I came back to Beirut loaded with a half-dozen squashes from the garden and started offering them away. I was surprised to be met by polite refusals. One man asked me “well, how do you prepare this?” Another looked at it looking puzzled and said “No, thank you, we have plenty of food at […]
I have had my eye on this soup for a long time, maybe years; it is the surplus of sweet (really sweet) and juicy pomegranates all over the city that was my final impetus to action.
What a discovery! This soup is probably off the charts as far as healthy ingredients, from legumes, to […]
Do you sometimes look at a recipe and think “no way”, or “it would probably taste gross”. Well, this had been my curse with cabbage soup. As much as I LOVE coleslaw, and raw cabbage salads, I could not envision cabbage soup tasting, well, decent.
I was so wrong! This is the easiest, and tastiest […]
Freekeh is an ancient grain used in the region for at least two thousand years. It is basically wheat berries picked early when still green and smoked over an open fire. Freekeh is cooked like rice and has a wonderful smoky flavor, lots of protein, minerals and iron, in short, it is a sound […]
My close friend Phoebe often jokes about how sparse my house is. One time she quipped “So, did you get rid of the beds today?”. I admit I have a tendency to get rid of things, even when it is not really warranted, it just feels cleaner.
Kind of like this soup, which is a […]
This famous soup from the county of Nice in the South of France is interpreted in a dizzying number of ways and is a traditional dish in the early Summer (or at least when basil is available). My friend Marcelle Dupuis, a native Niçoise (she speaks the local dialect), shrieked when I told her most cookbooks use […]
Mushroom soup is one of the easiest and most versatile soups. Simple (just mushrooms, onions and nothing else), creamy (with milk and cream), hearty (with meat or chicken). I wanted the soup to be creamy, hearty and filling.
Here is what I came-up with: I used a handful of fajita meat. In Beirut, fajitas […]
I wanted to try this soup, from Chef Zouhair Zairi’s Moorish Fusion Cuisine. One of the reasons is that I have not seen, to my knowledge, anything remotely like this in the Lebanese or Near Eastern cuisine; almonds are always used as a garnish in savory dishes; there is one pudding, called kishk of the […]
Keshek is a very nourishing food traditionally prepared in rural areas for sustenance year-round; it is a mixture of yogurt and milk fermented with bulgur, dried and ground into a powder. Urbanized Lebanese buy it commercially made; however, there are still plenty of people in the villages who still make it at home. It […]
This is one of the best (if not the best) kibbeh dishes; we grew up with it, with my grandmother patiently coring the hollow kibbeh balls and stirring the yogurt till thickened. The final kick of flavor was when the cilantro and garlic fried in oil was added to the sauce. In Lebanon, the […]