• no-w-fesenjoon

Duck in walnut and pomegranate sauce (fesenjan)

I was recently gifted a duck  from Salah, an Egyptian farmer who returned from a visit to his farm and family in Egypt carrying with him seven ducks on the airplane; he explained to me that he’d made sure they were totally frozen. His family’s farm raises ducks as well as buffaloes, from three […]

By |February 18th, 2014|Salty|13 Comments
  • bulgur-w-walnut-raisins

Bulgur pilaf (Burghol mufalfal ma’al joz)


This bulgur pilaf is a Turkish recipe from Sima Othman Yassine’s Al tabekh al-terkey. It is light, easy, versatile;  this version caught my eye because I had all of the required ingredients waiting to be used: Walnuts, green pepper, raisins and (white) coarse bulgur. 

One important point to note is bulgur has more protein and more […]

By |December 30th, 2013|Salty|4 Comments
  • a-helping-of-safsouf

Bulgur and cabbage pilaf (Safsouf)



 Today a man was offering homemade products from his village: Carob molasses, orange and rose water, tomato paste, olives, olive oil etc. When I asked him “How much” he replied “I will give it to you for free, my mother made these”. So I offered him what I thought was a great price for […]

By |January 18th, 2012|Salty|21 Comments
  • hummus-with-sage

Chickpeas with sage


I had set out to make chickpea gnocchis; I am not sure if it was the recipe (it did come from one of the best-looking French/Italian blogs out there) or my poor skills, but the fact was that this big lump of dough did not inspire me and I threw it away.

Using  sage […]

By |September 16th, 2011|Others|21 Comments
  • Baghrir1

Moroccan pancakes (Baghreer)


These Moroccan pancakes can be stuffed or eaten plain with butter and syrup or honey; they can also be stuffed, exactly like the ataîef from the previous two posts.

These pancakes, called baghreer, are made with semolina flour and all-purpose flour, some yogurt, leavening and water (no egg). They are cooked on one side […]

By |August 8th, 2011|Sweets|27 Comments
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Fish shawarma sandwich


Ever had samkeh harra?Samkeh harra is a glorious dish that is served at buffets at big parties like weddings for example; it is a large fish (loukoz, a type of sea bass), baked whole (head and tail included) and served encased in a tahini and herb sauce with a touch of red chili pepper […]

By |April 25th, 2011|Salty|33 Comments
  • muhammara-cigars-400x267

Muhammara and cheese cigars


Suppose your  friends are  coming over and you want to prepare something that you can store in the freezer and pop in the oven on the day of your dinner party?

These muhammara/cheese cigars are light, crispy, cheesy (yet not too much) and have the addictive taste of muhammara or red pepper and walnut  dip. […]

By |November 18th, 2010|Salty|47 Comments
  • potato-muhammara-400x296

Potatoes with muhammara (Batata muhammara)


Muhammara is my favorite dip; it is very rich, but so what? Eating  a rib-eye steak is a rich meal and at least here, the components are walnuts and red pepper and spices.

I have mixed muhammara with pasta.

Today, I am mixing it with a baked potato.

Come to think of it, you could have […]

By |October 18th, 2010|Salty|38 Comments
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Sweet bulgur (Smeedeh Hamra)


Rummaging through the kitchen cupboards at my parents’ house can yield interesting discoveries: I found a jar that contained  a viscous, caramel-colored paste. Can you guess what it was?

I called  the jar’s donor, Um Elias,  mountain-dweller, mother of six and seasoned farmer.

Her answer was: ” Debess el-enab, from your grapes!” i.e.


By |October 13th, 2010|Salty|35 Comments
  • apple-dumplings1

Apple dumplings


One of the most memorable desserts that I have tasted during my  years in Texas has to be apple dumpling.

It seems like this year we got blessed with an even bigger bounty of apples. I wanted  some apple dumplings, stuffed with a dollop of Lebanese fig jam studded with walnuts, sesame and redolent of […]

By |October 1st, 2010|Sweets|64 Comments