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I guess the craving for kibbeh is not over yet :) This time it's with meat but without the stuffing. The recipe of kibbeh balls appetizers with stuffing is already posted in the appetizers section. This time I had some kibbeh left and decided just to make balls and fry them without the stuffing for a change. I like to have them with a green salad and some fries.

Kibbeh ingredients: (or any leftover kibbeh)
1 pound/lb or about 500g of minced lean meat
2 cups of fine bulgur wheat
1 onion chopped/diced
1 teaspoon of allspice or 7 spices
Salt & pepper (about half a teaspoon of each)
1/3 cup of vegetable oil

Wash the bulgur and drain, mix with the lean meat, onions, spices, salt & pepper and place in the food processor on low or mix by hand until the ingredients combine together then place in a bowl. Make the balls and fry them in vegetable oil until cooked and golden brown. Serve with fries and salad or just salad. I suggest making sandwiches like Falafel style sandwiches or wraps with greens, pickles and the dressing of your choice.

Oh by the way! Stay tuned:
GIVEAWAYS ARE STARTING THIS WEEK! All YOU HAVE TO DO IS PARTICIPATE!
8


This salad is very popular in Lebanon. The word "Panachée" concerning salad in French means several kinds or a variety of vegetables. It is very simple and some ingredients can be substituted, for example the Green Asparagus instead of white. Any kind of mushrooms can be used too, fresh or canned. or even lettuce. For a simple measuring, I would go with a cup of each ingredients.

Here's my version:
- Chopped Lettuce
- Fresh Endives leaves (cut the bottom and leaves become easy to remove)
- Corn
- Mushrooms
- Marinated artichokes (or non marinated)
- Asparagus (cooked or from a jar or can ready to use)
- Cherry tomatoes halved
- Sliced cucumbers

The dressing is very simple: Some Lemon juice, olive oil, salt & pepper. Also a little mustard can be added, about a teaspoon and you'll have a nice tangy vinaigrette.

Bon Appétit!
1



I am back with something sweet this time :) Yes, I have decided to improve my baking skills :) This recipe is adapted from 2 different places: Orange cake from the digital magazine Sweet Paul (which I really like!): www.sweetpaulmag-digital.com I used the muffin tins instead of the cake baking pan and the other one is from one of my favorite sites run by a sweet lady called Cherine: Chicho's Kitchen. I took her advice on adding Nutella to cupcakes and muffins and it turned yummy!!! I loved the idea that the cake was made with fresh oranges. The taste was wonderful!

So the main recipe for the cake from Sweet Paul is as follows:
Makes 2 cakes (3x6 pans) according to the original recipe. I got about 20 cupcakes from this batch depending on the size of the tin or paper cups you are using.
6 sweet oranges (I used 5 big ones)
6 large eggs
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup plain flour
1 1/2 cups ground almonds
2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch of salt
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
Nutella or any equivalent

Powdered sugar, for dusting (I skipped that)

Wash the oranges and place them whole and unpeeled in a pot filled with water.
Bring to a boil and let simmer for about two hours. Remove the oranges, let cool then cut in half and remove seeds. Place half the amount of oranges in a food processor and purée and set aside. Now, beat the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the orange purée, vanilla then beat all well. Add flour, baking powder, almonds, salt and mix all until smooth.

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease the baking pan, pour half the batter, add some Nutella then add the rest. This way the chocolate will be right in the middle. Bake for about 30 to 40 minutes. Stick a toothpick and if it comes out clean then it's ready. Transfer to a on a wire rack and let cool off.

Meanwhile for the topping:
Chop the remaining oranges and place in a small saucepan with sugar and water. Let all simmer until liquid transforms into a thick syrup (about 10 to 12 minutes or so). Let it cool. Then serve as the topping of the cupcakes.

Dust with powdered sugar before serving. (I skipped that step) but next time I would love to drizzle some melted chocolate instead.

Enjoy!!!!
20


Pumpkin Kibbeh is one of my favorite recipes. It's very popular during lent. I personally like it all year long or even for Thanksgiving. This recipe can be made into Kibbeh balls and fried too. This time I decided to bake it in the oven. This vegetarian recipe is healthy and full of nutrients.

