Table of Contents 
Click on any of the titles to take you to the appropriate piece 

Features
Sumac: May Bring You  Tabata Intervals  23 Harmony, but Always Boasts  By Barry Lovelace    Great Taste 13  Maximize your efficiency in the 
By Jill Nussinow, MS, RD 
 

Learn about this tart, overlooked  spice that is so important to  Middle Eastern cuisine.   

gym with Tabata Intervals.   

The Vegan Mediterranean  Diet:  A Very Compassionate  Choice 24 
By Christine Watson 

The Far East Meets the  Middle:  Japanese and  Middle Eastern Fusion  15 
By Chef Philip Gelb 
 

Edamame hummus, miso veggie  kebabs, and more.  Yum!   

  The Compassionate Nutritionist  shows how easy it is to take a  predominantly vegan cuisine  completely vegan.   

Vegan Cuisine and the Law:  Vegan Pocketbook Power 25 
By Mindy Kursban, Esq. 

Raw Food:  The Beautiful  Road to Health  17 
By Angela Elliott 

  An inspirational reflection on the  transformative healing power of  raw foods through three personal  stories.   

  Find out how you can make a  difference through the mighty  influence of your spending power. 

  Marketplace  8 
 

Columns 
 

Get connected and find out about  vegan friendly businesses and  organizations. 
 

What’s Cooking?  3 
 

Recipe Index  42 
 

             

Near East 21 
By Liz Lonetti 
 

Find out what’s up with the Vegan  A listing of all the recipes found in  this issue, compiled with links.  Culinary Experience this month.      see the following page for  Ancient Fruit Trees of the  interviews and reviews… 

Growing tips, culinary uses, and a  bit of history about four ancient,  and contemporary, trees.      
December 2009|1

Food from the Middle East

 
     

Table of Contents 2 
Click on any of the titles to take you to the appropriate piece 

Interviews
Interview with Chef and  Host Toni Fiore 28 
 

Reviews 
Restaurant Review:  Pita Jungle  36 
By Madelyn Pryor 
 

       

Angela specializes in making raw  food simple and accessible  without compromising on flavor.   

Pita Jungle boasts an extensive  menu of Mediterranean inspired  cuisine with lots of vegan options. 
 

Featured Artist 
 

                           

Poet M. Butterflies Katz 32 
 

Product Review:  Yummy  Earth Suckers and Candies 38
By Madelyn Pryor 
 

A love for poetry, cooking, and  animals merge in Butterflies’  inspiring words, a mix of  compassion and philosophy set to  meter and rhyme.   

Yummy Earth produces extra‐tasty  organic suckers and other candy,  with lots of different flavors set to  tantalize and delight. 
 

Book Review:  The Sublime  Cookbook 40 
By  Madelyn Pryor 

  Sublime is one of the preeminent  vegan restaurants in the United  States.  Read on to see what our  reviewer has to say about their  foray into the cookbook world. 
 

                                 

 

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|2

 

The Vegan Culinary Experience
        Food from the Middle East       December 2009   
                          Publisher    Jason Wyrick                                  Editors     Eleanor Sampson,                                                   Carolyn Mullin,                                                  Madelyn Pryor             Nutrition Analyst     Eleanor Sampson                         Web Design    William Snell & Jason Wyrick                            Graphics     Alex Searcy & Jason Wyrick             Video Production    Kristen Mozafarri                             Reviewer    Madelyn Pryor      Contributing Authors    Jason Wyrick                                                 Madelyn Pryor                                                 Jill Nussinow                                                 Mindy Kursban                                                 Liz Lonetti                                                 Sharon Valencik                                                 Philip Gelb                                                 Barry Lovelace                                                 Christine Watson                                                 Emilie Hardman 

What’s Cooking?
My first exposure to Middle Eastern  food was at an Egyptian restaurant in  Fort Worth, Texas.  The owners,  Egyptian natives themselves, had a  love for food and a love for their  restaurant that was both inspiring and  infectious.  After my first visit, I was  hooked and Middle Eastern cuisine  became a weekly sojourn.  It was inevitable that I would make my  foray into learning how to make my own delicacies.  Cumin,  coriander, pomegranates, pita, tangy flavors, deep flavors, bold  flavors.  This was definitely a labor of love and well worth the  reward.  While I still love visiting that Middle Eastern restaurant  whenever I’m back in Fort Worth, I love visiting my own Middle  Eastern kitchen just as much.     Eat healthy, eat compassionately, and eat well!         

 
                Photography Credits  

                  Cover Page     Jason Wyrick & Liz Lonetti   
                Recipe Images     Jason Wyrick                                                 Emilie Hardman    Seitan Piccata                      Jason Wyrick    Quince and Jam                  Courtesy of Classic Garden                                                          Magazine    Sumac, Turkish Coffee      GNU Free Documentation                                                 License    Bank Notes                          Public Domain             M. Butterflies Katz   Courtesy of M. Butterflies                           Toni Fiore   Courtesy of Toni Fiore                          Pita Jungle   Jason Wyrick                    Yummy Earth    Yummy Earth Website                                       
 

             

Food from the Middle East  

December 2009|3

Contributors
Jill Nussinow, MS, RD, The Veggie Queen ‐ Jill is a Registered Dietitian and has a Masters  Degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from Florida International University. After graduating, she  migrated to California and began a private nutrition practice providing individual consultations  and workshops, specializing in nutrition for pregnancy, new mothers, and children.  You can  find out more about The Veggie Queen at www.theveggiequeen.com.  

