• Shakshuka

    Recipe from Amanda Arafat and Honeycomb Kitchen.

    Ingredients:

    • 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 1 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
    • 4 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 tsp. cumin
    • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
    • 1/2 tsp. chili flakes
    • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
    • 2 tsp. tomato paste
    • 1 large red bell pepper, diced
    • 4 medium-large tomatoes, diced
    • 4-5 eggs
    • 1/4 block feta, crumbled
    • Parsley, roughly chopped
    • Mint, roughly chopped

    Directions:

    1. In a large skillet heat 1 TBSP olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the diced onion and salt and saute for 2-3 minutes. Next add garlic and saute for 2 more minutes.
    2. Add cumin through tomato paste and saute for 2 minutes; then add the remaining 1 TBSP olive oil.
    3. Next, add the diced bell pepper and saute for 2 minutes, stirring to combine with the garlic and onion; then add the diced tomatoes and raise the heat to medium-high. Stir the tomatoes occasionally until the mix reaches a vigorous simmer, and at that point cover the pan and lower the heat to medium. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching and periodically using a wooden spoon to crush the tomatoes, creating a saucier texture.
    4. After 15 minutes, remove the skillet from the heat and uncover. Using the back of a wooden spoon, smash the tomatoes for 1-2 minutes to improve the texture of the sauce. Return the skillet to medium heat, uncovered, and simmer for 5 minutes.
    5. After simmering, remove the skillet from the heat and create 4-5 divots of the surface of the sauce, making sure they are large enough for an egg to nestle into. Working with one egg at a time, crack the eggs first into a cup and then use the cup to gently drop the eggs into the divots. Cover the skillet, and return to medium heat and cook for 5 minutes, just until the egg whites are set. Remove from heat.
    6. Garnish with feta, parsley, and chopped mint.

    Shakshuka:

  • Moroccan Quinoa and Chickpea Salad

    Recipe adapted from Two Spoons.

    Ingredients:

    Salad:

    • 2/3 c. quinoa
    • 1 1/3 c. water
    • 1/2 c. almonds chopped and toasted
    • 1 shallot small, diced
    • 2 carrots, shaved into ribbons
    • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    • 3 c. arugula 
    • 1/2 c. mint tightly packed and chopped
    • 8 or more dried apricots, chopped

    Moroccan Salad Dressing:

    • 1/4 c. + 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 2 TBSP lemon juice
    • 2 TBSP orange juice
    • 1 TBSP honey, plus more to taste
    • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp. ginger
    • 1/2 tsp. cumin
    • 1/2 tsp. coriander
    • 1/4 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
    • Pinch chili flakes

    Directions:

    1. Quinoa: In a saucepan combine quinoa and water. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce to simmer and cook quinoa for 12-15 minutes. Fluff with a spoon and cover with tea towel. Let cool.
    2. Toasted Almonds: Toast almonds in a skillet on medium heat, stirring often until fragrant and golden browned (approx. 8-10 mins). Remove from heat.
    3. Moroccan Salad Dressing: Prepare dressing in a small bowl by whisking together oil, lemon juice, orange juice, honey, cinnamon, ginger, cumin, coriander, salt, and red pepper flakes.
    4. Assemble Salad: In a large mixing bowl combine quinoa, diced shallots, carrots, chickpeas, arugula, chopped mint, dried apricots, and toasted almonds. Add the dressing and toss to combine.

    Moroccan Quinoa and Chickpea Salad:

  • Middle Eastern Rice (Mejadra)

    Recipe adapted from Recipe Tin Eats.

    Ingredients:

    • 3-4 onions, thinly sliced
    • 1/4 c. olive oil + 2 TBSP olive oil
    • Salt, to taste
    • 2 tsp. cumin seeds (or 1 tsp. ground cumin)
    • 1 1/2 TBSP coriander seeds (or 1 1/2 tsp. ground coriander)
    • 1 c. basmati or long grain rice, uncooked
    • 1 1/2 c. water 
    • 14 oz. canned brown lentils, drained
    • 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
    • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
    • 1 tsp. sugar
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • Black pepper
    • Serve with a Mediterranean salad: cucumbers, tomatoes, red onion, feta cheese, olives, etc. with Garlic Expressions dressing

    Directions:

    1. Caramelize Onions: Heat up to 1/4 c. of olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat; then add the onions and saute until caramelized. Add more olive oil, if necessary. Once caramelized, season with salt, to taste. Remove onions from saute pan.
    2. Rice: In the saucepan over medium heat, add the 2 TBSP of olive oil, cumin seeds, and coriander and cook for a couple of minutes until the spices are fragrant; then add the rice and stir to coat with the oil and spices; then add the water and lentils.
    3. When it comes to boil, add the turmeric, cinnamon, sugar, salt, and pepper; and then turn the heat down to medium-low, cover with lid and let cook for 10 to 12 minutes, or until all the liquid has mostly been absorbed.
    4. Remove from heat and let it rest for 10 minutes – during this time, any residual liquid will absorb.
    5. Fluff rice with a fork and adjust the seasoning with more salt if you wish. Add the caramelized onions and toss to combine.