Makes about 5 servings (in a 9x9 inch baking pan):

For the kibbeh:
2 cups of cooked pumpkin ( I used the ready spiced canned pumpkin)
2 cups of fine bulgur wheat
1 cups of wheat flour
1 egg
Salt & pepper to taste
1 teaspoon of allspice

For the filling:
2 cups of cooked spinach
2 cups of cooked chickpeas
1 chopped onion
1/2 cup of pine nuts or chopped almonds
Some olive oil (about 2-3 tablespoons)

1 tablespoon of vegetable oil to rub the bottom of the pan (even if it's non-stick)

- Mix all the ingredients of the kibbeh and refrigerate for half an hour. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In a skillet, add olive oil and onions and nuts let all cook for a couple of minutes or until the nuts start to brown a bit, then add the cooked spinach, then chickpeas, spices, salt & pepper. Cook until the ingredients combine together for like another couple of minutes.
- Get the kibbeh mix and divide in 2 parts and spread the first part in the baking pan, add the filling then add the second layer, making sure that the same thickness is applied, same as any kind of pie made.

Bake in a 400F oven until it's fully cooked and golden browned on top, which is from 30-40 minutes depending on the oven.

Serve with any green salad of your choice.
12



Dear fellow readers and bloggers, sorry for disappearing again! I just got back from Lebanon! A little change from the crappy weather in Europe :( Now, seems like spring is in the air :) So I guess my energy is back, yes!
This recipe is very simple and very similar to the Hommus with tahini but with a bit more tahini and not as thick as the Hommus mix. So for this recipe you'll need:
- Prepare the Hommus recipe just like you normally do (or check my Hommus recipe if it's your first time) then add to it:
- Half a cup of whole cooked chickpeas, another small spoon of tahini sauce with half a cup of water, and add some cumin. Some chopped parsley for decoration and olive oil on top and voila!
Serve with pita bread and assorted pickles, or a plate of fresh cut vegetables (tomatoes, mint, cucumber, green onions and some radishes).
12



Hello Everyone,
I have been lazy lately :( I guess the weather here in Germany has a lot to do with it. Snow and snow and nothing but snow! Low temperature and hardly any sun. That is effecting my mood and I didn't wanna let myself go and surrender to food. Therefore, I have decided to take it easy in the kitchen for a bit. At the same time I really don't wanna neglect the blog. Well, I have to reveal that I will be putting the content of the blog in a small book :) That is taking my time too. Yes, small, because I know how hard it is to travel with a lot of weight! Ok no more news about it until it's done ;))) Stay tuned!

Today, I've decided to make a simple healthy recipe, with hardly any calories. In Lebanon, this is considered as an appetizer and part of the mezze served in Lebanese restaurants. I personally can have this as a full meal. After I dip and eat the tip of the leaves of the artichoke, I clean the heart, put in in pita bread and dip it in the sauce and eat it.

Ingredients:
1 artichoke per/person
A pot of water, add some salt in it and a lemon cut into wedges.

For the dip:
Juice of 1 lemon, 1 small mashed clove of garlic, 1/2 cup of olive oil and salt & pepper to taste.

Rinse the artichoke(s) well and place in the pot. Bring to a boil then reduce to medium-high and let it cook until done. It's cooked when it's soft to taste. Just grab one and taste it, or stick the tip of the knife in the lower part of the artichoke. When it's done, place the artichoke upside down in a strainer to drain the water, then serve with the dip.
To eat: Take one leave and dip it and eat the soft tip. When you get to the flower, clean all the pointy hair-like that covers the heart which is very nutritious and tasty.
You can also, cut the tips and spread the leaves and drizzle the dip or dressing and enjoy!
13




Happy beginning of a new decade! This was the Walima Challenge for the month of December featuring the Moroccan cuisine, but due to the holidays and all, I am late, but it's never too late when it comes to good food ;) So here's the couscous with beef that I made.
The recipe is copied and pasted as given by the Walima site.
I skipped the squash, and the smen and replaced it with canola vegetable oil. I added a small bell pepper too. The couscous I found in the market had a sachet of mixed herbs and garlic that I added to and turned out to be very good. I made couscous with beef before but with more ingredients like turnips, cabbage, potatoes and eggplant. This recipe is pretty good and easy.

