Blackberry Lavender Sugar Buns

Quiet is here. There recently were days, weeks really, of constant motion, our early July tradition in Harbor Springs. Everyone in the family comes for a long, but short, gathering that we take pleasure in knowing is there for us all year long. And then you hit this week, the week after, and it can’t…

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Lebanese Glazed Sweet Bread, Ka’ik

There are many versions of Lebanese ka’ik (or ka’ak), some biscuit-like and others bread-like. I grew up with the latter, a Lebanese glazed sweet bread which is fragrant with spices and subtly sweet. Eat the breads any time of the day: toasted for breakfast, as acompanion to a cup of tea in the afternoon, or…

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Favorite things: Wooden Molds for Lebanese Sweet Bread (Kaik)

The molded sweet is a long-standing tradition at the Lebanese table, a true and beloved trademark. Sometimes that sweet is a cookie (ma’moul), sometimes a sweet bread (kaik, KAH-ick). They are beautiful, these little works of art, their imprints like an engraved invitation to a very special party you won’t want to miss. Mine are…

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Lebanese man’oushe, za’atar flatbread

Manoushe with Za'atar,

Lebanese man’oushe is the equivalent of pizza, but slathered with a luscious za’atar+olive oil blend and traditionally eaten for breakfast. My brother Chris was the first to speak to me of the man’oushe. Every time he returned from a trip to Lebanon I wanted to sit him down and discuss, in detail, every bite of…

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Raspberry Cream Scones with Rose Water Glaze

I like to think of it as my first act of food writing. It was just a few sentences on the back of a postcard (I’ve loved postcards for a very long time), sent home to my family on my first trip to Europe when I was in college. If you were to mention just…

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Za’atar Roasted Tomato Crostini with Labne, and a Bluff view

Za'atar roasted tomatos with labneh on crostini, displayed on a cutting board, Maureen Abood

When my parents bought the house on Main Street in Harbor Springs back in the mid-‘70s, we discovered a wonderful irony: our next door neighbor was, like us, Lebanese. Latifi Huffman made us a big Lebanese dinner to celebrate our newfound, and unlikely, Lebanese connection in Harbor Springs. It was a feast that no doubt…

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Lebanese Spinach Pies, or fatayar, or whatever

Lebanese spinach pies on a blue floral plate, Maureen Abood

These little Lebanese spinach pies–or fatayar–are a beloved Lebanese treat. The dough can be tricky to keep closed during baking, but even the ones that open are, of course, delicious. I use a fantastic sticky dough recipe, rolled out and cut in circles. Fill Lebanese fatayar with spinach, meat, squash, or your own invention. You’d…

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Technique: How to roll dough for fatayar, spinach pies

Like talami dough, the dough for fatayar is different than standard bread dough. This dough is not nearly as wet as talami dough, but it is a sticky dough that takes just one rise (typically bread-baking is a two-rise process). The sticky factor is key in encouraging the little bundles, which are pinched closed, to…

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