Thursday, September 20, 2007

Lebanese Feast - kib'be a'raahib

Here's the Lebanese feast I made on Saturday night. It was pretty spectacular and really full of flavour, especially the lemon soup and the mackdouse (this is the stuffed pickled eggplant you buy in a jar). As we were eating Ruby asked me how I liked it and I said "I love it, I just wish someone else had cooked it." So we'll have it again, definitely, but Richard will take it from here... Recipes & pictures below.

By the way, it's vegan.

Lebanese Lenten kib'be (kib'be a'raahib -monk's kibbe)
This is enough to feed 8 people so adjust as necessary

2x small-med brown onions, fine diced
1-2 small red chillies sliced
1 tsp Lebanese 7 spice (baharat)
1 cup finely diced pecans or walnuts
Olive oil, salt to taste
Golden sultanas optional

Sauté onions in generous quantity of olive oil until just starting to caramelize, then add chilli and spice, then pecans, fry another 2-3 minutes on med-low flame, set aside to cool.

Potato dough (for ‘crust’)
2x Med small onions
Generous handful fresh basil leaves
1/4 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp cumin
7-8 Med-small potatoes boiled, drained and cooled
4-5 cups pre-soaked and washed burghul, (brown and fine - asmar ou nayaim)
Salt to taste

Process basil and onions in food processor until v. fine dice, not watery - smooth paste, but lumpy puree!!
No large pieces allowed!!
In mixer with batter attachment, mix potatoes, burghul, spices and onion mix together to make stiff dough. If too sticky, add more burghul.

Prepare large baking pan with light ‘oiling’. Divide ‘dough’ in 1/2. Fill small bowl with water and a pinch of salt. Wet hands with this water, and flatten handfuls of dough into large pancake discs across palm, and lay,( pat) into dish. Join these up one by one like putting together patchwork quilt, until they cover the bottom of the pan about 1/2” thick. Smooth seams with damp hand. Spread with filling, then use same procedure of patching together the top ‘crust’. Smooth seams, and gently score the surface with diamond pattern, to make easier to cut. Drizzle sparingly with olive oil.

Bake in mod-hot oven until golden brown.

Serve it with lemon lentil soup, green salad, pickled eggplant (mackdouse) and radish relish.

Lemon soup

Boil one generous cup of washed lentils till tender - skim water often, add 2 med diced potatoes, boil till tender, then top off with water and lemon juice to taste. (several lemons!, or supplement with citric acid- milleh leymun)
In mortar and pestle grind 2 garlic cloves and large tablespoon fresh chopped coriander, sauté in 2 tblspns olive oil, when almost golden tip on to soup, and add 2 bunches rough sliced spinach or equivalent silverbeet, stir and simmer till wilted.
Add salt to taste and serve.

Radish relish

2 bunches radish, well cleaned
Lemon juice

Fine dice radish in small food processor bowl. Do not Puree.
Transfer to serving bowl. Pour over juice of 1 – 2 lemons, salt to taste.
Add small tablespoon to top of each kibbe slice on serving platter or on individual plates


R.H. said...

That's a lot of work, but not for you.

Marvellous. You should open a restaurant.

elsewhere said...

Wow. The soup in particular looks amazing.

Kirsty said...

That really does look very good, Meredith. I had a bit of a Lebanese food day myself today, but I'll admit I bought it from the nearby Lebanese cafe/deli. I just can't make baba ganoush taste the way they do.