In shops, as a side dish in restaurants and food chains, and in Facebook memes. We’re all victims of the Hummus-sickness. It’s delicious, healthy and, let’s be honest, addictive. That’s why we’re here to introduce you to even more delicious Libanese food, because – contrary to what some might think – Libanese and Syrian people eat many other things beside hummus and falafel. The recipes are all Lina’s, the blogger behind the lovely website ‘the Lebanese Plate’.
Click on the hyperlinks to find the full recipe on the original website!
1. Sweet and Savory bread: Ka’ik
“In Arabic these breads are known as ka’ik كعك or baa’at (as they’re sometimes called in the part of Lebanon where my parents originate from). The word ka’ik literally translates to cake, which is why in different parts of Lebanon you will find different types of things that people call ka’ik.
Now let me point out, they aren’t traditionally made as bread rolls. They are made as round flat breads (as in the image above, probably thinner), usually with a pattern pressed into it using a wooden mould.”
2. Healthy and Filling: Fattoush
“Fattoush… has to be one of the most popular salads (beside or perhaps just after tabbouli) on a Lebanese menu. It’s healthy, tangy and fresh with a perfect crunch from the addition of toasted pita bread. It’s also very easy to make and works as a great accompaniment to many meals.”
3. Nutritious combination of Lentils and Rice: Mujadara
“I must admit, growing up I never really liked this dish. Actually, if I’m going to entirely honest, I never really liked many Lebanese dishes. And it wasn’t because my Mum couldn’t cook, she could! It was more so because I (naively) thought these meals were strange. Little did I know! They may have been strange to those who weren’t familiar with them, but strange or not, I later in life realised how yummy they really were.
This particular dish, Mu’jadara, or Lentils & Rice, is one of my favourites now. It’s so quick & easy to make. And perfect for those times when you feel you need to go vegetarian!”
4. A variant on Zaatar Mana’eesh
“Zataar is the Arabic name for the herb oregano, but the term is better known for the very popular Lebanese condiment and spice mixture made from dried herbs (the vital one being oregano), sesame seeds, sumac, and other spices. This is so popular that I can assure you that no Lebanese home can be without it. It’s a pantry staple, right near the salt, sugar and in arm’s reach of the olive oil.
If you’ve been a regular follower of my Instagram feed you would see that I use it often, especially for breakfast on what we call man’ oosh (a Lebanese style breakfast pizza)”
5. Okay who are we kidding? Hummus is life. Here’s a recipe for Hummus to brighten up your day!
“Many regions around the world try and claim hummus as their own but the fact of the matter is hummus is the Arabic word for chickpeas, and although it is now globally synonymous with the dip or spread, the earliest recipe for hummus takes it right back to Ancient Egypt.
For the Lebanese, hummus has been a regular and genuine part of their kitchen for generations. There isn’t a household that doesn’t embrace it. In fact I’d be suspicious of any Lebanese restaurant that didn’t serve it!
You can buy hummus pretty much everywhere now, from corner shops to large chain supermarkets. But let’s be real. That store bought stuff (and I’ve tasted a few) are nothing but sly impostors, disguised and presented as the authentic thing.”
If you’ve tried out these recipes, let us know what you think! Sa7a, bon appétit!