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The Perfect Order at Kasama

The two Oriole alums behind one of this year’s hottest openings bring a lot to the table — including what may be the best breakfast plate in town.

Photos: Jeff Marini

When chefs Tim Flores and Genie Kwon (pictured above) opened Kasama in July, they created a new concept: a hybrid Filipino restaurant and French bakery that’s open all day. Flores puts his own spin on savory Filipino classics like adobo, while Kwon makes pastries, such as a cardamom kouign-amann, that wouldn’t be out of place at a Paris patisserie. For dinner, Flores offers hearty weekend specials like lechón with chicken liver salsa, but it’s his Filipino breakfast combo — a loaded and brilliantly cheffed-up version of a traditional fried rice dish — that’s become Kasama’s must-order. The restaurant’s name means “together” in Tagalog, and that’s the spirit to adopt when you go: Order as many savory dishes and pastries as you can eat, then get more baked goods to take home. See our perfect order below. 1001 N. Winchester Ave., East Ukrainian Village

Chocolate Croissant, Ham and Cheese Danish, Mushroom Adobo, Ube Basque Cake, and Filipino Breakfast Combo

1. Chocolate Croissant

$6

Most versions of this are filled with firm chocolate, but Kwon uses ganache, so you get an explosion of creamy richness. Add a cardamom kouign-amann (far left, $5.50) and a fresh fruit tart (above right, $7.50).

2. Ham and Cheese Danish

$7

“This is what I always wished a ham and cheese croissant could be,” Kwon says. “We make it to order.” She pipes melted raclette cheese onto the Danish, places freshly sliced Serrano ham on top, then finishes it all with a drizzle of black-pepper-infused caramel. “You get a little bit of everything in every bite,” Flores says. For a sweet counterpoint, try a cinnamon bun (above, $5.50).

3. Mushroom Adobo

$14.50

“You can adobo anything — seafood, pork, chicken, vegetables — but mushrooms aren’t typical in the Philippines,” Flores says. Try one forkful of these mushrooms, which are marinated in vinegar and soy sauce and served over garlic rice, and it’s clear that giving them the adobo treatment makes perfect sense: They’re earthy, sweet, and sour.

4. Ube Basque Cake

$6

Kwon gives the French cake — normally filled with pastry cream — a Filipino twist by using ube (a purple yam) and huckleberry jam and by decorating it with a powdered sugar sun from the Filipino flag. Pair it with a berry crème fraîche cheesecake (bottom, $7.50).

5. Filipino Breakfast Combo

$15.50

Flores spent years rejiggering his gently sweet longaniza sausage and created a leaner version of tocino (cured barbecued pork). Those meats feature prominently in this dish, which includes garlicky fried rice, a fried egg, and atchara (pickled papaya, carrots, and ginger). The cilantro, mint, and scallions aren’t traditional, but they add a welcome burst of freshness. Gild the lily with an order of lumpia (right, $9).

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