Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Lamb Chops with White Wine & Pomegranate Sauce

Though not a traditional Arab or Middle Eastern dish because of the unorthodox use of wine, I decided to rework this original recipe (called for veal) and substitute with what I had on hand. Thankfully, the results turned out okay.

Servings: 2


1/2 lbs. lamb shoulder blade chops
salt & pepper
All-purpose flour , for dredging
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tsp. tamari sauce
1/2 c white wine
2 Tbsp. pomegranate syrup
1 tsp. fresh rosemary leaves
2 Tbsp. pomegranate seeds, for garnish (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Sprinkle lamb chops with salt & pepper and dredge both
     sides with flour.
2. Melt the butter with the olive oil in a skillet over high heat. Add the lamb chops and cook
     them on both sides for a total of 10-15 minutes. Transfer the lamb chops to an oven-proof
     plate and keep warm in the oven.
3. Add the chopped garlic, tamari sauce, white wine, pomegranate syrup and rosemary leaves
     to the skillet. Stir for 10 minutes and adjust seasonings , if needed.
4. Return lamb chops to skillet for 5 minutes, just to take the flavor of the sauce and transfer to
    them to a serving dish.
5. Garnish with the pomegranate seeds, if using. Serve immediately with rice.
Bookmark and Share

Friday, February 27, 2015

Stovetop Chicken Tagine with Dates

Serving: 2


2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into pieces
2 pinches of salt
1 c chicken stock plus more if needed
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tbsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. saffron
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1c fresh pitted dates, roughly chopped
1/3 c fresh parsley leaves (opt.)

1. To make the stove top tagine, add the olive oil to a pot over medium heat. Add the onions and
     garlic and saute until softened (about 10 minutes).
2. Add the salt, black pepper, saffron, cinnamon and ginger and stir well with the onions for about 2
    minutes, until the onions are evenly coated.
3. Add the chicken breast pieces and continue stirring till evenly coated for about 10 minutes.
4. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Lower the heat,cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
5. Add the chopped dates and parsley leaves(if using) and stir. Cover again and simmer for a further
    20-30 minutes. If chicken becomes too dry add a little more stock.
6. Remove chicken from stove top and serve with couscous.

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Lamb with Berber Spices

Servings: 6-8

For the spice rub:
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
2 garlic cloves, peeled, coarsely chopped
1 Tbsp. sea salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. fenugreek seeds
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/3 c olive oil

1 (6-7lbs.) bone-in leg of lamb

1. To make the spice rub place all ingredients together in a food processor and blend till
    evenly combined. Set aside.
2. Preheat the oven to 400F.
3. Place the leg of lamb in a well oiled pan. Trim any visible fat and discard. With the tip
    of a paring knife, make small slits throughout the lamb. Place a small spoonful of spice
    inside each slit. Rub the remaining spice paste throughout the lamb.
4. You can cook the lamb right away or you can place it in the refrigerator and let it
     marinade 4-6 hours.
5. When ready to cook,cover pan with aluminum foil, place the lamb in the oven and cook 
     cook for 4 1/2 hours. Baste with its own juices every 30 minutes.
6. After cooking, transfer lamb to a serving dish, let it rest 10 minutes before serving.

Bookmark and Share

Friday, April 12, 2013

Lamb Kebabs (Kofta)

Yield: 4 Servings


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.
Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

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

Servings: 4 Servings


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.
Bookmark and Share

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.


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.

Bookmark and Share

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.


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

Bookmark and Share