COUSCOUS WITH BEEF

Ingredients :
- 1 pound couscous
- 1 pound meat (beef), you can use chicken or lamb.
- 2-3 carrots
- 3 zucchini
- 3 tomatoes
- squash
- 1 big onion
- parsley & coriander
- chickpeas
- 2 Tbs vegetable oil
- 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/2 tsp turmeric, pinch pf saffron
- water
optional :
- 1/2 tsp smen (butter ghee)

Steps :
Heat the oil at medium temperature, add chopped onion and the meat.
After 15 min, add chopped tomatoes, parsley, coriander and the spices, let cook 10 min, add water, let cook 1hour.
To prepare the couscous :
Add some water and fluff it up with your hands, let it soak.

After the meat has cooked 1 hour, place couscous in the steamer pot and let steam 20 min.
Remove couscous from the heat, let it cool, add water, fluff it with your hands, add salt and oil, if you want, you can add smen (butter ghee).
Put couscous to steam another 20 min.
Add carrots to the meat, after 10 min, add zucchini, squash, chickpeas, let cook.
To serve, place couscous first, then the meat, the vegetables and the sauce.

If you don't have a couscous pot, you can follow the same steps using a microwave.
7




This month's Walima Cooking Club challenge is representing the Lebanese Cuisine.
We share this recipe also with the Turkish cuisine and with a little difference in preparation, they call it "mantee" or "manti" and the shish barak word that we use is I would say comes from the Turkish and Balkan word "burek". I used the manti this time in my recipe which is the dough filled with meat, it's the same except that it comes in a different shape. In Lebanon, we shape it (the Sheesh Barak) like tortellini.

Here are the ingredients as given by Walima Club founder Arlette from Phoenician Gourmet blog:

Lebanese Style Sheesh Barak

INGREDIENTS:
1 ½ kg of plain Greek style yogurt or home made
1/2 quantity of Ajeen or basic dough recipe
3 cloves garlic, crushed with a dash of salt
1 cup finely chopped fresh mint (if fresh is not available use couple spoons dried)
½ kg (16 oz) ground meat (either beef or lamb)
3 medium sized onions, finely chopped
¼ cup fried pine nuts
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp butter

Basic Dough or Ajeen
(this is used in many savory pastries)

INGREDIENTS:
1 kg (32 oz / 5 cups) plain flour
1 ¼ cups warm water
½ cup olive oil
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tbsp salt
2 tbsp sugar

PREPARATION:
Sift the flour into a working surface.Mix in salt and sugar. Make a well in the center. Pour olive oil and vegetable oil in the well. Mix the dry ingredients into the liquid. Add water gradually. Knead the dough into a ball (if the dough is too stiff add some water). Knead the dough on a floured working surface until it is smooth and elastic this can be done in an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, or in a food processor. Form the dough into a ball and put into a lightly floured bowl, covered with a damp cloth. Leave in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size.

For the Cooked Yogurt:

INGREDIENTS:
1 1/2 kg of plain Greek Style Yogurt
or home made you can check my blog for home made yogurt (you can check my blog for homemade yogurt)
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp salt
1 cup water + 1 beaten egg (or egg's white)

PREPARATION:
Strain yogurt using a smooth colander into a pot. Add egg or egg's white. Dissolve cornstarch in 1 cup of water. Stir into cold yogurt for 2 minutes.Place on medium heat, stirring constantly until it boils.
Preparing the Sheesh Barak:

Roll out the dough with a rolling pin to about 1 cm thickness. Using a round cookie cutter (medium size), press over dough to get equal rounds.
Fry onion in shortening till color changes a little. Add meat, salt, allspice and cinnamon. Stir occasionally and fry for 7-8 minutes. Add pine nuts and Mix. Drain the mixture as butter would affect closing the pastries.

Spread the round a little with your fingers. Place 1 tspn of the filling on it. Fold over one end to make a semi-circle. Press edges down to seal. Take the two ends from the straight side, bring them together to make a small ring. Press well. Repeat till rounds are done.

You will have left over dough , (this is the best part) roll the remaining dough in thin rope and cut into diagonals. Place the stuffed dough and the cut pastries in a tray with parchment, Bake in a hot oven (400F) for 10 minutes or until golden. During this time prepare and cook the yogurt and when it starts to boil add the baked pastries to the boiling cooked yogurt one by one. Let it boil over low heat for 10 minutes or till pastries are cooked.


