Monday Meal Review: Libya


THE SCENE: I take off Ava's fuzzy hat and coat, give her a kiss and off she goes - into her classroom. As I turn to leave, her teacher calls after me. "What are you cooking today?" "Libya!" I exclaim, perhaps a bit to excitedly, "I'm trying their version of shortbread. They put a whole clove in them!" "Sounds great!" she smiles, and gets right back to work, helping the kids with the day's craft project. I pause for a moment to watch them work, admiring how carefully their little … [Read more...]

Recipe: Whipped Ghee Shortbread Cookies (Ghraiba)

Every day should be special. A day to use fancy napkins. A day to nibble cookies with tea. A day to smile more than you did the entire year before. This cookie is for such a day. Say hello to the ghraiba, or Libya's answer to crispy, buttery shortbread. They aren't super sweet, but they have a tender crumb, perfect for teatime. Two things make these cookies unique. First, they are made with ghee, a.k.a. cooked, clarified butter. Second, they are studded with whole cloves, which can be eaten … [Read more...]

Recipe: Stuffed and Fried Potato Wedges (Mbatan Batata)

The New Year is all about possibility, hope, health, and doing things better. That's why I'll be deep frying as the ball drops. But I'm not deep-frying just anything. This isn't the state fair (where everything from butter to kool-aid makes it into the bubbling oil). I'm in the real world. This is a Libyan dish - one that combines the best of everything - delicate potato wedges, stuffed with wonderfully spiced meat loaded up with fresh parsley, crunchy breadcrumbs and a whole lot of yum. … [Read more...]

Menu: Libya


If I can pick food up with my fingers, I will. It just... tastes better. And forget double dipping... everyone needs their own dipping bowls in my house because theirs is not safe with me. I'm a triple dipper. Heck, I'm a quadruple dipper. This week, because holiday entertaining is still going strong, and because I'm in the mood for a good dippable snack, I chose finger foods. I found that Libya has some of the best around and - as you can see by Ava's expression - … [Read more...]

About the food of Libya


I feel like I'm waking from a long walk in a deep fog. I spent this past weekend in a whirlwind of food, family, friends, and... the flu. I reached 101 on Christmas Day, which was just enough of a temperature to send me off napping for the better part of the afternoon. The interesting side effect was that I was ever more appreciative of the time I was awake and able to spend time with family. Now, as we roll back into normal life - cooking Libya - I find myself soothed by the familiar routine … [Read more...]