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Food & Drink

What’s on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread

By Caroline Aksich| Photography by Caroline Aksich
What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread

Name: Somun Superstar Contact: 998 Kingston Rd., 416-546-2018, somunsuperstar.com, @somunsuperstar
Neighbourhood: Upper Beaches Previously: Freshii Chef-owners: Alen Zukanović and Sanja Topić Zukanović Accessibility: Fully accessible

The food

Since moving to Toronto, Bosnian expats Alen and Sanja weren’t hurting for homeland food—the city has a number of Balkan spots where you can nab a burek or an order of ćevapčići (caseless Balkan sausages). There was, however, one thing they pined for: somun. These wood-fired breads are a Bosnian staple. What bagels are to Montreal, somun is to Sarajevo.

In order to curb their craving, Alen and Sanja paid an uptown restaurant to use their pizza oven after-hours, rolling in at 2 a.m. with their immense bags of flour. At first, the somuni were strictly for them and they just gave the extras away, but when they realized Torontonians were digging the flatbread, they started selling it at a shop near their Upper Beaches home. For a while it was just a side gig, but late last fall they took the plunge and dedicated themselves to somun full-time.

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Some fresh somun.

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
These one are almost done.

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Poof.

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
This is the classic sandwich made with ćevapčići, onions and kajmak (an airy Balkan spread that’s like a blend of clotted cream and cream cheese). The ćevapčići, a mix of lamb and beef, are made at Etobicoke’s Mrakovic Meat & Deli. “We got into this for the somun, I’ll leave the meat to the butchers,” says Alen. $10.

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Most Bosnians think this loaded ćevapčići sandwich is sacrilegious, but it’s one of the top-sellers at the shop. The sandwich is topped with ajvar (a red pepper spread), kajmak, onions, pickles and hot peppers. $13.

 

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What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Here’s a closer look.

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
“We didn’t want our vegetarian sandwich to be a token sandwich,” says Alen about the Vegetariančići, which stuffs a fresh somun with grilled eggplant, onions, ajvar, hot peppers and avocado. $12.
What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Bosnians don’t usually eat their ćevapčići in sandwich form. Back home, they’re usually served on a platter with onions, kajmak, and somun on the side, and a glass of plain drinking yogurt. $16. ($2.50 for the house-made yogurt drink.)

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
This pekmez is a snack of somun with kajmak and plum jam. Alen and Sanja make the plum jam in-house with Italian plums. $4.25.

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
The menu.

 

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Chef-owners Alen and Sanja.

 

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What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Alen shows off some of his somun-inspired ink.

 

The drinks

When Alen and Sanja decided they were going to open a take-out joint, they knew they wanted to minimize their waste output. They’re only selling Ontarieau’s unsweetened carbonated water in flavours like grapefruit-mint and wild strawberry—because the company takes the bottles back, washes and reuses them. All of Somun Superstar’s to-go boxes, cups and cutlery are also compostable. Because Toronto’s compost program can’t deal with biodegradable plastics, the Zukanovićs partnered with Rethink Resource to send their green waste to a Belleville facility that can compost it. Right now, they’re diverting about 87 per cent of their waste from the landfill, and they’re keen to improve that figure.

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
Ontarieau comes in grapefruit-mint, wild strawberry and lemon-ginger flavours.

 

The space

The most expensive aspect of this bright, eight-seat room was the wood oven. It cooks the somuni at 700°F and is highly efficient—even though the fire is always burning, the Zukanovićs only go through about three cubic feet of hardwood a day.

What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread
What's on the menu at Somun Superstar, a new place on Kingston Road for Bosnian sandwiches on house-made bread

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