Note: The egg and the cornstarch are there as stabilizers so that the yogurt won’t separate.
Make sure to cook the yogurt on medium low heat , high heat could ruin the sauce.

In a separate skillet you’ll want to quickly sautée the garlic and mint in one tbsp extra virgin olive oil and add it to the Sheesh Barak. And cook for another 2 minutes .

Serve hot in bowls, or you can serve with it Lebanese Rice Pilaf with Vermicelli.
13




I thought I could post something quick to serve on Thanksgiving table. A combination of an appetizer-salad or combined side. I reviewed quite a few recipes of potato purees I can try this one because it's quick and simple and can be pretty much used with fish or meat. I really liked the flavor of the sweet potatoes baked for few minutes inside the orange shells. Hope you like it too.

For the Potato Puree: (4 servings)
2 medium sweet potatoes peeled and cooked in boiled water until soft and ready
2 oranges cut in half and emptied (I juiced them, then scraped off the rest
2 tablespoon of orange juice (from those oranges I suggest)
1/2 tsp garlic powder
Some chopped chives
Few drops of hot sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil or 1 tablespoon of butter
Some salt, black pepper, garlic powder

For the salad:
Fresh watercress, some chopped onions, some tomato slices or wedges, some toasted pine nuts. Balsamic vinegar and olive oil for the dressing.

After the potatoes are cooked, drain the water and mash them. Add butter or olive oil, the spices, garlic powder, orange juice, hot sauce. Mix them all together then fill the orange halves with the puree and bake for about 12 minutes in a 375 oven. I baked them in the muffin tin because it hold the oranges pretty well. Put the salad together. Now serve the baked orange potato puree by sprinkling the chopped chives on top and some black pepper. Serve it on the side of the salad or in the middle.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
4



Bulgur Bedfeen is a healthy healthy recipe, can be made with chicken, stew meat or simply vegetarian substituting the chicken or meat stock with vegetable stock or water. The one I chose today is with chicken. I used a couple of chicken breasts but you can use half a chicken or even a whole chicken depending on the amount of servings.

Ingredients: (About 4-5 Servings)
2 big Chicken breasts cooked, by covering them with water and adding 2 bay leaves, 1 cinnamon stick, small carrot, black pepper, small onion, 2 cardamoms (I saved the broth for the rest of the recipe).
2 cups of Bulgur no.2 (not the fine one we use for tabbouli)
2 cups of cooked chickpeas or garbanzo beans
4 cups of broth
1 medium onion diced
2 tablespoons of tomato sauce
Olive oil (you can substitute with butter)
Salt, pepper, allspice to taste

After you cook the chicken, shred and set aside.
In the cooking pot, add onions, olive oil, spices. cook for a couple of minutes then add the washed and drained bulgur, mix and cook for a couple of minutes then add the chickpeas, tomato paste and broth. Bring to a boil then let simmer just like rice.
Serve with chicken on top. This meal is served with green salad or plain yogurt.
14


Dear fellow readers and bloggers :) I have been away for the whole summer and part of fall, but now getting ready to start updating my blog. I moved from Texas to Stuttgart, Germany and we are still settling down. It takes time specially that the kitchen stuff were not around since our stuff were shipped from the US. It took 2+ months :( Also I traveled to Lebanon for a month. That contributed in delaying my blog activity.
Stuttgart cuisine is called Swabian and I might start preparing some of that food during the cold winter season here, we will definitely need comfort food. And of course the beer is something you don't wanna miss here :)
Here are some photos of our out & about eatings :) Including Greek :)
2


This is my savory recipe for the second Walima cooking challenge for the month of June. The ingredients and directions below are as given by Summer. I kept the fish as a whole fillet, and I used Tilapia fish. The jalapenos that I used were ones that I had hand picked them fresh earlier this year and put them in a jar full of olive oil and preserved them, very powerful! I also left the sauce on the side and poured it over the fish before serving. The taste of this dish reminded me of a similar fish with sauce that I had in one of my favorite Indian restaurants, I guess the use of turmeric and spices is what made it so similar, as well as the flavor of the Basmati rice.

