Monthly Archives: March 2009

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Semolina Bars with cranberries

I  just LOVE cranberries. I discovered them when I moved to the U.S. I would always buy a bag around Thanksgiving, wishing they were available year-round.

And guess what? They are super good for you!

They have more antioxidants than 277 food stuff and most fruits!

I figured why not use them with our […]

By |March 31st, 2009|Others|6 Comments
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Eggplant salad (Al-Raheb) ألراھب

By |March 29th, 2009|Others|3 Comments
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Fatayer (Spinach turnovers)


I wish you could have tasted Asma’s fatayers! They were the best in Beirut!

The dough was so thin and translucent and so buttery. The spinach filling was melting with just the right touch of tartness.

Asma  was  a Kurdish lady and  mother of seven, who immigrated to Lebanon from her native Kurdistan to escape […]

By |March 27th, 2009|Salty|31 Comments
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Veggies in pita


I bet a lot of people when told to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables picture in their head some iceberg lettuce covered with ranch dressing, or the ubiquitous Caesar salad with all the croutons and creamy cheese sauce.

In the Lebanese cooking, folks actually love their vegetables, which take up a dominant share  in […]

By |March 23rd, 2009|Others|1 Comment
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Hummus (Chick-peas hummus)

I get so annoyed, actually fuming when I see mediocre or downright disgusting hummus served all over America. I guess I take it personally. In Dallas, it is served at American and  Iranian and  Greek and  Indian restaurants, in addition to so-called Mediterranean restaurants. It never tastes how it should! Since Hummos is actually very […]

By |March 21st, 2009|Salty|27 Comments
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Stuffed swiss chard leaves (Mehchi selek)


I find it annoying that so-called dolmas are the only stuffed leaves known to the American consumer ; furthermore, they are most often than not stringy, rubbery, tough, greasy, little bundles. In reality, stuffed grape leaves and swiss chard leaves should always be meltingly tender!

If you do not have access to tender, young […]

By |March 18th, 2009|Salty|12 Comments
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Semolina cookies with date (Maamoul)

We knew Easter was coming when our Teta (grandmother) was busy in the kitchen making these. Hers were unbelievably soft and crumbly and filled with the luscious and buttery date paste. She also made round ones with almonds and walnuts.   I would sneak in and grab some when no one was looking. …I […]

By |March 15th, 2009|Sweets|19 Comments
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Beet salad (Salatat Shmandar)

Several beets, orange or red (about 6 medium sized)

1 bunch of green onions, sliced

Dressing #1:

1/2 cup of tahine paste in a jar

5 cloves of garlic, mashed with a dash of salt or 1 teaspoon of toom (see post)

1/2 cup of water

1/2 cup of lemon juice

Dressing #2:

3 Tablespoons of balsamic vinegar

6 Tablespoons of extra-virgin olive […]

By |March 9th, 2009|Salads|3 Comments
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Yogurt and cucumber salad



1 large jar of plain yoghurt

several cucumbers, 1 teaspoon of dried mint, crumbled to a powder

2 or 3 cloves of garlic, mashed up with a tad of salt or 1 teaspoon of toom (see post)


Pour the yogurt in a bowl. Beat it a few seconds with a fork. Add the garlic and the mint […]

By |March 6th, 2009|Salads|5 Comments
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Lentils and rice casserole (Mujaddara)


This dish is simple but wonderful. The Lebanese culinary lore claims that it was the dish for which Esau sold his birthright to his brother Jacob (Old Testament, book of Genesis). It is  served especially during fasting ; considered a dish for the poor, because of the absence of meat, it is nevertheless eaten […]

By |March 4th, 2009|Salty|2 Comments