Menu: Qatar (w/ giveaway)

I’m telling you right now: there’s something in the air.

It’s that thing that makes me want to snuggle under the comforter and watch the leaves fall off the trees with one eye cracked and a steaming teacup nearby. There’s just one problem. It was 85F yesterday.

Here’s the deal: even though summer is being stubborn, I’m moving on. I don’t care what the weather may be – if the leaves are red, then you can find me in bed with more blankets than I really need.

Just because.

And I might have some of these Qatari treats in there with me.

Shhh, don’t tell.

All recipes and the meal review will be posted throughout the week.

Cumin Seed Potatoes | Batata b’kamun [Recipe]
Friends, this is your weeknight global fix. Simply fry up an onion with cumin, turmeric, and coriander and toss with boiled golden potatoes. An explosion of sweet, earthy spices awaits. Qatari comfort in a bowl.

Olive oil Stuffed Grape Leaves | Warak Inab [Recipe]
Headed to a potluck? This party dish can be made a day or two ahead of time. Inside each grape leaf is rice, fresh mint and parsley, green onion and tomatoes.  The entire pot is cooked on a bed of sliced potatoes, buried in chopped tomatoes, and bubbled away with nothing more than olive oil and lemon juice.

Cinnamon Buttered Dates | Al Rangina [Recipe]
A celebration of one of Qatar’s most beloved crops: impossibly sweet dates resting in a thick, cinnamon butter sauce and dusted with powdered sugar. Another great potluck dish.


We’re inching in on that time of year: furious festivity all piled into an ongoing collection of parties. Some of these parties will be ragers. Some will be quiet dinner parties. Still others will delight in cocktails and hors d’oeuvres.

To go with all this fun, I have an oh-so-adorable goody for you…

(Psst, for any fellow Whovians… no, this is not a hint that Amy Pond will be coming back to Doctor Who anytime soon. I wish.).

These Global Place Card Holders offer a unique and delightful welcome to each guest at your table by holding their name, a favorite quote or a photo by their plate. More than that, you can also use them to hold the names of globally-inspired dishes and canapés that you set out on a buffet. Huzzah! And of course, as a set, they make a very fun hostess gift as well!

Yup. To my mind, they are perfect for any gathering.

I want one of you to have them.

There are only four to a set, so I’m giving away two sets to one lucky winner.


Congratulations to Anna who says:

My favorite part of Halloween is pumpkin carving and then getting to use the extra pumpkin flesh for pie, or custard when I’m feeling too lazy to make a pie crust. This year I planted a buttercup squash plant in the garden, so if everything goes well I should be able to make buttercup squash pie too.

Please email me by 10/29/12  to claim your prize, Anna!

To Enter:

Leave a comment telling us what global goodies you’ll be making for Halloween. If you don’t celebrate, share what you think is the perfect end of October dish.

Bonus entries will be provided for those that tweet this giveaway with hashtag #globalgiveaway and/or share it on Pinterest and Facebook.

One winner will be chosen at random and announced in the Monday Meal Review on October 22 , 2012. Prize must be claimed by October 29, 2012. There are no sponsors for this giveaway. I simply wanted to share some global foodie love with you. Enjoy!


  1. dutchgirl says

    Nothing special. We don’t celebrate Halloween but Sint Maarten (November 11). The idea is the same however. Kids go singing from door to door with a lantern and try to get as much candy as they can.
    To prepare them well for this cold evening outside I’ll probably make a stew from carrots/onions/potatoes, with bacon and ‘rookworst’ (smoked sausage) on the side.

  2. Leslie Litz Ryan says

    Since there are no kiddies here, we will probably stir up some squash soup with roasted pumpkin seeds. October is our birthday month so there are already a lot of celebrations–new recipes this month include Boston Cream Pie and Chocolate Raspberry Torte. Perhaps the later birthday girl will choose a Mounds cake or a yummy spice cake with cream cheese frosting.

