[Photograph: Josh Conley]

Spicy is tricky. Too many restaurants for my taste interpret it to mean that this dish contains many spices, ergo, it is spicy. Read: we don't want to hurt anyone's feelings. Then there's the tears-streaming-down-cheeks spicy hot that kicks your taste buds around and takes their lunch money. The chicken tikka kabob sandwich ($6.99 combo/$5.49 sandwich only) at Salam finds the right balance of assertive heat with good, spicy flavor.

Make no mistake, this sandwich is hot, thanks to being marinated in their "special hot tikka blend." But the juicy chunks of chicken breast are further bolstered with the unmistakable char of fast and high heat. Fresh tomatoes weigh in with some nice zing, while sliced white onions give the sandwich a nice overall crunch. Top it all off with a creamy tahini sauce and stuff it in a pita from just down the street and you've got a spicy, unique chicken delight.


4636 North Kedzie Avenue, Chicago, IL 60625 (map)


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