 7, 2018

Sequim’s The Emerald restaurant closes Danielle Thompson, owner of The Emerald, Northwest… Continue reading

Business briefs — Feb. 28, 2018

Sequim’s 1st Security Bank adds staffers 1st Security Bank, announced last week… Continue reading

Two families going with their gut

What started as a hobby for AJ Wooten making hot sauce recipes… Continue reading

Community, family, and frozen yogurt

Family-owned frozen yogurt shop 609 West Washington, Suite 11, Sequim Tentative opening:… Continue reading

New owners find best fit with Best Friend Nutrition

Best Friend Nutrition New owners Cynthia and Casey Linden 680 W. Washington… Continue reading

House approves bill for vocational scholarships at rural community colleges

A proposed program that would provide grants for community college students to… Continue reading

Sequim Merchant Group sets first 2018 meeting for Feb. 21

The first Sequim Merchant Group meeting of 2018 is set for 5:30-7… Continue reading