Olive Oil Baklawa with Pistachios

Pistachio baklawa made with olive oil, cut in pieces in the pan

Olive oil baklawa is a fabulous alternative to classic baklawa, or baklava — the Mediterranean pastry traditionally drenched in butter and flower water syrup. How exciting to have a vegan baklawa (vegan baklava) option that tastes so very good! I won’t say that olive oil baklawa tastes exactly the same as if you’ve made your…

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Hummus with Olives, Pine Nuts and Olive Oil Crostini

Hummus with olives, pine nuts, and crostini

 Hummus with olives, pine nuts, and crostini make for a beautiful, holiday-worthy appetizer. Healthy and luscious and lovely, all in one! Get out the good china! Hummus is rightly an everyday or at least an every-week food. And sometimes the everyday gets (rightly) set aside for the special times, the feasts, the celebrations. But smooth…

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Blondie Bars with Caramel

Blondie bars with orange blossom caramel

This favorite recipe for blondie bars with caramel originates with Claire Ptak’s The Violet Bakery Cookbook. I’ve added orange blossom water, which is such a good friend of caramel, and tahini, a good friend of most everything! These bars will become your go-to for picnics, potlucks, and parties of any kind… Couple of months ago,…

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Lebanese Sfouf Cake

Lebanese Sfouf cake with turmeric

Lebanese sfouf cake is a very simple, oil-based yellow cake, given its technicolor with turmeric–sfouf is beloved by the Lebanese, to enjoy with coffee or tea (not, at least according this dessert-eater, for dessert…). Sfouf cake includes a short list of ingredients and is egg-free.  The most typical, classic of Lebanese cakes seem to include…

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Chocolate Tahini Breakfast Rolls

Chocolate Tahini Breakfast Rolls in a beautiful white baking dish

Chocolate tahini breakfast rolls are like the rich, gorgeous cousin of a cinnamon roll. Butter enriches both the chocolately filling and the soft, pull-apartable dough. Yes, you can make these ahead and refrigerate the dough before the second rise, then bake them off like a champ morning of.  It makes sense, I think, to rate…

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Pomegranate Glazed Leg of Lamb

Pomegranate glazed leg of lamb

Pomegranate glazed leg of lamb gets its tremendous flavor from a short marinade, then a glaze of sweet-tart pomegranate molasses toward the end of roasting. This lamb recipe is absolutely made for special occasions like Easter. The pomegranate glaze lends a glisten to the lamb, worthy of carving at the table for all to see.…

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Almond Graybeh

Almond graybeh on a sheet pan

Almond graybeh is a classic Lebanese butter cookie that is delicate, light, and pure white. Almond graybeh is baked especially for Easter and Christmas. The recipe makes so many cookies (4 dozen!) that it’s perfect for weddings, graduation parties, or anytime you want lots of incredibly delicious cookies to share. I’ve always been a huge…

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Date-filled Ka’ik

Date filled molded kaik cookies

There are many versions of Lebanese ka’ik (or ka’ak), some biscuit-like and others bread-like. This spiced, glazed sweet bread version is filled with dates and pressed for a beautiful imprint on top. Find the molds at Maureen Abood Market. As I was noting recently, the scent of what’s cooking in the kitchen has a powerful…

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Raspberry Rose Marshmallows

Raspberry Rose Marshmallows are the thing homemade marshmallow dreams are made of…soft, gently sweet, beautiful to make and eat. These get layers of flavor with LorAnn Oils raspberry extract and freeze-dried raspberries, a flavor that pairs perfectly with rose water. It is not a secret over here that I was not a great eater when…

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Zalabia, Glazed Lebanese Donuts

Lebanese donuts on a rack with syrup glaze

These traditional Lebanese zalabia donuts are made with a yeasted dough, spiced with anise and cinnamon and glazed with flower water syrup. Zalabia donuts are made by Christian Lebanese to celebrate the feast of the Epiphany in January, but we love them whenever we want homemade donuts. We also make zalabia with “leftover” dough on…

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