Pre-Peeled Chickpeas. A homemade hummus game-changer.

Peeled Chickpeas, Maureen Abood Market

The first time I went to the Symposium for Professional Food Writers at the Greenbrier, I walked into the grand dining room (think of the biggest chandelier you’ve ever seen, in green and black crystal) on the first night for dinner. The hostess took us, each one as we arrived, to the round tables of…

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Lebanese Cucumber & Tomato Salad with Mint

Cucumber Tomato Salad, Maureen

One of the best things about cucumber and tomato salad with mint is the juice that waits in the bottom of the bowl, ready to be sopped up with thin pita or flatbread. Make the salad an hour or so in advance to let the flavors meld. There are many great Lebanese recipes for salads,…

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Grilled Pizza with Za’atar, Tomatoes & Fresh Mozzarella

This is za’atar flatbread taken to another level! Grilled  pizza with za’atar, tomatoes and fresh mozzarella is a great summer appetizer, or make it in the oven anytime on a hot stone. There are many great things about living Up North; the natural beauty, the tranquility. Among those great things, something important is missing. Something…

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Pia’s Eggplant Parmigiana

This absolutely delicious eggplant parmesan comes to us from Italy by way of Harbor Springs! A luscious way to cook with globe eggplant. Also try Lebanese eggplant, layered in sheik al mesheh, as a dip in baba gannouj, and in traditional “boats.” One of the pleasures of living in a small town is that people…

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Za’atar Kale Chips, and a family story

Za'atar kale chips,

Za’atar kale chips are baked kale, crisped with olive oil and seasoned with a good dusting of za’atar, the Lebanese spice of wild thyme, sumac, and sesame seeds. Absolutely addictive (and healthy to boot). A family is really a collection of stories. That’s what Dave O’Leary said when he and Janet were over recently for…

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Homemade Apricot-Lime Fruit Leather

If it still to this day surprises me, it’s got to be surprising to you too: Fruit leather is so Lebanese. I was eating fruit leather long before I’d ever heard that term, and even before we were buying fruit roll-ups at Schmidt’s on Lansing’s west side way back when. The original Lebanese version of…

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