Recipe: Moroccan Lamb Tagine with Sweet Honey Figs

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Today I'm taking you to a special place where family and friends gather around the dinner table with happy hearts. Silverware is optional, but bread is not. Settle into this sacred space, where tagine of lamb meets chestnuts, figs, cinnamon, honey, and orange blossom water. Pause for a moment to celebrate this crazy wonderful combination, to feel the hot air blow through your hair, then dig in and scoop up the glory with a handful of bread. When you're done, cozy up to an evening of conversation … [Read more...]

Recipe: Balkan Burger (with poll)

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You don't have to know how to pronounce it to enjoy eating it. Pljeskavica. If this long, meandering string of letters makes you stutter, just clap your hands, because that's what Pljeskavica means - the sound of hands clapping as the "Balkan burger" patties are formed. And this is not just a big word. This is big food. This is the original "super-size." Not only are the patties large enough to cover a small plate, they contain as many as 6 cuts of meat from three different animals. … [Read more...]

Recipe: Micronesian Ginger & Lime Marinade

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In college I went by MacGyver. It had nothing to do with my ability to save lives (with little more than a shoestring and a balloon), and everything to do with feeding my four hungry roommates in the face of the greatest of obstacles (an empty refrigerator). I once made them lasagna without pasta or sauce. True story. Which brings me to this Micronesian marinade. There are four fantastic reasons to make it: 1. There is really no need to measure the ingredients. I have it on a local's … [Read more...]

Recipe: Ginger n’ Spice Tomato Sauce (Rougaille)

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If there is one recipe that reflects the Mauritian potluck of global flavors, this is it. Rougaille. Let's take a walk through the flavors of this unusual sauce - I have a feeling you just might make friends. First, imagine a simple, homemade tomato sauce. The deep red goodness smells sweet and fresh. This sauce can be found in homes all across the world. Tomatoes, onion, garlic. Standard fare. Until you take a bite. Then you realize, this is more complex than you could have ever known. This … [Read more...]

Recipe: Mechoui (Leg of Lamb with Dried Fruit Stuffing)

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I think I've easily quadrupled my lamb intake (for my entire life) during this Global Table Adventure ... and we're only halfway through). Wowzers. As for Keith, a.k.a. Mr Picky, he claims to have never even had lamb until this Adventure. Today we're tackling the lambiest of all lamb dishes - Mechoui, a dish enjoyed in Mauritania and nearby Morocco. Think "epic stuffed leg of lamb." This Mauritanian version includes a sweet filling made with dried fruit and rice - a perfectly addicting way to … [Read more...]

Recipe: Glorious Beef Rendang

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Beef Rendang is an art. And I could eat it every single day of my life. While there are many ways to make this flavorful curry, there are two things for certain - the dish must be slow-cooked until the flavor absorbs completely into the meat, and - secondly - the curry must explode with flavor. In a good way. The flavor part is the easiest. In fact, there are so many amazing ingredients - galangal, ginger, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves to name a few - that you can't help but make an … [Read more...]

Recipe: Pizza. Love, from Macedonia (Pastrmajlija)

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The air buzzes with excitement. Ava pats the dough and we're on our way to Macedonian pizza (Pastrmajlija), an addicting combination of diced pork, olive oil, and cracked eggs.  Together, her little hands next to my big hands, we shape the pizza two ways -first in a traditional full-moon circle and then in a Valentine's-inspired heart. While some might say the shapes taste the same, I beg to differ. Anything heart-shaped tastes infinitely better than that same … [Read more...]

Recipe: Pork Roast with Boozy Prunes

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Remember the Sunday afternoon roast? How, as it slowly sizzled and crackled in the oven, the most wonderful smell crept throughout the house until there was nowhere to hide, and you were so hungry you almost couldn't stand it? Eventually, playing outside was the only possible distraction. Even then the smell snuck out, through cracks in the wall, enticing you until you mysteriously found yourself infront of mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, just about anyone who would listen, asking "Is it ready … [Read more...]