Monthly Archives: March 2011

  • sea-bass-in-white-wine-sauce-550x366

Sea bass in acqua pazza


Let’s say you come home late, you are starving, yet you want a good meal: grab a piece of your favorite fish and make it in acqua pazza, i.e. in crazy water.

Get a loaf of  good French bread to sop up the juices and a  bottle of  decent white wine and you are […]

By |March 31st, 2011|Salty|22 Comments
  • Diet-dessert-550x440

Citrus and cream jelly


Diet desserts?  I always figured if one feels like eating a slice of cake, great, eat it, enjoy every morsel, and cut back on portions of food at the next meal.

But what if you want to cut down on your food intake? Agar-agar is an appetite suppressant: Making these desserts and having one […]

By |March 30th, 2011|Sweets|39 Comments
  • foul-mudammas-550x367



If you live in the US or elsewhere and you would like to get a glimpse of the food most popular in Egypt, then open a can of foul mudammas and make yourself a bowl of foul.

Foul mudammas in cans is available at any Middle-Eastern store or even the ethnic section of supermarkets.

Foul is […]

By |March 29th, 2011|Salty|19 Comments
  • kaak-bootah-2

Semolina date cookies (kaak bel-ajweh)


This is the other pastry that would make its appearance in our house for the Easter holiday,  kaak b’ootah (aka kaak bel-ajweh); this one was my favorite because of the sweet date filling.

My grandmother would sit at the tiny kitchen table and would shape these by hand with brass clips. I would use tweezers […]

By |March 28th, 2011|Sweets|39 Comments
  • vegetable-550x366

And that vegetable is?…


Anybody care to shed some light?

It is about 7 inches (18 cms)  long and weighs about 10 ounces (300 g.).

ANSWER: It is a purple radish and is imported from Korea.

By |March 27th, 2011|Tips|32 Comments
  • spring-soup-2-550x366

Spring soup


I lived in Aix-en-Provence for six months after finishing up high school; Aix is a beautiful town in the South of France filled with picturesque courtyards outfitted with ancient fountains and majestic old mansions. I was supposed to be studying political sciences at the university, but I found the courses too depressing and spent […]

By |March 26th, 2011|Salty|33 Comments
  • Strawberry-and-bocconcini-salad-550x397

Bocconcinis with strawberries salad


I have had the most wonderful experience recently: I reconnected (after decades!) with my former schoolmates from high school on Facebook. Most of us scattered and relocated all over the globe when the war in Lebanon was raging in the late seventies.

We all attended a French school in Beirut, Lycée Franco-Libanais., a school established […]

By |March 25th, 2011|Salads|15 Comments
  • Stuffed-chard-coil-and-lamb-chops-22-550x404

Stuffed swiss chard leaves with lamb chops and yogurt sauce


Today I made some stuffed swiss chard leaves in roughly one third of the time it normally takes to make them.

I simply changed one thing: Instead of cutting the leaves into neat four-inch squares, I thought “why not make king-size cigars instead?”

I bought two bunches of swiss chard and they were beautiful, with huge […]

By |March 24th, 2011|Salty|21 Comments
  • Maamouls-stuffed-with-pistachios-550x404

Pistachio ma’mouls


The ma’mouls were an Easter tradition in our house established by my grandmother who made them by hand from start to finish. No wooden ma’moul molds for her or  food processor. She used her fingers, knuckles and palms. To shape the cookies, she used malkat, those brass tweezers that I finally found in […]

By |March 23rd, 2011|Sweets|50 Comments
  • a-serving-of-fatteh-2-550x366

Fattet al-betenjane (eggplant casserole)


I am surprised that this dish (and its many variations) is not more popular in the US and abroad; I consider it the signature dish of all Middle-Eastern cooking. It apparently goes back centuries to the Abbassid period.

Well, never mind, today I am presenting fatteh, in the eggplant and minced lamb version. Fatteh is […]

By |March 22nd, 2011|Salty|39 Comments