    Middle Eastern Rice (Mejadra):

  • Falafel Patties with Mediterranean Salad

    Ingredients:

    Falafel Patties:

    • 1 ½ c. fresh cilantro leaves and stems
    • 1/2 onion, chopped
    • 1½ tsp. ground coriander
    • 1 tsp. ground cumin
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
    • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
    • 1 large egg
    • 2 (15-oz.) cans chickpeas, rinsed and patted dry
    • 1/4 c. flour
    • 3 TBSP olive oil
    • Serve over quinoa, top with Mediterranean Salad and tzatziki

    Mediterranean Salad:

    • 1/4 c. fresh mint, chopped
    • 3 TBSP olive oil
    • 3 TBSP lemon juice
    • 1 TBSP plain Greek yogurt
    • 1 TBSP honey
    • 2-3 mini cucumbers, chopped
    • 1 c. cherry tomatoes, halved
    • 1/4 red onion, minced
    • Salt, to taste
    • Kalamata olives, to taste

    Directions:

    1. Mediterranean Salad: Whisk mint, oil, lemon juice, yogurt, and honey together in medium bowl. Add cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion and gently toss to coat. Taste and add salt, if desired. Sprinkle with olives and refrigerate until needed.
    2. Falafel Patties: Process cilantro, onion, coriander, cumin, salt, baking powder, and cayenne in food processor for 5 seconds. Scrape down sides of bowl. Continue to process until mixture resembles pesto, about 5 seconds longer. Add egg and process for 5 seconds. Add chickpeas and pulse 4 times. Scrape down sides of bowl. Continue to pulse until chickpeas are coarsely chopped, about 4 more pulses.
    3. Transfer mixture to large bowl. Add flour and, using rubber spatula, mix until fully incorporated. Spray rimmed baking sheet with vegetable oil spray. Using ½ c. measure, drop 6 even portions (about scant ½ c. each) onto prepared sheet and gently shape into patties about 3-inches in diameter.
    4. Line cutting board with single layer of paper towels. Heat oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Using thin spatula, transfer patties to skillet. Cook for 4 minutes, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and continue to cook for 4-5 minutes. Remove the cover and flip the patties over to brown the other side and reach 185F internal temperature.
    5. Transfer patties to prepared board. Serve over quinoa and top with Mediterranean Salad and tzatziki.

    Falafel Patties and Mediterranean Salad:

  • Falafel Quinoa Salad

    Recipe adapted from Plays Well With Butter.

    Ingredients:

    • 1 1/2 c. – 3 c. cooked quinoa
    • 14 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    • 1 small red onion, diced
    • 1 1/2 c. Persian cucumbers, diced)
    • 1 1/2 c. cherry tomatoes, halved
    • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
    • 1 bunch parsley, chopped
    • 1/2 c. mint, chopped
    • Crumbled feta
    • Salad greens, optional

    Lemon-Cumin Dressing:

    • 5 TBSP olive oil
    • 2 lemons, zested and juiced (5 TBSP juice)
    • 3 garlic cloves, grated
    • 1 tsp. cumin
    • 1 tsp. coriander
    • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
    • Honey, to taste

    Directions:

    1. Prepare the the lemon-cumin dressing: Add all listed ingredients to a small bowl or jar. Whisk or shake to combine. Set aside, or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
    2. Prepare Quinoa: Cook according to package or using an Instant Pot — rinse the quinoa; spray the Instant Pot liner with cooking spray; add the rinsed quinoa; add the water (1:1.5 quinoa to water ratio); place lid on and cook for 2 minutes, and then allow a 10 minute natural release; remove lid and fluff. Quinoa triples in expansion after cooking.
    3. For the Instant Pot: 1/2 c. quinoa : 3/4 c. water = 1.5 c. cooked; 2/3 c. quinoa : 1 c. water = 2 c. cooked; 3/4 c. quinoa : 1 c. + 2TBSP water = 2.25 cooked; 1 c. quinoa : 1.5 c. water = 3 c. cooked.
    4. Assemble the falafel quinoa salad: Combine the quinoa, chickpeas, red onion, cucumber, tomatoes, chopped herbs in a large mixing bowl. Pour the dressing over top. Toss to combine, ensuring all of the quinoa is well coated in the dressing. Taste, seasoning with additional salt or ground black pepper as desired. Top with crumbled feta. Serve over salad greens, optional.

    Falafel Quinoa Salad:

  • Spanakorizo (Greek Spinach and Rice)

    Recipe adapted from Bowl of Delicious.

