11 January 2005

General Recipes from Some Muslim Countries

I'll be adding more to this as I find more recipes. Most of my recipes are from cookbooks, and I can't post all of them for copyright reasons. I'd do one or two, but not 10 from each.

I highly recommend Flatbreads and Flavors and Seductions of Rice by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid, The Cooking of the Eastern Mediterranean and Mediterranean Grains and Greens by Paula Wolfert, and The Book of Jewish Food: An Odyssey from New York to Samarkand by Claudia Roden.
Mujaddarah (this is traditionally Palestinian)
1 1/2 c brown lentils
1 c rice
Salt
Pepper
Cook lentils 1.5 quarts of water for 20 minutes. Add the rice, salt, pepper, and enough water to cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. While cooking, fry strips of onion in olive oil till crisp to use as a garlic. Serve with plain yogurt, or yogurt-garlic sauce.

Falafel
1 c garbanzos
1/3 c bulgur
3 Tbsp lemon juice
2 large eggs
3 Tbsp cold water
3 cloves garlic
1/2 Tbsp cumin
1/2 tsp turmeric
Parsley
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 tsp marjoram
1/2 tsp coriander
1/8 tsp cayenne
1 tsp salt
1/2 to 1 c fresh bread crumbs
Wash garbanzos, bring to a boil in 3 cups cold water, then cover and boil 10 minutes. Turn off heat and let stand, covered, 3 hours. Soak bulgur for 20 minutes, then drain well.
Put partially-cooked garbanzos in food processor with lemon juice, eggs, water, and garlic. Finely chop, but don't puree. Put mixture in a bowl and add seasonings. Add bulgur and bread crumbs as needed to hold the mixture together. Let sit 15-30 minutes to firm up. Heat oil in a frying pan to 375 degrees. Form the mixture into 1-inch balls and fry on both sides till golden brown. Serve with tomatoes, cucumbers, tahina, hummus, and yogurt-garlic sauce.

Yogurt-garlic sauce
2 cups drained yogurt (32 oz of yogurt drained will yield two cups)
1/2 c water
2-4 cloves garlic, crushed
Salt

Combine water and yogurt till very smooth, then add garlic and salt (and lemon juice if desired) to taste. Don't add too much- the garlic shouldn't be overpowering.

Tahina
1/4 cup tahini (ground sesame seed paste- most grocery stores carry it)
3 Tbsp cold water
Salt
3 Tbsp lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
Combine tahini and water till the mixture whitens and comes together- if you keep stirring, you'll see the change. Add lemon juice, garlic, and salt to taste.

Hummus
1 can garbanzos (or 1.5 cups cooked)
2 Tbsp lemon juice
3 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 c tahini
3 cloves garlic
3 Tbsp water
Salt
Pepper (black or red)
Blend or process all ingredients till smooth, adding enough water to thin it down a little, but not have it be runny. Chill at least 4 hours, then spread on a plate, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with paprika and serve at room temperature with flatbread.


Other links:
Middle Eastern
Vegetarian
Egyptian
Persian

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