African flavors spice up familiar comfort food at this Atlanta restaurant

Jollof rice and plantain is served with chicken stew at Little Lagos. Henri Hollis/henri.hollis@ajc.com
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Jollof rice and plantain is served with chicken stew at Little Lagos. Henri Hollis/henri.hollis@ajc.com

Credit: Henri Hollis

Dish of the Week: Jollof rice from Little Lagos

Many of the descriptions of dishes at Nigerian restaurant Little Lagos ominously read, “Cannot be made less spicy.”

Folks who enjoy spicy food should not let that scare them off, though. The spices are used judiciously, enhancing the warm, comforting West African flavors. An excellent example is the jolloff rice and plantain with chicken stew. It’s like the dirty rice of your dreams, with a lovely depth of flavor that comes from it cooking in a tomato and pepper sauce.

Chicken drumsticks, braised to fork-tenderness, are served in a similar piquant sauce, and the starchy plantains round out a hearty meal.

Still, the rice is the star, with enough heat to ignite the sweet, tart flavors of the tomato and spice mixture. You won’t want to stop eating, but the massive portion ensures you’ll be satisfied.

Little Lagos. 3979 Buford Highway NE, Atlanta. 404-835-2465.

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