    Ingredients:

    • 1/4 c. olive oil
    • 1 bunch green onions thinly sliced, 1/2 c. dark green tops reserved (about 8-10 green onions)
    • 8-10 oz. baby spinach 
    • 1 c. basmati rice (or other long grain white rice or parboiled rice)
    • 2 c. vegetable broth, water, or chicken broth
    • 1/2 tsp. salt plus more if needed
    • 1/4 c. fresh chopped dill (can also use mint, parsley, or a combination)
    • Juice and zest of 1 lemon (about 1 tsp. zest and 2 TBSP juice)
    • Crumbled feta cheese and chopped fresh herbs/green onions for serving

    Directions:

    1. In a large heavy pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil. Add the sliced green onions (reserve 1/2 c. of the dark green tops) and sauté until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the baby spinach and sauté until wilted, about 2 minutes.
    2. Add the basmati rice and stir to coat. Pour in the vegetable broth and add the kosher salt. Bring to a boil, stir once, cover, and simmer on low for about 15 minutes (or until rice is cooked – you should see holes in the top, and if you tilt the pot you should no longer see any water pooling).
    3. Stir in the fresh chopped dill or other herbs, the lemon zest, and lemon juice, and the reserved sliced green onions (keep some out for garnish if you like).
    4. Season to taste with salt, and serve garnished with crumbled feta cheese and reserved green onions, if desired.

    Spanakorizo (Greek Spinach and Rice):

  • Tofu Shawarma Wrap

    Ingredients:

    • 16 oz. block of super firm tofu, drained and pressed
    • 1 1/2 tsp. cumin
    • 1 1/2 tsp. curry powder
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/2 tsp. pepper
    • Juice of 1 lemon, about 2 TBSP
    • Olive oil
    • French fries, frozen or homemade
    • Wraps: tortilla, tofu, French fries, pickles, and garlic sauce (mix mayo and garlic to your liking)

    Directions:

    1. Drain tofu and slice in half so that your have 2: 3 x 4 x 1 blocks, then wrap in a towel and place a heavy object on top to press the remaining water out.
    2. In a small bowl, mix the cumin, curry powder, salt, and pepper and set aside.
    3. Juice the lemon into a small bowl.
    4. Put olive oil in a small bowl (start with 1 TBSP and add more as necessary).
    5. Once the tofu is finished being pressed, slice the tofu into 1/2 inch slices – you’ll get 12-16 slices.
    6. In a 9×13 baking dish, place the tofu slices. Then using a pastry brush, brush the slices with olive oil and lemon juice, and then sprinkle about 1/2 the spice mixture. Turn the slices over and repeat brushing with olive oil and lemon juice and then sprinkle with the remaining spice mixture. Let tofu marinate for about 1 hour.
    7. After 1 hour, heat olive oil in a skillet on medium high heat. Add the tofu and leave undisturbed for 5 minutes, and then flip the tofu and leave undisturbed for 5 minutes.
    8. In your wrap, add tofu, French fries, pickles, and garlic sauce.
    9. French Fries: use frozen (and cook according to package) or make your own—1 russet potato, sliced into 1/4 inch strips, then soak in cold water bath for about 1 hour; then place fries on a towel and dry completely; once dried add fries to a bowl and add olive oil, salt and pepper, and paprika to your liking; cook in air fryer on 380F for 20-25 minutes, shaking every 5 minutes until reach desired doneness.

    Tofu Shawarma Wraps:

  • Naan or Pita

    These can be used as naan or pita.

    Recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest.

    Ingredients:

    • 1/4 c. hot tap water
    • 1 TBSP sugar
    • 3/4 tsp. active dry yeast
    • 3/4 c. warm milk
    • 1 c. plain Greek yogurt
    • 4 c. all-purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
    • 1 tsp. baking soda
    • 1 tsp. salt

    Directions:

    1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the water, sugar, and yeast and stir until the yeast is dissolved. Let it sit for 10 minutes or until the mixture begins to froth and rise.
    2. When the yeast is foamy and smells like bread, add the milk, yogurt, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and mix the with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together. As soon as it comes together, stop kneading. It should be sticky, but should form a ball and be soft. Cover the bowl with a damp towel or plastic wrap and let sit in a warm place 1 hour or if not using right away overnight in the fridge.
    3. When ready to cook divide the dough into 8 equal balls and using a rolling pin, roll each piece of dough into an oval shape. It should be about 6-8 inches long and about 1/4-inch thick, but no thinner. Repeat this method with the rest of the dough.
    4. Cooking Option 1: Warm a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat (you want a hot pan). Brush both sides of the naan with melted butter and if desired sprinkle on any spices you like such as cumin and garlic. Place the naan on the hot skillet, cover with a lid and bake for 1 minute, until you see bubbles starting to form. Flip and cook for 1-2 minutes on the other side, until large toasted spots appear on the underside. Place the naan in a tea towel-lined dish. Repeat with the rest of the naans and serve. These are best eaten fresh, but will keep in a ziplock bag for a few days and reheat in the oven.
    5. Cooking Option 2: Cook each naan in your Ooni. Place the naan in a tea towel-lined dish. Repeat with the rest of the naans and serve. These are best eaten fresh, but will keep in a ziplock bag for a few days and reheat in the oven.

