Posts Tagged ‘middle eastern’

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bemiah (easy lebanese okra)

November 24, 2013

2 lbs of Okra
1 and ½ medium sized onions
4 large mushrooms, chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 large can of diced tomatoes (preferably firewood)
4 cloves of freshly peeled garlic, minced
2 bell peppers
A dash of Cayenne Pepper
A dash of salt
½ to 1 cup of Coconut Oil (or other oils) for frying

Cut/discard the stems of Okra, rinse well, then let dry. Chop all the other vegetables and mince the garlic.
In a deep pot, fry the Okra in ½ cup of oil until they turn brownish, then place them on paper towels or in strainer to strain away the oil.
In the same pot, add 4-6 teaspoons of fresh oil and saute the onions and mushrooms until they turn golden/lightly caramelized. Add the bell pepper and saute for 3-4 more minutes.
Add the okra to the cooking pot, stir well, then add the diced tomatoes and chopped tomatoes, the garlic, Cayenne peppers and salt, mix well and let stew on low heat for 10 minutes while stirring occasionally.
Serve hot or cold with a side of rice.

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from mama’s lebanese kitchen

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chicken and carrot tagine

August 6, 2013

8 chicken drumsticks or equivalent in other chicken parts
1 large onion, sliced
4 minced cloves of garlic
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 t cinnamon
250ml (1 cup) chicken stock or water
a few fresh tomatoes, a can of tomatoes, or some tomato sauce
one giant shredded carrot
one small can of garbanzo beans or chickpeas (optional)
fistful of sliced almonds (optional)
1 handful dried pitted dates, halved, or prunes, halved (optional)
fresh mint, parsley, or cilantro to serve
olive oil

preheat oven to 350ish. fry onions in olive oil using a large oven-safe cast-iron skillet. when soft and sweet, add garlic and spices. fry ~2 mins. add tomatoes and chickpeas. cook ~3 minutes. add water or stock and fruit or nuts if using, bring to a boil. shut off heat. add shredded carrots and bake for forty minutes or an hour, flipping chicken once mid-way through.

serve with rice, couscous, or your favorite grain.
i served it with a fattoush-like salad or salad shirazi with a hummus-like bean dip made of white beans, garbanzo beans, tahini, lime juice, and ginger with salt.

i liked it. highly recommended. very flavorful and simple.

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inspired by the lebanese recipe kitchen

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fattoush

June 24, 2013

this is a refreshing palestinian and lebanese summer salad that is great as a condiment, or a small salad served with lunch. perfect on top of falafel, or with grilled veggies or meat.

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cut tomato, cucumber, green onion, and radish into very small pieces.

mince lettuce, parsley, and mint.

(optional: purslane, arugala, spinach, or another bitter green. sumac powder.)

combine, and dress in fresh lemon juice, salt, and olive oil.

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adapted from webgaza

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fantastic! i made this with only tomato, cucumber, and radish in a pinch, with green onions and parsley from the garden, and lemon juice over the top. we ate it with barbecued veggies and meats. it came out great. everyone loved it. recommended!

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raw minted pea salad

June 21, 2013

Shell fresh green peas if you like peas raw. If you prefer them cooked, boil a bag of frozen peas until just barely cooked.

Combine in large bowl with lots of minced fresh mint, the juice of a fresh lemon, and whatever else you have in your house. I’m sure this would be good with any fruit or salad veggies.

Crack some black pepper over it.

optional: add strawberries and balsamic.

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I loved this. It was simple and perfect.

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stovetop pita bread

January 14, 2013
440 grams bread flour (1.9 cups)
264 grams warm water (1.1 cups) (80 F.)
9 grams salt
8 grams instant dry yeast 
 
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and generously flour it, set aside. Mix all the ingredients in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment. Mix on low speed for 2 minutes or until the dough comes together. Turn the mixer to medium speed and mix for 8 minutes or until the dough turns smooth and cleans out the bowl. It should not be sticky. Turn the dough into a working surface and knead the dough with your hands for a minute more. Divide the dough into 75 grams pieces and roll into balls. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let the dough relax for 10 minutes. Roll out the dough into a 1/4-inch thick circle and place it on to the prepared trays. Cover with plastic film and let it proof for 40 minutes. When ready, heat up a pan (I used a crepe pan but a cast iron pan will work great too) and lightly oil it with olive oil. Cook the pita for a couple of minutes on each side. Wrap the warm bread in a large kitchen towel to keep the bread soft until ready to eat.
 
Note: Be really careful when handling the already proofed dough as it can affect the “puffing” process if the dough is pulled.
 
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from delicious shots

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baba ghanouj

December 6, 2011

baba ghanoush, baba ganush, baba ghannouj or baba ghannoug, or بابا غنوج

some kids, wrinkling their noses, asked me yesterday, “what are you eating? it looks like brown mush.”

you know what else looks like brown mush? chocolate frosting. don’t judge a book by its cover!

two eggplants
one head of garlic
one hot pepper
one zucchini (optional, or whatever extra veggies you have in the house)
parsley (optional)

stick all these things in an oven and roast at a high temperature (425? 400? depends on your oven and elevation.) until blackish outside. discard skins. stick everything in a food processor or blender.

add lime or lemon juice and salt to taste, and a fat spoonful or two of tahini and olive oil. adjust seasonings to taste.

puree.

you can add anything to this and it’d be fantastic. sometimes i’ll stick in whatever vegetables are going bad in my fridge (hence the addition of the zucchini to the recipe). often i’ll add a pinch of cumin, cinnamon, paprika, black pepper, and/or sumac. cayenne is a must for me, but the hot pepper and cayenne are, of course, both optional.

if you, like those kids, are really offended by its color, why not add paprika, roasted beets, or tons of green leafy vegetables?

wonderful served as a dip, along with hummus, pita (or dosai or any other bread,) and veggies. don’t worry, dieters, celiacs-faces, and other gfs! you can dip anything in this – kebabs, carrots, celery, tomatoes, anything. make “tortillas” out of lettuce, kale, cabbage, or mustard greens and wrap up some beans and baba. you can use it as a sandwich spread – a great lo-cal mayo substitute with way more flavor.

a great baba trick? buy a week’s worth of veggies, roast them all in one day, tupperware ‘em, and your mid-week baba fix will be ready in less than five minutes.