Ingredients:
1 tsp of turmeric
2 tbsp of vegetable oil
1 kg of fish fillet cubed
2 jalapeno peppers seeds removed and finely chopped
1 tbsp of freshly chopped fresh ginger
4 cloves of garlic chopped
Some fresh ginger chopped
2 med size chopped onions
2 med chopped tomatoes
1 1/2 tsp of mustard
2 ½ cups of water
2 cubes of chicken broth , unless you have homemade chicken stock
Replace the water with stock
2 tbsp of freshly chopped cilantro

Preparation:
Mix the turmeric with veggie oil, and marinate the fish in it for couple of minutes.
Then lay the fish on a baking tray and bake in a preheated 400F oven for 18 minutes to turn golden brown.
In a food processor, add the garlic, onion, jalapeno peppers tomatoes ginger and mustard, and whip until it turns to paste.
I did not puree my sauce, I felt that it would taste better chunky.
Heat a non stick pan and cook the paste on medium heat, without oil, till it start to turn golden,(takes around 5 min) add the water and dissolved chicken bouillon or the chicken stock, whatever you have on hand, and cook for 7-8 minutes more to become a thick sauce, pour over the fish in the oven and continue cooking for 10 more minutes.
Serve over Basmati rice and sprinkle fresh cilantro on top.

Thanks Summer!!!!! That was very delicious!
18


Okra stew is one of my favorite stews. I love its taste when it combines with the tomato sauce, cilantro and pomegranate molasses. Very tangy and full of texture. I follow my mom's recipe, I love the way she makes it. It's a very popular recipe in Lebanon.
Here in the United States I don't always find fresh small okras, so I buy it from the frozen section at a Middle Eastern store or from the local grocery store but they come sliced since they let them grow too big. Small okra is always preferable though.
This stew is best served with rice and vermicelli (you can find how to prepare it if you go back to my recipe of beans stew or fasolia w rizz that I posted before).

Ingredients:
A frozen bag of small okra (about 500g or 15 ounce)
Canola oil (or any vegetable oil) just enough to fry the okra
1 tablespoon of butter
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 big can of tomato sauce
2 cups of diced tomatoes (fresh or canned)
4 cloves of garlic sliced
1 onion chopped
1 fresh bunch of cilantro chopped
1 tablespoon of pomegranate molasses (optional)
Juice of a lemon
Salt & pepper to taste
1 teaspoon of allspice
500grs or a bit more than half a pound of lean stew meat

Thaw the frozen okra, drain and fry in hot oil until golden then transfer to a plate covered with paper towel to drain the excess oil, set that aside.
In the cooking pot add chopped onions, butter, olive oil, salt & pepper. Then add the meat, garlic and allspice. Let everything cook until the meat browns then add the diced tomatoes, once they're cooked add the tomato sauce and some water, cover for few minutes until everything incorporates and cook, then add the okra (don't stir!), let it sink in the sauce and cook slowly. Add the pomegranate molasses, lemon juice and fresh cilantro. Let everything simmer until ready.
Serve with rice.
9


This is a very easy salad to prepare. This kind of vegetarian food is called 'ate3 or aateh' in Lebanon, meaning without meat and in oil. It is very delicious when served with pita bread, green onions on the side and radishes. For a quick serve I used a can, but you can soak beans overnight and cook them then prepare the salad. I used fresh cilantro because I am huge fan of fresh cilantro, but a lot of people use parsley.

Ingredients:
1 can (15 oz) of cooked white beans (washed and drained)
1 small onions chopped (or green onions/scallions)
1 crushed clove of garlic
1/2 cup of fresh chopped cilantro or parsley
Juice of one lemon
Some olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste

In a small bowl, add the garlic, lemon juice and drizzle some olive oil, then add the beans, onions and cilantro or parsley. Mix them all together and voila!
You can adjust the lemon juice and olive oil to taste too.
10


The May 2009, Challenge is brought to us by Khadidja Zehani from www.dessert-world.blogspot.com. Khadidja worked on two recipes to give us two choices. One for a wonderful savoury dish and one for outstanding dessert….

This is an Algerian dish. Here's a site that describes the wonderful flavors and aromas and origins of the Algerian Cuisine: http://www.algeria.com/cuisine/

I am not very talented when it comes to desserts, I admit that, but I am working on it ;) Therefore I chose the savoury this time.

Here are the ingredients as given:

Tajine Zitoun (Olives Tajine)

This dish could be made with chicken or lamb or both. I personally mix the two meats in the same dish
This recipe has some added meat balls and this is optional. If not using both meats, keep the exact same recipe.

