Monthly Archives: March 2012

  • plate-of-rice-balls-3

Sticky rice balls


There is a substantial workforce  of Filipinos in Lebanon; due to their presence, stores have popped up with a selection of Filipino products.

I love the Filipino ladies that I have encountered in Lebanon and learned a bit  about their culture as well. 

These rice balls are a twist on a traditional Filipino dessert, palitaw, consisting […]

By |March 30th, 2012|Sweets|14 Comments
  • fattet-al-makdous

Eggplant with yogurt sauce (Fattet al-Makdoos)


In what city in the world can you get this meal delivered to your door? That is what happened today when I called my caterer/friend/neighbor, Rima @RimRam Gourmet and asked her to help me out. 

Rima, whose is a true Beiruti, specializes in many traditional dishes and cooks herself once a month at Tawlet, Kamal […]

By |March 28th, 2012|Salty|27 Comments
  • two-k-bab-3

Muhammara kebabs


There is a local restaurant here in Beirut called Kebab-ji with several outlets throughout the city; their kebabs are neatly shaped by their expert kebab-makers and come in several varieties. The photo below is of a kebab-maker from Kebab-ji shaping the kebabs for a catered party.

The kebabs today are not the traditional Lebanese ones […]

By |March 26th, 2012|Salty|19 Comments
  • le-cake-de-ma-mère

Retro cake



I guess everyone has their own personal notion of what a retro cake is. A retro cake, to me, is the one my mother used to serve when she had her girlfriends over for the purpose of playing bridge or gossiping. Personally, out of the two activities I find gossiping to be  a lot […]

By |March 24th, 2012|Sweets|20 Comments
  • soupe-au-bro-2

Green tea and broccoli soup


My mother subscribes to a French magazine, Femme Actuelle, which is always full of recipes. This is where I plucked the idea of making a broccoli soup with some green tea. Why not? Just substitute the chicken broth for the steeped green tea (minus the leaves) and that’s it!

INGREDIENTS: 6 servings

1 1/2 pounds (or […]

By |March 23rd, 2012|Salty|19 Comments
  • eating-black-rice

Black rice seafood pilaf


This is black rice; not wild rice or toasted white rice. The rice is short-grain and just as dark as can be. The Emperor of China used to love it and it was believed  to be an aphrodisiac. Apparently, he’d forbid his subjects to eat it, it was meant only for him. In any […]

By |March 21st, 2012|Salty|19 Comments
  • mysterious-veggie-or-fruit

Kema or desert truffle


For those of you who recognized it, this is indeed a desert truffle or kema. In Lebanon, these are brought over from Syria. Lina Hamdan, board member of the Lebanese Association of Gastronomy was telling me that these erupt after a storm and lots of lightning. The desert floor cracks and the truffles pop […]

By |March 18th, 2012|Tips|15 Comments
  • tartelettes-pistache

Pistachio semolina cake with cream (Mafroukeh bel-festuk)


This dessert is in celebration of St Patrick’s day in Lebanon; after all, there is an Irish contingent based here and a few (scattered) Irish folks in the country. Just met one yesterday as a matter of fact.  Notice the sugar cube? It is shaped like a shamrock. The pistachios in the dough give […]

By |March 15th, 2012|Salty|35 Comments
  • hboobieh

Wheat berry pudding (Ameh maslouk, hboubieh)


This could be considered the Levantine equivalent of oatmeal pudding, even though it is traditionally served on certain holidays such as New Year’s eve or St Barb or on the occasion of a baby’s first tooth. This version is flavored with orange blossom water only. Other versions include anise and cinnamon. 

It is of the […]

By |March 12th, 2012|Sweets|23 Comments
  • sweet-tarte-crust

Tart crust



This is the one I keep making over and over. It is easy to make in a food processor and delivers what I am looking for: sturdy yet buttery and crispy. It can be used for a tarte or bars or even plain cookies.


2 cups of all-purpose flour (265 g.)
1/2 cup of unsalted butter […]

By |March 10th, 2012|Salty|16 Comments