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fried cauliflower with tahini-pom sauce

November 27, 2011

i recently picked up a bottle of pomegranate molasses at a middle eastern shop. for $2, how could you go wrong? i think i’ll try it for the first time tonight, either in an eggplant-lentil stew or this, a fantastic-looking recipe from here.

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FRIED CAULIFLOWER WITH TAHINI AND POMEGRANATE MOLASSES

500ml sunflower oil
2 medium cauliflower heads, split into small florets, weighing 1kg in all
8 spring onions, each cut into three long segments
180g tahini paste
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
15g chopped parsley
15g chopped mint, plus more to finish
150g Greek yoghurt
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp pomegranate molasses, plus more to finish
sea salt and black pepper
Roughly 180ml water

Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Lay in a few cauliflower florets at a time and cook for two to three minutes, turning so they colour evenly. Once golden-brown, transfer to a colander with a slotted spoon, sprinkle with a little salt and leave to drain. Repeat with the rest of the cauliflower. Next, fry the spring onions, also in batches, for a minute. Add to the cauliflower and leave to cool down.

Pour the tahini paste into a large mixing bowl and add the garlic, herbs, yoghurt, lemon juice, pomegranate molasses and seasoning. Stir with a wooden spoon as you add the water. The tahini sauce will first thicken and then loosen up as you add water. Don’t add too much, just enough to get a thick yet smooth pourable consistency, a bit like honey.

Stir the cauliflower and onion into the tahini bowl, taste and adjust the seasoning. You may also want to add more lemon juice.

To serve, spoon into a serving bowl and finish with a few drops of pomegranate molasses and some mint.

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5/29/12-
I didn’t really follow the proportions. Also, the recipe called for way more sauce than my cauliflower needed. I tried to stick somewhat closely, though. Because the cauliflower are fried, it’s much more filling than it sounds, and part of a batch did me well for lunch. The pomegranate molasses doesn’t stand out strongly; the sauce mostly tastes of tahini and lemon. Cauliflower isn’t my favorite, but this camouflaged the cauliflower flavor well enough that I ate until I was full! I hoped that frying the cauliflower in oil would make it less cauliflowery, but it didn’t.

Not my favorite dish, but the yogurt sauce was good. I suspect I will find myself making that yogurt sauce again – but without the cauliflower.

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labneh

August 6, 2011

the first time i tasted labneh, i hated it. so salty! such a weird texture! so… yogurty!

now i crave it.

recipe:
make yogurt (or buy it, whatever.)

pour it into a bowl with salt. squeeze a lemon into it and add a little zest.
flavor it. fresh herbs (mint? parsley?), garlic, sprouts, olive oil, whatever. stir it up. let it sit a few minutes.

line a colander with cheesecloth or muslin and set it in a big bowl.
pour the mixture in, let it drip for ten minutes (or however long, doesn’t matter,) then gather the edges and let it hang and drip whey into the bowl.

(i read recently that sometimes people line a colander with paper towels instead of cheesecloth and let it sit in there instead of hanging it. i’ve never tried it. i like cheesecloth because it’s reusable.)

drain for any amount of time you want. an hour should be sufficient for wet, spreadable labneh, perfect as a cream cheese substitute. two days should work for storage – roll the labneh into small balls, and store in olive oil with a sprig of thyme, a few cloves of garlic, or whatever you like.

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falafel

November 21, 2010

i remember my mind being blown at the variety of condiments and cold salads at even the most broke-down falafel carts. in the middle east, they’ll put ANYTHING on a falafel – almost all of it laced with parsley and raw onions. this is my tried-and-true falafel recipe.

 

  • 1 cup dried chickpeas
  • 1/2 large onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon dried hot red pepper
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4-6 tablespoons flour
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    1. Put the chickpeas in a large bowl and add enough cold water to cover them by at least 2 inches. Let soak overnight, then drain. Or use canned chickpeas, drained.

    2. Place the drained, uncooked chickpeas and the onions in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the parsley, cilantro, salt, hot pepper, garlic, and cumin. Process until blended but not pureed.

    3. Sprinkle in the baking powder and 4 tablespoons of the flour, and pulse. You want to add enough bulgur or flour so that the dough forms a small ball and no longer sticks to your hands. Turn into a bowl and refrigerate, covered, for several hours.

    4. Form the chickpea mixture into balls about the size of walnuts.

    5. Heat 3 inches of oil to 375 degrees in a deep pot or wok and fry 1 ball to test. If it falls apart, add a little flour. Then fry about 6 balls at once for a few minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.

     

     

     

    serve with a cucumber-bellpepper-onion salad, pickled vegetables, chopped tomatoes-and-parsley, tahini sauce, baba ghanouj, hummus, hot pepper pickles, and about a million other kinds of cold vegetable salads.
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    figs, goat cheese, and honey

    November 16, 2010

    to try:

    fig and goat cheese pizza

    fig, honey, and goat cheese tartlet

    fig and goat cheese tart

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