Technique Thursday: Fruit Leather

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Let's just get something out in the open. Fruit Roll-ups are no good. They've got corn syrup and hydrogenated oil in them. Take it from me, life is much better if you make the nummy sweet snacks yourself! And I have good news - it's easy. But you have to promise not to call them Fruit Roll-ups. The proper term for the homemade goodness is fruit leather. Sounds so much more John Wayne, don't you think? The Basics: 1) Puree Fruit with seasonings and water. (Make the texture like … [Read more...]

Menu: Bahrain

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In the traditional recipes I've oggled, Bahraini fuse Middle Eastern cuisine with spices from India. Sounds great to me! I'm always dragging my husband to both sorts of restaurants. How great that I'll be able to eat both in one bite. I'm particularly looking forward to trying the variation on rice pilaf. Roasted Eggplant Dip (Uukkous Al-Badinjan) [Recipe] A tantalizing blend of roasted eggplant, garlic, olive oil, chili pepper, paprika, lemon juice, and parsley. This reminds me of a … [Read more...]

About the food of Bahrain

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NOTE: In the time it took me to write this post the temperature dropped ten degrees and fits of rain sporadically fell on Tulsa. Although cold, rainy days are perfect for writing, I couldn't help but think "Bah, rain." (I'm working on my mom humor, what do you think?) All 700 square km of the island Kingdom of Bahrain is in the Persian Gulf. Bahrain is made up of many islands (some sources say 33, others say 40). The name means "two waters" and refers to the country's water … [Read more...]

Recipe: Azerbaijani Grilled, Ground Lamb (Lyulya Kabob)

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Serves 6-8 These spicy kabobs are wonderful for lunch or a light dinner. The cayenne provides medium heat, add up to a 1/2 tsp more to make them very spicy. Ingredients: 1 3/4 lbs ground lamb 2 medium onions, grated 4 cloves garlic, crushed 1 tsp ground cumin 2 tsp dried mint 1/4 cup chopped, fresh parsley 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper 1 1/2 tsp salt 1 tsp pepper 1 tsp paprika Optional Accompaniments: Lavash flatbread Pita Bread Sliced red onion sliced tomatoes fresh sprigs … [Read more...]

Menu: Azerbaijan

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The Azerbaijani table is commonly adorned with flatbread, yogurt, sumac, and fresh herbs. This is because diners scoop meat dishes up into either lavash or pita bread and then top them with these regional "condiments."  Although a month late, we're celebrating the spirit of the Azerbaijani holiday "Novruz" by gardening and spring cleaning before our feast. Sides & Condiments: Pita Bread, fresh mint and other herbs, sliced red onion, sumac, and yogurt Rice Pilaf with Potato Kazmag … [Read more...]

Recipe: Armenian Bulgur Pilaf Salad (Itch)

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Serves 8 This colorful salad reminds me of tabouli. The orange hue comes from the pureed tomatoes. Serve at room temperature with grilled chicken or lamb. Ingredients: 1, 15 ounce can diced plum tomatoes 1/2 cup olive oil 2 cups chopped onion 2 cups bulgur 1/4 cup lemon juice salt pepper 1 small jalapeno, minced 1 large red bell pepper, diced 1 large red onion, diced 8 scallions, sliced 1/2 cup fresh chopped parsley 1-2 cups very hot water (add as … [Read more...]

Recipe: Armenian Stuffed Grape Leaves (Yalanchi Sarma)

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Serves 4-8 (makes 20) This is a delicious variation on traditional stuffed grape leaves we see in supermarket salad bars. The Armenians make stuffed grape leaves without an intense vinegar brine. Instead, earthy cinnamon and currants carry the flavor. Just wonderful! Ingredients: 1 16 oz jar grape leaves 6 Tbsp olive oil 1 onion, diced (about a cup) 1/2 cup basmati rice 2 Tbsp tomato paste 3 Tbsp dried currants 1 Tbsp lemon juice 3/4 cup water salt 1/4 cup pine nuts 1/2 tsp … [Read more...]

Recipe: Armenian Hazelnut Cake in Honey Syrup (Revani)

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Serves 8 This dense cake has a muffin like texture. Depending on how coarse you grind the nuts, you can experience quite a bit of "crunch."  Serve chilled or room temperature with vanilla ice cream. Ingredients: For syrup: 1 cup water 3/4 cup sugar 2 Tbsp honey 2 pieces cinnamon stick 2 lemon slices 3 Tbsp brandy For Cake: 4 large eggs, separated 1/2 cup sugar 3 Tbsp vegetable oil 1/4 cup greek yogurt 1 cup flour 1 1/2 cups toasted, skinned, ground hazelnuts (you … [Read more...]