snack

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Popcorn cake

It is amazing how homesickness manifests itself by reaching out for certain foods; both my daughter and I have our popcorn cravings and she also managed to single out the best Lebanese brand for peanut butter. She was doubtful first when I told her of my idea; after all, popcorn is supposed to be […]

By |March 28th, 2014|Sweets|12 Comments
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Pumpkin jam cubes (Mrabba etta’ al-yakteen)

This pumpkin jam reminds me of my grandmother, Nabiha Aftimos, who lived in a world that had not succumbed to speed obsession, cell phone dependency or internet. Whatever she made in the kitchen took time, and it was fine and natural by her. She used to make these types of sweets with bitter orange peels or […]

By |January 4th, 2014|Sweets|19 Comments
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Abbas cookies (Kaak al-Abbas)

I have a new-found appreciation for traditions lately; probably because I grew up in a family who pooh-poohed all manner of traditions (or at least my mother did). I asked around Malak and Hossein and other friends and acquaintances what is traditional for the commemoration of Ashura; first of all, huge vats of a […]

By |November 14th, 2013|Sweets|19 Comments
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Roasted wheat berries

Ms. M. Khairallah is a lady in her eighties living alone in her family’s ancestral home in the village of Ghineh in the Lebanese mountains. Her memories of the olden days is crisp and clear; she recounts how back then every family had a small plot and was growing wheat to sustain them throughout […]

By |August 14th, 2013|Salty|8 Comments
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Molasses no-bake cookies

 

These cookies (which have the texture of a soft taffy and the taste of toffee) are made with a technique that has always intrigued me; they are very traditional and come from rural areas. Folks lived a very simple (primitive) life, without oven or any appliances. I have seen similar recipes across the Middle-East, […]

By |July 4th, 2013|Sweets|18 Comments
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Dried fruit balls

I am not sure how or why it happened, but I suddenly found my fridge,  freezer and cupboard  bursting with packages of dried fruits and nuts. These are the solution; made in minutes and perfect for a breakfast on-the-go or a case of the munchies at eleven PM. INGREDIENTS:

2  cups assorted dried fruits ( […]

By |May 9th, 2013|Sweets|17 Comments
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Zaatar and cheese plate

 

I posted an image of my foray into zaatar hunting and both Arlette and Dana mentioned the zaatar and feta cheese combo. Feta (aka Bulgarian cheese here) is crumbled, doused in olive oil and sprinkled with fresh zaatar; a breakfast and after-school snack that helped assuage my hunger daily as a child growing up […]

By |May 4th, 2013|Salty|15 Comments
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Hazelnut chocolate spread

When I was slathering my baguette with Nutella years ago while living in France I never dreamt that this food would become so popular in the US. In Lebanon  every corner market carries Nutella. I guess it is the most popular food Italy has exported in the sweets category. 

I was in the mood to […]

By |March 8th, 2013|Sweets|15 Comments
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Myrtle berries (hemblass)

 

These berries are liked by a lot of folks here. The berries are munched on raw. 

Here is the link to find out what they are exactly (thanks Bassem!).

Now that the weather is finally cool and the air crisp and clean, hunting season has arrived; this is a predicament because in the Lebanese mountains folks are hunting for […]

By |November 25th, 2012|Tips|10 Comments
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Popcorn balls in chocolate-caramel

 

This is for the child lurking inside of us. Halloween parties, Christmas parties, any party, or just a movie night planned for Friday would be the occasion to indulge in these. You can make them without fear if you own a candy thermometer and save time by using microwave popcorn.

INGREDIENTS: Serves 12

1 bag of […]

By |November 5th, 2012|Sweets|8 Comments