Cuisine Made With Local Products at Chef's American Bistro

Everyone in Southern Maryland seems to be jumping on the “Buy Local” bandwagon. Chef Ahmed Koroma has been a “Buy Local” advocate all his life.  The chef grew up in Sierra Leone, West Africa and recalled how he would go with his mother “to the markets to buy fresh meats and produce.”

In 2007, Chef Ahmed, who has mastered various international cuisines at restaurants in France and the United States, opened Chef’s American Bistro in the San Souci Plaza in California. He calls the eatery’s blend of Italian, French Asian and Southern Creole cuisines made with local products—vegetables, fruits, herbs, eggs, meat, poultry and seafood—“New Local Kalifornian Cuisine.”

Chef Ahmed opened the restaurant, which he explained is modeled after similar bistros in urban locales like New York and Washington, DC, because the Southern Maryland market has a craving for something a bit more provincial.  In a sea of fast food and franchises, Chef Ahmed and his staff of 13 have carved an intriguing niche in the market.

“We like to know our guests,” he said. “They become family members and they get discounts.”

Chef Ahmed pointed that Chef’s American Bistro’s weekly menu always includes information about the local farms and markets where the ingredients were grown.

The Kalifornian servings are quintessential comfort food. On assignment for The BayNet, this writer savored a generous serving of Local Herbs and Dijon-Crusted Atlantic Salmon which shared a large plate with helpings of sautéd spinach augmented with diced tomato and shallots, and rice pilaf. The American classic macaroni and cheese is served as an appetizer with one special addition you won’t find in that box of discount macaroni and cheese powder you bought at the supermarket. This mac and cheese…made with real mixed with jumbo lump crab. If you have room for dessert, live a little—try the double-layered chocolate truffle cake served with chocolate ganache.

There are plenty of other palate pleasers for lunch and dinner, including “Classic Wraps” served with local organic mix salad, local fresh fruit salad and chips.

Chef’s American Bistro won’t keep you waiting, either. In fact, from Tuesday through Friday the “Express Lunch” is available from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and is ready in 15 minutes or less.

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