A Lebanese-American cooks…

Hi! Kifak? Ça va?

Grew up in Beirut. Had a Teta (grand-mother) at home  in charge of the cooking. Family was francophone. Dad had grown up in Egypt, mom was from Beirut and Sidon.

I started this blog because even though I have been an American for over  30 years, my passion for my country of origin is unabated. Love its nature, its people, its cuisine. Proud  of the Lebanese people, their achievements and their courage. Interested in their complex and rich history.

Studied Pastry arts  in Dallas, worked in the field for a while. 

I want to dig into traditional Lebanese cuisine, especially rural recipes that are being rediscovered. I also like to cook American, French, Italian dishes but with a little Lebanese flair. 

I also want to dedicate my blog to my téta (grandmother), Sitt Nabiha Aftimos Zabbat; she tirelessly made kibbeh, sambusek, fatayer, muhallabieh and uwaymate, as well as negotiated  the price of eggplants or tomatoes with the street cart vendors four floors below. 

I currently divide my time between Dallas, Texas and Beirut, Lebanon.

I can be reached either through Facebook, Twitter, Google+  or at joumana_accad@yahoo.com

Hope you enjoy your visit here!


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  1. Joumana
    Posted May 1, 2013 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    @Nidal: très intéressants! je ne connais pas bien la cuisine Palestinienne ni Jordanienne a part le mussakhan que j’adore; ma grand-mère faisait les ouwaymate magnifiquement bien et de la taille d’une bille et je crois bien qu’elle les faisait frire 2 fois pour les rendre le plus croustillant possible. Amitiés de Beyrouth. J.

  2. jason argon
    Posted May 6, 2013 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    Hi Joumana! On Saturday morning I took my first swim near Marathon.The beach was full of wild violets .I cut many ,I made a syrup and I poured it over the cunafa I made for Easter. Turned out very good looking and tasty and despite the initial hesitation of our guests it disappearred! Pascal wishes to you and your family and to everybody in this site! I wish that in the Middle East the darkness and the odour of the death to vanish and RESURRECTION AND LIFE TO PREVAIL! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9H6AkFfFHUs(wedding melody from Salamina island opposite Athens)All the best!!!

  3. Joumana
    Posted May 6, 2013 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    @Jason: How wonderful, to take a swim in an idyllic place and then to go violet picking!! sounds like a dream! Thanks so much for your well-wishes my friend. All the best from Beirut across the med.

  4. Forbes PERKINS
    Posted May 31, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    How absolutely marvelous these few hours have been roaming your blog and learning more about the magnificent Lebanese cuisine. I think that you will enjoy this beautifully simple tangerine and almond meal cake that was published in Elizabetta Minichili’s food blog. It is entirely gluten free and so delicate but richly satisfying. And easy.


    It is a magical recipe that is breathtaking in its utter simplicity. I hope you will try it.

    You have inspired me to obtain a visa for to Lebanon before leaving for Italy and Greece next month.

    May all good things come to pass and may peace pervade. FHP

  5. Joumana
    Posted May 31, 2013 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

    @Forbes: Thank you so much for the praise and I do hope you can come and visit (and that peace will prevail!). All my best, Joumana

  6. Alexis
    Posted June 30, 2013 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    I am looking for a coconut macaroon recipe (cookie) that I thought I saw on your website about one year ago. But I have looked and looked on your site and cannot find it. Can you help me with my request? Thank you so much. Your website is wonderful.

  7. Posted October 15, 2013 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Hello Jumana,

    I was browsing the net in search of blogs about arabic food and came across yours.
    I am the owner of the arabic food website http://www.basmaty.com, and was looking for bloggers to talk about our new app called وصفات بسمتي. It features over 700 cooking videos and the app is completely free. Would really appreciate your feedback. Many thanks and all the best to you!

  8. Sous
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    Dear Joumana, I am a Syrian American who has been following your blog for a year now. I have bookmarked over 20 recipes. I don’t use cookbooks anymore even though I have tens of them, and I don’t ask any friend or family member to share their recipes simply because I check Taste of Beirut almost every day. Is their any way I can vote for your blog as the best one for Mediterranean / Lebanese/ Syrian cuisine blog? I came across a list of the top 20 Middle Eastern food blogs, and I was shocked not to see your blog among them. Thank you so much for posting all these wonderful and ” top secret” recipes

  9. Joumana
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    @Sous: Thank you so much for all your praise! :) I have no idea who decided on the award, but I am not seeking out awards and prizes, so don’t worry about it!

