The Cafe: While riding light rail, a sign I see frequently is "Halal," usually followed by some descriptor like "African Meats." Frustrated by my own ignorance, I found myself under the bright, welcoming sign at Moga's Market (6727-B MLK Jr. Way S., 723-3588).
Inside were shelves of culinary basics: flour, sugar, and the like. Racks of clothing filled an adjacent room. Hanging from the racks were the burqas and hijab headdresses worn by the women chatting at the counter. There were also stands filled with long beautiful skirts that made me wish I were six inches taller. But there was no sign of these halal meats, so finally I asked.
"Halal is from God," one of the women at the counter explained. "At Safeway, that meat isn't Halal. Like Allah."
With the language barrier making details a little difficult, I did some Wikipedia sleuthing back home. Based on the Internet encyclopedia and my conversation at Moga's, it appears Halal is a designation similar to kosher. Halal meat is slaughtered in a ritual method known as dhabiha.
"And you sell Halal meat here?" I asked the woman, glancing around the store.
"It's in the back, we cut it," she replied. "Do you want beef? Goat? Chicken?"
I ordered a pound of halal steak and another woman headed for the back. 15 minutes later she returned with a gorgeous red chunk of beef that looked well over a pound. "$3.99," she said.
Courtesy by: Seattle Weakly