Monthly Archives: June 2009

Cardamom and farina pudding (Khabeesa)

  The day I made khabeesa,  we enjoyed the fragrance of Arabia in our house. The cardamom and saffron permeated the kitchen and living room and it was intoxicating. I LOVED this dish! I found myself eating it for breakfast, then a bite after lunch, then a sliver in the afternoon and by dinner time, it […]
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Anne-Marie Bassoul, Artisan Pastry Chef

If you are in Beirut and happen to be in the mood for handmade and mouthwatering French pastries, look no further. Anne-Marie Bassoul, a Beirut native, has trained at various prestigious pastry shops in Paris for many years and decided to grace the locals with her creations. I tasted her mille-feuilles aux pralines and thought […]
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Shish Barak(meat dumplings in yogurt sauce)

My friend Hoda Soueid had graciously offered to show me how to make sheesh barak, the dish I remember most fondly from my grandmother’s. Tiny little dumplings made in a soft and very thin dough smothered in a yoghurt sauce and served over rice. Comfort food Lebanese-style! So good you can’t stop eating them! We […]
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Clotted cream, homemade (Ashta bayteeyeh)

Nothing equals the sheer ecstasy in savoring a full cream ashta. I had the absolute best ashta of my life in Baghdad in the early seventies , at the home of Dr El-Khalidi who ordered it and had it served for us with fresh eggs in the morning. In those days in Irak they had […]
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Pasta with zaatar pesto ( Zaatar akhdar pasta)

I discovered this recipe here in Beirut. The chef who created it is a woman, Marlene Mattar, who was in charge of a cooking segment in the Lebanese TV channel NBN. It is basically a pesto sauce but uses fresh zaatar called zaatar akhdar here as well as flat leaved parsley  instead of basil. Very […]
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