  10. humble_pie
    Posted January 22, 2014 at 4:56 am | Permalink


    i miss that beautiful photograph of yourself (in a garden, gathering herbs, i think.) It was on the home page of this website until recently.

    perhaps you could have a little gallery of yourself doing food things – kitchens, gardens, markets, picking wild herbs in fields – and rotate them from time to time?

  11. Joumana
    Posted January 22, 2014 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    @humble_pie: You mean like Martha? :) I’ll think about it, thanks for the praise.

  12. humble_pie
    Posted January 24, 2014 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    no, not like martha … more in the sense of cooking with some added local travel glimpses.

    now that mediterranean cuisine has become the focus of so much interest in healthy nutrition, here you are at the very heart of it, coming from an ancient region that is brimful of fascinating cooking traditions.

    i’m one of those who reads recipe blogs more for the cultural setting & not necessarily because i’m going to practice each & every new recipe. Although i have to say that today’s offering of mashed potato fritters truly does appeal, because i happen to have cooked a large pot of potatoes with some onions & garlics last night!

    but when you offer a dish that came originally from an ancestor, grandmother or friend, or when you describe finding an ingredient growing wild on a mountainside or for sale in a village marketplace in lebanon, i often think that a picture of these locales would be so welcome. It would add to the sense of local culture & local community which is already present.

    a few people now & then would enrich the visual texture, too. And always, a lovely recurring motif would be photographs of yourself in the different settings.

  13. Joumana
    Posted January 25, 2014 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    @humble_pie: I totally agree! I have quite a few pictures already and will keep working on more (better ones); for instance, I found an old (young) man in his eighties in a mountain village once peeling -by hand- wild thistles called ‘akkoub here (saw huge ones in Iraq). He was not even wearing gloves! He told me how he goes up to the highest mountains with his friends, a 4 hour round trip, to forage these, and sells them; they are considered a delicacy here. I posted his photo on my personal facebook page. I will keep your commentary in mind, thanks, it is very smart and thoughtful. :)

  14. Tiya
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    How can I find your blog archive. Please do tell. I love your blog and want to see all the recipes from day one.

  15. Joumana
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    @Tiya: I have a blog archive on the left margin. Thanks for the praise!

  16. Jason Argon
    Posted April 18, 2014 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    Hi Joumana!It has been a long time that I have not communicated with you.Your vegetable recipes changed a lot our strict dietery rules of the Great Lent and many thanks for this..The humle olives ,the tahini,the wild greens will be on their throne for one more day! The house has started smelling mahlab,mastic,butter,citrus rind mixed with rose water, bee wax,incense,sea breezes, freesia and violet fragrance,chants and classical music.The explosive Greek Easter mixture! On Sunday the smell of the rotisseried lamb will be covering all the country. I wish you and every body in this site to have a good Easter time /www.youtube.com/watch?v=tvE9VNuAS2g&feature=share.Island of Corfu,Good Friday

  17. Joumana
    Posted April 18, 2014 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    @Jason Argon: Thanks so much and Happy EAster to you and your family!

  18. sarah
    Posted July 1, 2014 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    I have a similar story :). Born in Lebanon, moved to Canada at the age of 9, still very fond of Lebanon, it’s culture, it’s people no matter what religion, opinion or school of thought. Thank you for sharing all theses recipes! It’s so hard for me to cook lebanese as a newly wed, and my mom’s getting bored of me bugging her since I’m so visual I need to actually SEE the steps. Keep it up please! We need you! hehe :)

  19. Joumana
    Posted July 2, 2014 at 2:04 am | Permalink

    @sarah: I can definitely relate and when I was a newly wed, skype did not exist yet! anyway, I am planning to really beef-up my video output to really show the techniques that need to be mastered.

  20. Sam
    Posted July 13, 2014 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Hi! Thank you so much for this awesome website! I’m a Lebanese immigrant (ie mama helps over the phone from Beirut) professional (ie minimal kitchen experience :p) newly married to a Lebanese man who loves his tummy so I rely on your website very often. Making yakhnet batata today. Merci kteer!

  21. Joumana
    Posted July 13, 2014 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    @Sam: Thanks, glad I could be of help. I was in your shoes once!

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