    Naan or Pita:

  • Jennifer Aniston’s Salad aka The Rachel Salad

    Israeli couscous has become a family favorite, so I subbed the quinoa for the Israeli couscous. You could also use bulgar, farro, couscous, etc.

    Recipe adapted from Iowa Girl Eats.

    Ingredients:

    Couscous Salad

    • 1 1/2 c. water
    • 1 c. Israeli couscous
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1 tsp. olive oil
    • 1/2 small red onion, minced
    • 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    • 1 English cucumber, diced
    • 1/2 c. packed fresh parsley, finely chopped
    • 1/2 c. loosely packed fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
    • 1/2 c. roasted salted pistachios, chopped
    • 1/2 c. (2oz.) crumbled feta cheese
    • Salt and pepper, to taste
    • Mixed lettuce

    Lemon Dressing

    • 1/2 c. lemon juice (about 2-4 lemons)
    • 1/2 c. olive oil
    • 1 TBSP honey
    • Salt and pepper, to taste

    Directions:

    1. Lemon Dressing: Add ingredients to a jar with a tight fitting lid, or small bowl, then shake or whisk to combine.
    2. Couscous: Add water, salt, and olive oil to saucepan and over medium high heat bring to a boil; once boiling, add the couscous and stir; then cover the sauce pan and lower the heat to simmer; simmer for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    3. Onion and couscous: Add red onion to a large mixing bowl. Once the couscous is cooked, add couscous to the bowl with the onion, and let the couscous cool for a few minutes.
    4. Add dressing: Add about 1/8 c. of dressing to the slightly warm couscous and toss well to combine.
    5. Salad: Add chickpeas through mint to the onion and couscous, and toss to combine. Add about 1/3 of the dressing and toss to coat. Taste and adjust seasoning. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
    6. Serve: Add mixed lettuce greens to a plate, top with a generous scoop of the couscous salad; sprinkle the pistachios and feta on top and drizzle with dressing.

    Jennifer Aniston’s Salad aka The Rachel Salad:

  • Chicken Shawarma Feast

    This feast is beyond delicious.
    Serve with pita, naan, or tortillas.
    Chicken recipe from Noshastic, and rice recipe adapted from A Family Feast.

    Chicken Shawarma Ingredients:

    • 1 lb. boneless chicken
    • 3 TBSP fresh lemon juice
    • 3 TBSP olive oil
    • 4 garlic cloves, minced
    • 2 tsp. salt
    • 2 tsp. pepper
    • 4 tsp. ground cumin
    • 4 tsp. ground coriander
    • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
    • 1 tsp. turmeric
    • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
    • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste

    Middle Eastern Rice Ingredients:

    • 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 c. rice
    • 1 tsp. curry powder
    • 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
    • 1 1/2 chicken broth or water
    • Salt, to taste

    Middle Eastern Chickpea Salad Ingredients:

    Salad:

    • 1 large English cucumber, diced
    • 5 green onions, diced
    • 1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    • 1 pint of grape tomatoes, halved
    • 1 red bell pepper, diced
    • 1 orange bell pepper, diced
    • 1/4 c. parsley, minced
    • 1/4 c. mint, minced
    • 3/4 c. crumbled feta

    Dressing:

    • Zest and juice of 3 lemons
    • 1/2 tsp. Sumac
    • 1 garlic clove, ,minced
    • 1/2 c. olive oil
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1/2 tsp. pepper

    Garlic Sauce Ingredients:

    • Mayonnaise
    • Garlic, minced to taste

    Directions:

    1. Chicken: Place the lemon juice through cayenne in a Ziploc bag and combine. Add the chicken and marinate overnight. Cook chicken on grill, stovetop, or oven.
    2. Rice: In a medium saucepan, add olive oil and heat to medium heat. Add rice and cook for five minutes stirring often with a wooden spoon. Add spices and cook one minute; then carefully add broth/water. Bring to a boil and cover and lower heat to low and cook for 12 minutes. During the 12 minutes stir occasionally. After 12 minutes, remove from heat and let sit covered for five minutes, then fluff with a fork.
    3. Middle Eastern Chickpea Salad: In a medium bowl, combine salad ingredients. In a small bowl combine dressing ingredients, and then mix dressing with salad.
    4. Garlic Sauce: mix desired amount of mayonnaise and garlic to taste.

    Chicken Shawarma Feast: