Friday, April 12, 2013

Lamb Kebabs (Kofta)

Yield: 4 Servings

Ingredients:

1 lb. ground lamb
1 1/2 c bread crumbs
a handful of fresh cilantro (coriander), finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 large yellow onion, finely chopped
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. paprika
1 Tbsp. curry powder
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground cardamom
salt & pepper
canola oil, for frying
flat bread and fresh vegetables , to serve


1. Put the minced lamb, bread crumbs,cilantro, garlic, onion, lemon juice and remaining spices in a bowl and mix till evenly combined. Add more bread crumbs or a little water if mixture does not bind well.

2. Heat a frying pan and add the canola oil.Meanwhile, shape the lamb mixture into 4 large or 8 small patties.

3. Add the lamb patties to the frying pan and cook until evenly browned on both sides.

4.Remove from pan and serve immediately with flat bread and vegetables.
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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Chicken Tagine with Preserved Lemon & Olives( Dajaj Tagine bi loomi wa zeitun)

Servings: 4 Servings

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 large yellow onion, finely chopped
4-5 chicken pieces (legs, thighs, breast)
3 garlic cloves, peeled, minced
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp.ground cinnamon
pinch of saffron threads
salt & pepper
3 c chicken stock
4 Tbsp. fresh cilantro chopped
1  preserved Moroccan lemon
2/3 c Kalamata olives

1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot.Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent.Add the chicken stock.

2. In a small bowl, add the garlic, ginger, cinnamon, saffron threads and salt and pepper and mix with a spoon until evenly combined.Add to the pot and continue cooking with the onion.

3. Add the chicken pieces and stir. Bring to a boil.Turn down the heat, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes until the chicken is tender.Add the cilantro, preserved lemons and kalamata olives and simmer for an additional 15 minutes.

4. Remove from heat and transfer chicken along with the sauce to a serving platter.Enjoy with couscous.
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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Preserved Lemons (L'Hamd Markhad)

Wandering along the souqs of Marrakesh, you'll likely come across piles or jars of glistening lemons.These beautifully displayed preserves are the cornerstone of Moroccan cuisine.Preserved lemons or l'hamd markhad as they are commonly known are an indispensable ingredient in all manner of dishes from salads to tagines, imparting a sweet yet subtly sour taste.Lemon preservation is usually done in the Spring when lemons are at their height of ripeness and sweetness.Moroccans use the smallish, thin-skinned lemons known as doqq or busera.This is a fairly easy recipe to prepare but like most pickled recipes,it takes time till its ready to be consumed.Organic Meyer or Eureka's can be used in this recipe in place of the doqq or busera.

Yield:

Ingredients:
1 glass jar with a tight fitting lid
course sea salt
Small organic Meyer or Eureka lemons or other smallish thin-skinned lemon
lemon juice of 2 lemons


Safi Mixture (Optional):
1 stick cinnamon
3 cloves
1 Tbsp. coriander seeds
1/2 Tbsp. black peppercorns



1.Cut each lemon into quarters but not all the way through.Stuff salt into the lemon then close it and place   it in the jar. Repeat.Keep pressing down the lemons with a wooden spoon until they are evenly packed  and some of their juice is released.

2. At this point, if using, add the Safi spices then the lemon juice.Sprinkle with more course salt.

3.Close jar tightly and store in a cool,dry place for 3-4 weeks.If a white film appears on top of jar, don't worry this is normal and can be rinsed off before use.


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Saturday, December 22, 2012

Pickled Garlic (Torshi Toum)

Pickling vegetables is an easy and affordable way of preserving excess produce and enjoying it year round. Pickled dishes usually make up part of the mezze meal or can be enjoyed as an accompaniment to a corresponding dish as is popular in Iraq.All manner of vegetables and fruits can be pickled.I decided start simple by pickling garlic.These can be added to meats or stews as a flavor enhancer.

Ingredients:

1 clean(12 oz) glass jar
7 heads of garlic,peeled, separated into cloves
1 1/4 c apple cider vinegar


1. Fill the glass jar with the peeled garlic cloves.Make sure to pack them tightly in the jar.

2. Pour the apple cider in the jar until it completely covers the rim of the jar.Put the lid on the jar and
     close tightly.

3. Store jar in warm spot,preferably in a sunny place like the kitchen window sill and let it sit for 3-4
     weeks.

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Friday, December 21, 2012

Moroccan Saffron Chicken Tagine

Chicken cooked with lots of onions, saffron and other Moroccan spices is easy to make and the savory foundation to a number of delicious Moroccan dishes such as Chicken Bastilla and Chicken Briouats.

You'll be tempted to eat this tender, flavorful chicken right from the pot, but it's best served on a bed of Moroccan Rice Pilaf or in Seffa Medfouna.

Yield :4 Servings
Ingredients:
1 whole chicken, cut into pieces and skin removed
1 Tbsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. white pepper
2 sticks cinammon
1 tsp.saffron threads,crumbled
1 tsp. turmeric
1 1/2 to 2 tsp. salt
1/4 c butter
1/4 c olive oil
1/4 c chopped fresh cilantro

1.Mix all ingredients in a Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot. Cover, and cook over medium to medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, for about 1 hour, or until the chicken is very tender and pulls easily off the bone. Do not add water, and be careful not to burn the chicken.

2.Reduce the liquids until they are mostly oils. Discard the cinnamon sticks, and taste for seasoning. (The sauce should be a bit salty and peppery.)

3.Serve the chicken and sauce on a bed of rice or hidden within a mound of steamed broken vermicelli or couscous (Seffa Medfouna).




Recipe & Image courtesy of Christine Belafquih,Moroccan Food Guide















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Friday, December 14, 2012

Tunisian Vegetable Salad (Salatat Khodra al Tunis)


Yield: 4 Servings

Ingredients:
3-4 Tbsp. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled, chopped into thin slices
1/2 large yellow onion,peeled, sliced and separated into "petals"
2 large tomatoes, cut into chunks
1 medium red bell pepper, ends trimmed, sliced into strips, seeded
1medium yellow bell pepper, ends trimmed, sliced into strips, seeded
1 tsp. coriander seeds
pinch of saffron
dash of salt & pepper

1. Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium-high heat.Add the garlic and onion and lightly fry 7-10 minutes.

2. Add the tomatoes and bell peppers to the pan and cook for an additional 10 minutes, stirring regularly.

3. Add the coriander seeds,saffron, salt and pepper and stir. for another 10 minutes.

4.Remove vegetables from heat.Transfer to a serving dish and serve immediately.

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Friday, December 7, 2012

Bulger Salad with Mushrooms (Burghul bi Futr)

Mushrooms aren't a very common ingredient in Middle Easter cuisine.A better substitute for this recipe would have been to use kamaa, saudi truffles but since they're not widely available,mushrooms will have to do.Baharat rounds out the flavor of this simple grain dish.

Yield:4 Servings
Ingredients:
4 Tbsp. olive oil plus more
1 small white onion, peeled, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. Baharat
1/2 lb. button mushrooms, sliced
2c water
1c bulgur


1. Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until lightly translucent(about 5 minutes).Add the salt and baharat and continue sauteing for an additional minute.

2. Add the mushrooms to the pan and continue sauteing until they begin to brown.Add more olive oil if the vegetables begin to dry out. Remove from the heat when mushrooms are completely browned.

3. Meanwhile, fill a saucepan with 2 cups of water and add the bulger.Bring to a boil.Cover.Then bring heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes or all the water is absorbed.

 4.Remove bulger from heat and add the mushroom/onion mixture.Mix together until evenly combined.

 5.Transfer to a serving dish and serve immediately.

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