  3. Marina says

    I’m from Croatia, so it’s not really traditional to celebrate Halloween here, as much as I would love to ’cause I like dressing up.
    The perfect end of October dish for me…I would probably say something that has chestnuts in it, or pumpkin. Perhaps pumpkin pie, or a risotto that has roasted pumpkin cubes, along with some roasted chestnuts.
    Yeah. It’s obvious what fall produce are my favorite 🙂

  4. Kirsty says

    I knew I like you not just for the food- you’re a Whovian as well!!!
    Halloween goodies. Well, I just moved to Cameroon so we’ll see what supplies they have here! Need to find a recipe for those Candy Corns things- I just may not survive the month without them! 🙂

  5. Monique says

    Nothing too fancy – just a big warm, comforting dish of spaghetti and meatballs (with garlic bread) before taking the kids trick or treating.

  6. October seems like plum kuchen to me. Along with stews and soups. Cabbage soup made with saurkraut and sausage would be a lovely end of October dinner, with the afore-mentioned plum kuchen as dessert. Funny that the first dishes that come to mind have German influence, when I’m half-French.

  7. Heather Blazier says

    I don’t have anything special planned for Halloween but this October I’m trying to cook as much pumpkin, butternut squash and sweet potatoes as humanly possible in any and every form.

  8. I’m going to be busy on Halloween, so I won’t being doing anything then. But for sukkot last year, I made a stuffed pumpkin with rice, raisins, apple, and quince. There are probably cuisines from all over the world that appreciate a good roasted pumpkin recipe (or other assorted gourds). And one of the desserts to go with it was almond stuffed dates, so a similar dessert to the dates you’re making this week for Qatar.

  9. Stephanie says

    I love Halloween, but we usually don’t make anything special for it. And this year, we won’t even be home. I think I’ll just take the time to bake some Halloween cookies and have my 3 year old decorate them.

  10. How cute are those place card holders?! We are heading out of town Nov. 1, so Halloween is very lowkey this year. But I will whip up a batch of pumpkin barley with turkey – it is a fall favorite at our home!

  11. Allene says

    We don’t generally cook specially for Halloween, and this year we’re moving the week before so there won’t be much done, but it just occurred to me that one of my best late October dishes is one we love all year round: homemade Japanese curry with potatoes and carrots, served on rice.

  12. I live in Ecuador and here the Halloween-time treats are colada morada and guaguas de pan. Ecuadorians actually celebrate the Day of the Dead (November 2nd) instead of our Halloween. They drink colada morada (purple colada..I’m not sure if there is a translation for colada, it’s a thick drink like the famous piña colada) which is made of black corn flour and a dark fruit like blackberries. It’s sweetened with cinnamon, allspice, cloves, lemon verbena, and lemongrass. You eat it with a guagua de pan (literally “bread baby”) which is a sweet jelly-donut-like bread decorated to look like a baby. I believe bread babies were originally for honoring and remembering babies who had passed on. Now, they seem to be traded among friends and family and are special treats for godchildren.

  13. My favorite part of Halloween is pumpkin carving and then getting to use the extra pumpkin flesh for pie, or custard when I’m feeling too lazy to make a pie crust. This year I planted a buttercup squash plant in the garden, so if everything goes well I should be able to make buttercup squash pie too.

  14. Jan MacLaughlin says

    I’ve read that the tradition of carving pumpkins began in Ireland and Scotland with carved turnips, so I’ve been playing with the idea of stuffing and baking carved turnips. If I can work out the details! 🙂

    • dutchgirl says

      That’s funny! In The Netherlands they used to carve a sugarbeet to make a lantern. I did that once as a kid and it was a really tough job. I can tell you sugarbeets are very hard at the inside. My sugarbeet lantern was very heavy to carry around too, so it was a one-off experience. A year later I made my lantern of cardboard and paper again. Much lighter to carry (so I could carry more candy)!

  15. We are having a Halloween potluck at with some friends and the theme, this year, is street tacos. I said that I would be a black bean-pumpkin salsa and something else, but I haven’t decided yet. I saw some fresh mozzarella eyeballs with olive pupils that might be fun, too.

  16. simone says

    Our neighborhood comes together for a big Halloween bash and all the kids go out trick or treating together 🙂 I look forward to it… As far as food, I’ll probably bring Tiramisu again, easy to prep and usually goes fast (:

  17. Since Halloween isn’t really big in Switzerland, I think its time for some corn bread!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.