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'Lawrence of Arabia' Middle Eastern Recipes and Photos

Snapper in Savory Tomato Sauce

Snapper in Savory Tomato Sauce

Snapper in Savory Tomato Sauce Pan-Fried Chickpeas Black Bean Hummus Mediterranean Meze

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  • Image © 2008 Celeste Heiter
Black Bean Hummus Dip

1 can black beans
1 bulb garlic, roasted
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon tahini paste (if available)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon corriander
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 lemon, juice only
Salt and pepper to taste
 
Fresh vegetables for dipping (carrots, celery, bell pepper, onions, cucumber, mushrooms, broccoli, cauliflower)
 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Trim the top 1/2" from the garlic bulb. Drizzle with olive oil and roast in the oven for 30 minutes. Allow to cool. Squeeze garlic pods from the bulb. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Transfer to an attractive bowl and serve with fresh vegetables and mini rice cakes for dipping.

Falafel with Tahini Dressing

There are many easy, delicious, economical, and vegan-friendly falafel mixes available at grocery markets and health food stores. However if you prefer to invest the extra time and effort to make your own, here is a simple recipe:

1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in water (do not use cooked or canned chickpeas)
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 small bunch fresh parsley (several sprigs)
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
Salt to taste
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons flour, more if needed
Vegetable oil for frying
 
Combine chickpeas, onions, garlic, and parsley in a food processor and chop until coarsely blended. Add cumin, cayenne, salt, baking powder and flour, and pulse until the mixture forms a coarse dough. Test a spoonful of the dough to see if it forms a ball, If not, more flour may be blended into the dough a tablespoonful at a time until the mixture reached the desired consistency.
 
Shape falafel dough into walnut-sized balls. Heat about 1" of oil in a skillet or saucepan. Without crowding the pan, fry falafel balls several at a time until golden brown on both sides. Drain on paper towels and serve with Tahini Dressing. Makes about 1 dozen.

Tahini Dressing
 
1 small can garbanzo beans, drained
1 tablespoon tahini paste
4 cloves garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lemon, juice only
1 small bunch fresh parsley (several sprigs)
Salt to taste

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Transfer to a dipping dish and serve with Falafel.

Snapper in Savory Tomato Sauce

4 snapper filets (about 2 pounds total)

Batter:
1/2 cup baking mix (Bisquick)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 egg
1/3 cup water
Vegetable oil for frying

Combine all batter ingredients in a shallow mixing bowl and stir to thoroughly blend. Coat fish filets with batter. Heat about 1/2 inch of oil in a large skillet. Fry battered fish filets until golden brown, turning once. Drain on paper towels and serve with sauce.

Sauce:
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
4 scallions, finely chopped
1 large tomato, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon flour
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup black olives, pitted and sliced
2 tablespoons capers

Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add garlic and scallions and saute until tender, about 1 minute. Stir in tomatoes, sprinkle with flour and stir to blend. Add white wine and lemon juice and continue stirring until thickened. Add olives and capers. Serve over fried fish filets.

Lamb Kefta Kebabs
 
2 pounds ground lamb
1 egg
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
 
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix thoroughly with your hands. Divide the mixture into 8 portions and shape into oblong patties about 5 inches long and 2 inches thick. Chill in the refrigerator until cooking time. Fire up the grill and allow the coals to burn to a glow. Remove the lamb patties from the refrigerator and slide the blade of a table knife lengthwise into the center of each patty. Using a large spatula, transfer the kebabs to the grill and cook for about 5 minutes per side, until browned and firm. To prevent crumbling while grilling, use a spatula to turn the kebabs.  Serves 4.

Spicy Tunesian Carrots


8 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon corriander
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped

Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add garlic, carrots, cumin, and corriander and saute until carrots are just tender. Stir in parsley and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Rice, Couscous & Lentil Pilav

1 tablespoon olive oil
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 onion, finely chopped
1 bell pepper, finely chopped
2 cups rice, cooked
2 cups lentils, cooked
2 cups couscous, coooked
1 cup chicken stock
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric
Salt and pepper to taste

Prepare rice, lentils and couscous according to package directions and set aside. Heat olive oil in a large wok or skillet. Add garlic, onion and bell pepper and stir-fry until tender, about 2 minutes. Add rice, lentils, and couscous and stir to blend. Stir in chicken stock, cumin, turmeric, salt and pepper. Remove from heat, cover and allow to stand for about 10 minutes, until stock is absorbed. Serves 4.

Turkish Kaygana (Yogurt Fritters in Rose Syrup)

Syrup:
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon rose water

Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Batter:
1/2 cup flour
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup yogurt

Vegetable oil for frying

Combine flour, egg, baking soda and yogurt in a small bowl and stir to form a smooth batter. Heat about 1 inch of oil in a shallow skillet. Working quickly, drop batter into the hot oil in half-teaspoon portions in small batches of 2 or 3 pieces. Fry until just golden brown on both sides, turning once. Remove fritters from oil with tongs or a slotted spoon, and drain on paper towels. Transfer fritters to a small bowl, pour rose syrup over fritters and stir gently to coat. Transfer fritters to a serving dish with tongs or a slotted spoon. Serve warm.

Published on 5/30/08

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Middle Eastern Food Recipes

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