Ingredients

1 whole chicken cut into pieces
2 lbs of lamb
1 large onion
1 Tbsp butter or oil
2 cups pitted green olives
2 medium carrots, cut into circles
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 chicken cube
water
parsley

Meat balls (optional)

1/2 lb ground beef
1 small onion
1 small egg
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Flour to dredge the meat balls

To thicken the sauce:
1 Tbsp soft butter
2 tbsp flour

Preparation:

1- In a pot / pressure cooker put the butter /oil, chicken pieces, lamb pieces (if using), the onion, salt, pepper cinnamon. Cook over medium heat until the onions
are translucent. Add the chicken cube and enough water to cover the meat. Bring the mixture to a boil then cover and cook until the meat is tender. If using both meats, half way through cooking, remove the chicken pieces and continue to cook until the lamb is tender.

2 - In a sauce pan, put the olives and cover with water. Bring to a boil and let the olives boil for 3 to 5 mn. Drain and repeat the same process 2 to 3 times until the olives are no longer bitter.They should not be too salty neither. Set the olives aside.

3- Prepare the meat balls: mix all the ingredients and make balls. Put about 1/2 in of oil in a frying pan and heat over medium heat. Dredge each meat ball in flour and fry until golden brown. Drain on a paper towel and set aside.

4- Once the meat pieces are cooked, add the olives, the sliced carrots and the meat balls. Bring the sauce to a boil, cover the pot and cook until the carrots and the olives are tender, and the meat balls are cooked through.

5-To finish the dish, mix the butter and flour to form a smooth paste. Bring the sauce to a boil and gradually add the butter/ flour mixture, stirring continuously. Let the sauce boil for 3 to 5 minutes. The sauce should be slightly thick. Add 2 tbsp chopped parsley. Serve the dish accompanied with lemon wedges.

Ok, now here's what I changed a bit only because it's the first time I cook this kind of tajine and I was afraid to ruin it.
While the chicken was cooking I added few fresh thyme stems from my garden ;), a couple of bay leaves and some cardamom. I did not use lamb, but I still added the meatballs. Since I added some butter and oil at the beginning, I did not make the paste with flour and butter, just added flour. What I can say about this dish is that the flavor is really good and tangy specially with the lemon wedges. I ate twice from it after I cooked it. I had it with some pita bread. Oh it was so good! Thank you Khadija! Congratulations for all the Walima Club members for making this happen and thanks to Arlette who came up with the idea and made it happen too by gathering us all. Cheers everybody!
14


Serves 4-5
5 potatoes peeled and medium cubed
1 onion, chopped
1 small chopped bell pepper
1 clove of garlic chopped
3 cups of chopped tomatoes (or can cubed tomatoes)
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
1 tablespoon of flour
1 tablespoon of sweet paprika
1 tablespoon of butter
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 tablespoon of allspice or 7 spices
2 cups of fresh chopped cilantro
1 cup of lean minced meat (or 1/2 pound cubed stew meat)
An optional dash of red pepper flakes (or more depending on how spicy you want it)
Few cups of water
Salt & pepper to taste

For the plain white Rice:
The recipe is in most of my previous recipes of rice or stews

In the cooking pot, add the butter, chopped onions and garlic, minced meat and olive oil, let it cook on medium heat. Add salt & pepper to taste and red pepper flakes. Once the meat browns and cooks, add the tomatoes, let the ingredients cook for a couple of minutes then add the potatoes and let them all cook for few minutes. Add the flour to coat the ingredients. Now, add water enough to cover the stew, then add the tomato paste and stir a bit to dissolve it. Add the paprika, allspice and cilantro. Cook until the potatoes are done. Serve with the rice.

