Yogurt and cucumber salad

  INGREDIENTS: 1 large jar of plain yoghurt several cucumbers, 1 teaspoon of dried mint, crumbled to a powder 2 or 3 cloves of garlic, mashed up with a tad of salt or 1 teaspoon of toom (see post) METHOD: Pour the yogurt in a bowl. Beat it a few seconds...
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Lentils and rice casserole (Mujaddara)

  This dish is simple but wonderful. The Lebanese culinary lore claims that it was the dish for which Esau sold his birthright to his brother Jacob (Old Testament, book of Genesis). It is  served especially during fasting ; considered a dish for the poor, because of the absence of...
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stuffed zucchini

Stuffed zucchini in tomato sauce

If there is one dish that sums up Lebanese homestyle cooking, this is it! Humble yet delicious. It can be stuffed with meat and rice or meat only and served with a rice pilaf. I like to stuff it with the rice and meat combo, this way I can just...
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Zucchini Fritters (Ejjeh Koossa)

This is an absolutely scrumptious dish. We usually ate it the day after having the koossa mehche (stuffed zucchini in meat)  as it is made with the pulp collected after coring the zucchini for koossa. It is eaten at room temperature stuffed in pita for a quick lunch or as...
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Spinach and rice quiche

In Beirut, growing up, we used to go out for Italian food all the time; either for pizza  or at a cafe in Hamra for lasagna or escalopes milanaise. My mother’s friend who left Egypt after Nasser started nationalizing everything even opened a tiny hole-in-the wall in Hamra making fresh...
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Fig jam cookie roll

This cookie is a combination of rugelah and ma’amoul. I used a recipe from Rose Levy Beranbaum’s book Rose’sChristmas Cookies and given it a Lebanese touch by stuffing it with a traditional dried fig jam. The richness of cream cheese in the dough and fig jam and walnut in the...
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Milk Pudding (Muhallabiyeh)

I read one time the results of a study on what taste men in general were drawn to:  it was “creamy” things, like vanilla ice cream or whipping cream. The study concluded by stating that it was certainly derived for the primal longing for mother’s milk that accompanies men throughout...
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French onion soup

My son  was taunting me: “can you make a French onion soup as good as Panera’s (a chain of bakeries in Dallas)? as the French say mon sang n’a fait qu’un tour. I will make a French onion soup that will knock your socks off, said I. There!  I, who...
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Couscous (Moghrabiyeh)

  Some dishes are fit for royalty. This is one of them. I remember the anticipation of having moghrabyeh prepared for us by my dad’s favorite cousin in the mountains in the village of Maad; hers was the best and I still have her recipe that she passed on to...
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