Simple Kabsa | Saudi Arabian Fragrant Rice
Kabsa, the National dish of Saudi Arabia, is quite the humble dish. Each home making it their own, with various methods.. but the most common, daily dish is a very simple one -pot dish. Check out my other popular Kabsa recipe, which has more steps involved and used for more special occasions. For your daily meal however, I am sharing this favorite family method.
Harissa | North African Spice Paste
Harissa is a North African spice paste, a condiment found everywhere in Morocco and Tunisia. It is also widely used in the Middle East. Popularly used in dips and marinades and can add a spicy kick to just about anything! In mayonnaise, hummus, burgers… the list goes on.
Although there are variations to Harissa, according to region, it is basically a red chilli paste. Fresh chillies or peppers may be roasted and used as well. The type I prefer however, uses only dried, rehydrated chillies. Since not all varieties of dried chillies are available everywhere, I recommend using your favorite. New Mexico and guaijillo chilies are good options. I love these long and mild dried chillies, that I use in most of my cooking. It’s the slightly crinkled type as opposed to those deep red shiny dried chillies. Harissa, made with these smells great too!
Keema Samosa | Mince Meat Sambousek
This a my favorite Keema Samosa Recipe! Quite easy to make, just takes some time, peeling the samosa pastry and filling them. I like to toss the wok and get some flaming action in there to get a deliciously smoky flavor! Trust me you will love these. I will post my home made samosa wrapper recipe soon, but samosa pastry is available in most good supermarkets.
Ruz Bukhari | Middle Eastern Bukhari Rice
Bukhari Rice is a very simple but delicious rice which is popular in the Middle East. Especially the Gulf Countries. The name ‘Bukhari’ denotes that it comes from ‘Bukhara’ , a formerly prominent point on the fabled Silk Road, and has long been the centre of much trade, culture, scholarship and religion. The The region of Bukhara long formed part of the Persian Empire too. The Ruz Bukhara, in my opinion is one of the easiest rice dishes from the Region, which includes, Mandi, Kabsa, Mambos etc.
Dawood Basha | Lebanese Meatballs in Tomato Sauce Served with Saffron Rice
Dawood Basha or Lebanese Style Meatballs with Pine Seeds in a Simple Tomato Sauce. These meatballs, are tender, with a melt in mouth quality. Dawood Basha was the first Governor appointed by the Ottoman Empire. These meatballs were perhaps his favorite. They are very famous, served over rice. My love for Lebanese food, started early on in life. The food is generous, warm and inviting.
Traditionally, these meatballs are cooked in sheep tail fat, but ghee is a practical substitute. Served with a Simple Saffron Scented Rice, this makes for a very easy to prepare and comforting meal.
Sure sometimes, eating at a fancy restaurant is fun and offers great ambience. But don’t we all have our favorite snappy street foods, that we crave for much more often? Those who know me well, know that I absolutely love Shawarma! These lebanese wraps just make me deliriously happy and I can not explain why! My favorite of course, is the Chicken Shawarma but when I am in the mood for a heavier wrap, I will always opt for the Beef Shawarma. Ofcourse, you can’t beat the taste of the huge meat skewers that get shaved off as the outside gets grilled to perfection. However, did you know you can replicate this taste at home using a skillet or thick bottomed non stick pan? I follow my Home made Beef Shawarma Recipe and it comes out delicious every time! I also have recipes for Khubz(with Video) and Arabic Pickle(Mukhalal) , if you’s like to make everything from scratch.
Labneh Dip – Delicious Middle Eastern Dip
Yoghurt is called ‘Laban’ in the Middle East. ‘Labneh’ is this delicious, creamy dip which is made by hanging or straining the yoghurt to get it thickened to the consistency of cream cheese.
Although the prepared ‘Labneh’ can be eaten (plain) as it is with Arabic Bread, converting it into this creamy dip takes it to another level of deliciousness.
This Labneh Dip is so addictive, with the fresh sprinkling of herbs and spices and the luscious drizzle of olive oil. Perfect to mop up with a warm slice of Arabic Pita Bread! A regular item in the Middle Eastern Appetizers List or Mezze.
Goats Milk Yoghurt is best for making Labneh, but I make it with my Homemade Yoghurt (using Cows milk)
Za’atar Spice Recipe
Za’atar is the generic name given to the set of herbs that belong to the Genera Origanum. These are Oregano, Thyme, Basil Thyme and Savory. Za’atar is also the name for the spice/ condiment made from a mixture of these herbs with sumac and sesame seeds. It is very popular in Arab Cuisine. I love it on flatbreads and in dips like Labneh Dip. Here’s the Za’atar Spice Recipe so that you can prepare this handy spice mix at home!
Mutton Mandi Rice – Arabian Fragrant Rice
Mandi is very popular in Yemen and Saudi Arabia as well as other Arab Countries. Very similar to Kabsa, the main difference is the method of preparation. Mandi rice is traditionally cooked very slowly over a long time. The rice, spices and water are cooked together in special underground clay ovens(Taboon).The oven is sealed and live hot coals are used for cooking.The word ‘Mandi’ comes from the Arab Word ‘Nada’ , meaning ‘Dew’ and reflects upon the dewy or moist nature of the cooked meat. At home several methods give the same delicious taste. Also check out out Chicken Mandi Recipe.
This recipe gives you a Deliciously Aromatic Arabian Rice. Mutton Mandi Rice, is perfectly cooked, moist rice with the most tender mutton. Everyone loves this rice.This version is cooked using a pressure cooker. Make sure you use only top quality MUTTON. The mutton is partially cooked with just some simple spice and salt. It is then cooked with a reduced mixture of onion, garlic, ginger and tomato puree. A special mani spice blend is added along with the dried lime that lends a signature accent to the dish.
Key is to balance the level of tenderness of meat with that of the rice. This is why I like to partially cook the mutton before hand. This ensures perfect Mandi every time. Try out Mandi Recipe!
Middle Eastern Pizza – With Mince and Baharat Spice – Vegetarian Version Included
My Middle Eastern Pizza – is different. It is ‘Middle East’ inspired and uses ‘Baharat’ Spice. I usually make it using minced meat but I use only vegetables when I’m going vegetarian. So you can take your pick. It’s an awesome recipe that I am sharing today.