I chose minced meat this time, just for a change. Normally I use beef stew meat, or sometimes I make this without meat if I want it a vegetarian dish.
10



I love Man'oucheh (or Mankoucheh). It's a Lebanese Thyme or Zaatar pie, knowing that in Lebanon we have some many kinds of man'ouchehs, like cheese, kishik, zaatar and cheese etc... and some places keep getting more and more creative everyday in serving this traditional breakfast. Since most of the time I keep dough ready in my refrigerator, I was craving man'oucheh this morning. It's very simple and easy. Roll the dough, I like it thin and crispy, then spread the zaatar mix(below) on top, pop it in an 450F oven for about 10 minutes or until gold and crispy (unless you don't like it crispy then take it out before). Cut and serve. Sometimes I like it with vegetables, like fresh mint, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers, green onions and some olives and labneh too! Very tasty and filling, this is what we call in Lebanon 'Man'oucheh Extra'. So here are the ingredients:

I prepare this amount of dough to make a big pizza and a Man'oucheh, so it yields two pies. Or you can simply use a ready dough if you don't wanna prepare it yourself ;)

For the simple dough:
2 1/2 cups of flour
1 cup of warm water
1 small pack of yeast
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Mix the dough, cover and let it rise then roll.

For the Zaatar spread: (I eyeball this)
- Some fine chopped onions (optional)
- Some Zaatar Mix (this mix can be found in Middle eastern stores or in healthy food stores, it's the one with sesame and sumac and spices)
- Olive oil
In a small bowl, add the onions, Zaatar Mix and drizzle olive oil and mix until you get a medium-thick paste, you don't wanna add too much olive oil but enough to spread the mixture on the dough without lumps.

Sahtein!
12


I love homemade burgers! They're easy and tasty and you can adjust the flavors however you like them!

Makes about 4 patties:
1 cup of cooked chickpeas
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup small chopped carrots
1/2 cup small chopped bell pepper
1 mashed clove of garlic
1/2 chopped parsley
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1 egg (optional)
1/2 tbsp of cumin
1 teaspoon of mustard
Salt & pepper to taste

In a food processor, add all the above ingredients except the egg and breadcrumbs, pulse few times until all the ingredients are incorporated together, the transfer into a bowl and add the breadcrumbs and the egg and fold all ingredients together. I like to refrigerate them for a bit, then form patties. In a non-stick skillet add about a teaspoon of canola oil (or any vegetable oil) or just enough to coat the skillet and cook the patties, few minutes on each side until done.

For the potatoes: (as much potatoes as you want)
Cut potatoes into wedges without peeling them (after cleaning them well). Marinate in olive oil, fresh thyme or rosemary or both, some garlic powder and some pepper. Let them sit for half an hour in a bowl or in a Ziploc bag. Then empty them on a baking rack and bake them in a 375F oven until golden brown.

To serve:
Cut a Hamburger bun in half and slightly toast it, then add on the bottom side, ketchup, then a lettuce leaf, add the veggie patty, then top with sliced onion and tomato and cover with upper part of the bun. Serve the potatoes on the side. I like it with mango salsa. It is a ready salsa that I buy, made of grilled bell peppers, mangoes, tomatoes and a lot of spices.
Hamburgers can be served in so many creative ways, this was a simple version. Caramelized onions are really good too instead of raw onions etc, etc...
12



Ingredients:
1 whole chicken (or any parts of the chicken you want), cleaned, washed and cut
2 lemons
4-5 medium potatoes, peeled and medium sliced
1 cup of olive oil
2 tablespoons of Herbes De Provence (or Italian herbs)
5 big cloves of garlic, mashed
Salt & pepper to taste

In a container, place the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, herbs and spices. Add the chicken to marinade. You can marinade for an hour, or you can do it overnight. Now, in a separate bowl and same marinade ingredients I marinated the potatoes. You can half-way fry the potatoes and let them drain on a paper towel or just marinate, for less calories.
In a baking dish enough to fit the chicken and the potatoes, add the chicken then add and distribute the potatoes too. Bake in a 375F oven, until the chicken is fully cooked and the potatoes too. It's better to cover the baking dish with aluminum foil for the first 20 minutes or so. Then remove the foil and let it bake and gold-brown. This way the chicken won't dry and will cook faster.
- However, some people prefer to sautee in a skillet with some vegetable oil, the chicken for few minutes on both sides, then transfer it to the baking dish and add the marinade and bake along with the potatoes. Both ways work.

I served it along with saffron-rice and a green salad, simple bed of lettuce, with a herb vinaigrette dressing.

My vinaigrette dressing consisted of some Herbes De Provence, olive oil, a little bit of mustard and balsamic vinegar. For the saffron-rice, very simple too, added a pinch of saffron while the rice was cooking.
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Moi!

authorHello, my name is MAG. I've been running this blog since 2007.
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