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Sumac is mentioned a lot in this blog, because it is such an intrinsic part of Lebanese and Levantine food in general; however, I need to caution anybody who lives in the US or Canada that the sumac in your area that grows wild is (unlike the one in Lebanon and the Near East) […]

By |October 10th, 2012|Tips|13 Comments
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Sumac lemonade

The mysterious plant was indeed sumac, a Godsend for our forefathers and mothers who needed a lemony taste in their dishes but could not access lemons (either due to seasonal lack of availability or because they did not live in the coastal areas where citrus is grown). Sumac is dried and ground into a […]

By |June 28th, 2012|Drinks|31 Comments
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Mussakhan with cornish hens


I have made this Palestinian dish before using  boneless thighs or bone-in chicken pieces;  this is the first time I try it with cornish hens. The cornish hens lend themselves very well to this dish, because one hen will suffice per piece of (lavash or markouk) bread. As a result, each person will […]

By |April 13th, 2011|Salty|31 Comments
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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
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Crumble with potatoes, bacon and squash


One thing I admire about French (and American) chefs: They have no qualms taking specialties from around the world and modifying them with the utmost confidence; now I don’t know who came up with the idea of a savory crumble but I see it on French cooking sites a lot.

This is inspired by […]

By |February 28th, 2011|Salty|34 Comments
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Winter tabbouleh


After this past National Tabouleh day contest in Beirut’s souk el tayeb, where tabboulehs of all stripes were entered, including a lovely one with pink geranium petals, I thought I would introduce my version of winter tabbouleh.

Tabbouleh is the national salad of Lebanon and our pride and joy; unfortunately most often than […]

By |February 17th, 2011|Salads|38 Comments
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Carrot and parsnips salad with labneh


I saw a carrot salad on the blog délices de Turquie and knew I had to try it at once! The salad was simply shredded carrots dressed with a garlicky drained yogurt (our labneh) and a drizzle  of olive oil and sumac on top.

I added some parsnip for a coleslaw effect and made some […]

By |February 2nd, 2011|Salads|39 Comments
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Mussakhan (Palestinian chicken wrap with onions and sumac)


This dish is inspired by the classic Palestinian dish called mussakhan (pronounce moo-ssa-khann), which is Arabic for “heated up”.

A thin bread encases chicken and rings of caramelized onions fragrant with sumac.

I like to use a Lebanese flatbread called markook for this dish, although a large pita (or several small ones) will do just fine […]

By |December 14th, 2010|Salty|49 Comments
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Fried Eggs with eggplants, pomegranate and sumac


If there was one fruit that I have been eagerly waiting all summer, it is the pomegranate. There are  two varieties in the orchard, one which is  sweet and suitable for eating;  the other  is sour, only suitable for molasses.

The good news is Beirut is stuffed with juice shops and you can order a […]

By |October 15th, 2010|Salty|12 Comments
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Red Lentils with quince and caramelized onions


Certain events only happen in Lebanon.

Case in point:

Yesterday, the ministry of interior authorized a local company to shut down a major bridge connecting Beirut to a big suburb, for the sake of running a  fashion runway show, causing hours and hours of logged traffic jams.

So while people were in their cars wasting […]

By |September 29th, 2010|Salty|38 Comments