Avocado Tabbouleh, the original chopped salad!

Tabbouleh in lettuce cups

I call my Avocado Tabbouleh Salad the original chopped salad because it’s all about the finely chopped herbs and vegetables. A simple lemon vinaigrette lets all of the flavors shine. The truth of tabbouleh is this: it’s a labor-of-love salad. A salad whose basis is fresh herbs could be nothing but, when you consider how…

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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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Favorite Things: Enameled Cast Iron cookware

They’re big. They’re heavy. And they’re beautiful. But above all, enameled cast iron pots are a pleasure to cook with. That’s because of the heat-retaining properties of the cast iron, and the enamel that forms a non-stick style coating. Cast iron has been used since Pa and Ma cooked over the fire on Little House…

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Ingredient: Pita Bread

I don’t know that I have adequately stressed one critical essential to the Lebanese style of eating: whether it’s kibbeh, tabbouleh, hummus or just olives and labne on your plate, the thin, soft piece of bread in hand to scoop up your bite is just as important to making the party in your mouth as…

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Taking stock (chicken, that is)

When I stepped through the doors of Tante Marie’s Cooking School to begin the full-time culinary program in the fall of 2010, I wasn’t sure what to expect. The first order of business was to suit up. That meant changing from street clothes into black and white checkered pants, white chef’s coat, white apron, and…

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Mmmm Mmmm Mujadara, Lebanese lentil pilaf

This classic and beloved Lebanese Mujadara pilaf is made with lentils, caramelized onions, and rice or coarse bulgur. It’s both vegetarian and vegan. Mujadara is ultra-healthy, and is delicious topped with labneh (Greek yogurt), a fried or poached egg, arugula or watercress salad, or anything you come up with. Get the right lentils and bulgur…

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Technique: How to dice an onion

What more gracious gift has the table been given than the onion? It seemed as though I was seeing onions for the first time in all of their gorgeous splendor when I saw them through the camera lens this week. Onions are perhaps the most ironic of all foods, and that may be why I…

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Ingredient: Lentils

We ended the year in the warm, buttery blessing of baklawa. And we have no regrets. But we’ll start the New Year in the healthy, earthy, yet delectable land of lentils, which are eaten with frequency in many ethnic cuisines, particularly that of the Lebanese. The lentil is a pretty little pulse that grows in…

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Lebanese Baklawa Recipe. Do you hear what I hear?

Lebanese Baklawa diamonds, Maureen Abood

My Lebanese baklawa recipe gives you step-by-step instructions so you can enjoy baking and eating this beautiful classic pastry. Lebanese baklawa is buttery, crisp layers of phyllo filled with nuts and drenched in flower water syrup. Once you get the hang of the many parts involved, it’s a wonderful and not-difficult addition to your baking…

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