Salted Caramel Ice Cream with Orange Blossom

The ultimate ice cream! This recipe for Salted Caramel Ice Cream is adapted from my favorite ice cream book, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home. My ice cream maker of choice is this one. The base is made without eggs, but uses cream cheese for flavor and texture. Making the caramel takes close attention; read…

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Farewell Lebanon, until we meet again.

We were remote, in the mountains, paying homage to our adored Lebanese saint, Charbel. It was a haunting place, creaking with wind and chill and a kind of desolation. I prayed for all of us. As I left, the branches of a tree waved and beckoned me over from across the courtyard. Are you my…

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Postcard from Lebanon

The Lebanese love the water. Might explain what brought us to Michigan. Can you smell the roses and herbs? It was so aromatic, I hope it wafts in for you. Hallab pastry shop. Need I say more? Beirut beckons.

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Postcard from Lebanon

Beirut at night. A cab driver said today of Beirut: it is most beautiful at night. Other cafes were full. This one was not. Manoushe is my new favorite food. We’ll make some, I promise. More importantly, these are my dear, new-found cousins (more, much more, to come about that). A hazy but beautiful view…

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Fattoush salad, and poetry, in motion

It wasn’t long after I started working, after graduate school studying poetry and literature, that I started to feel the gnaw. Working was great, a paycheck was even greater. But I wasn’t writing much—just a couple of correspondences that took on terrific significance for me, or my journal, which was so stream of consciousness that…

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Ingredient: Lemons

We are salivating over lemons this week not just because they naturally make our mouths water, and not just because they are the perfect shade of yellow to accompany us into spring and Easter, but also because lemons are one of the most essential flavors in Lebanese cuisine. What would my mother’s salata, or salad,…

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Grilled Lamb Lollipops with Fresh Mint Sauce; Chine on…

For me to present to you a perfectly procured, grilled, and sauced rack of lamb strikes me as a decent feat, given the lamb drama I have experienced over the years. Lamb failed me most humbly when my sister and I were hosting a dinner for a dear—and prominent—friend. We planned that menu right down…

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Ingredient: Lamb

It is true that for the most part, my family has replaced lamb with beef in many Lebanese dishes, especially kibbeh. But when special occasions bring us to the table together, it is the traditional Lebanese love of lamb that prevails. Easter at our house just wouldn’t be Easter without a symbolic, succulent platter of…

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Ingredient: Dates

It’s official. We are halfway through Lent, which for me means I’m that much closer to having my sweets again. I hope that the drastic fasting from refined sugar is going to gain me some heaven-points, but probably all of my crying about it is negating any positive effects I would have otherwise gained. Just…

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