      Jason Wyrick ‐ Chef Jason Wyrick is the Executive Chef of Devil Spice, Arizona's vegan catering  company, and the publisher of The Vegan Culinary Experience. Chef Wyrick has been regularly  featured on major television networks and in the press.  He has done demos with several  doctors, including Dr. Neal Barnard of the PCRM, Dr. John McDougall, and Dr. Gabriel  Cousens.  Chef Wyrick was also a guest instructor in the Le Cordon Bleu program.  He has  catered for PETA, Farm Sanctuary, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Google. Visit Chef Jason Wyrick at  www.devilspice.com and www.veganculinaryexperience.com.  

Madelyn Pryor ‐ Madelyn ‘the Reviewer’ Pryor is one of Amazon.com’s top 1500 reviewers,  and a certified Vine Voice. She also gets several requests every day to review books,  movies, and graphic novels from various publishers including Harper‐Collins. That means  that people really want Madelyn’s advice and opinion, which is fine with her, because it  makes it that much easier for her to enact her plans for world domination. Those plans  currently involve taking a break from her Masters of Psychology program to be the Sous  Chef for the Vegan Culinary Experience. You can reach her at                                      madelyn@veganculinaryexperience.com.     Eleanor Sampson – Eleanor is the editor for The Vegan Culinary Experience, author, and an  expert vegan baker with a specialty in delicious vegan sweets (particularly cinnamon rolls!)   You can reach Eleanor at Eleanor@veganculinaryexperience.com.                    

Contributors
  Mindy Kursban - Mindy Kursban is a practicing attorney who is passionate about  animals, food, and health. She gained her experience and knowledge about vegan  cuisine and the law while working for ten years as general counsel and then executive  director of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. Since leaving PCRM in  2007, Mindy has been writing and speaking to help others make the switch to a plant‐ based diet. Look for her website in the near future: www.veg‐curious.com. Contact  Mindy now at mkursban@aol.com.        Liz Lonetti ‐ As a professional urban designer, Liz Lonetti is passionate about building  community, both physically and socially.  She graduated from the U of MN with a BA in  Architecture in 1998. She also serves as the Executive Director for the Phoenix Permaculture  Guild, a non‐profit organization whose mission is to inspire sustainable living through  education, community building and creative cooperation (www.phoenixpermaculture.org).   A long time advocate for building greener and more inter‐connected communities, Liz  volunteers her time and talent for other local green causes.  In her spare time, Liz enjoys  cooking with the veggies from her gardens, sharing great food with friends and neighbors,  learning from and teaching others.  To contact Liz, please visit her blog site  www.phoenixpermaculture.org/profile/LizDan.      Sharon Valencik ‐ Sharon Valencik is the author of Sweet Utopia: Simply Stunning Vegan  Desserts. She is raising two vibrant young vegan sons and rescued animals, currently a rabbit  and a dog. She comes from a lineage of artistic chef matriarchs and has been baking since  age five. She is working on her next book, World Utopia: Delicious and Healthy  International Vegan Cuisine. Please visit www.sweetutopia.com for more information, to ask  questions, or to provide feedback.          Chef Philip Gelb ‐ Philip Gelb was born and raised in Brooklyn NY. He ended up in Florida  where he received a BA in cultural anthropology and did graduate studies in  ethnomusicology.  For the last decade he has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area where he  works as a professional musician and music teacher as well as a vegan chef. As a musician he  has performed all over the United States and in Japan, Europe and Canada.  5 years ago he  started In the Mood for Food, a vegetarian personal chef and catering company.  He has  been vegetarian since 17 and after becoming vegan 4 years ago, he changed his business to  strictly vegan cuisine. Although totally self taught as a chef, he is a very popular vegan  cooking teacher, hosting monthly classes.  His other interests include hiking, travelling, and  he is an avid film buff. Of course, he loves cooking, especially for friends as well as professionally. Visit Phil at  www.philipgelb.blogspot.com.  

Contributors
Barry Lovelace ‐ Barry Lovelace is a vegan fitness coach specializing in the functional training  of athletes.  He is the owner of FitQuest Fitness in Allentown, PA, and frequently produces  routine fitness podcasts at his site www.barrylovelaceblog.com.            Christine Watson ‐ Christine Watson, MS, RD, has been teaching nutrition, health and  wellness since 1992. She is a registered dietitian, nutritionist, and certified wellness coach. As  the owner of Compassionate Nutritionist, LLC, Christine’s goal for her clients is to help them  incorporate healthy vegetarian eating and green living practices into their busy lives. To  learn more about the services and products offered by Christine and subscribe to her  “Compassionate Living” ezine where you’ll receive a FREE copy of her Healthy & Eco‐ conscious 7‐day Menu w/recipes included, visit the company website at  www.CompassionateNutritionist.com  or email Christine at  Christine@CompassionateNutritionist.com.    Emilie Hardman ‐ Trained as a sociologist and experienced as a data archivist, Emilie  Hardman took a circuitous route into the food world where she is now a popular vegan  baking and cooking instructor, award‐winning blogger, restaurant reviewer, and a  contributor to many food magazines and websites.  Though vegan since her teens, it was a  post‐college stint in the New York City bakery, Lifethyme, that first opened Emilie’s mind and  mouth to the many possibilities of vegan treats. Bringing the experiences of an international  childhood and the perspective of a researcher to her food, Emilie developed thoughtful  recipes and started writing about her investigations into ingredients and the meaning of  food in our lives, creating a regular food and food politics column called “The Conscious  Kitchen” in What’s Up Magazine.  The column soon turned into her award‐winning blog.  Combining classroom  experience at the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts and the Natural Gourmet Institute with production  management experience at a busy Cambridge bakery, Emilie ran her own custom vegan baked goods business  for two years. She is currently working on a cookbook of sophisticated, internationally inspired vegan desserts.   Visit Emilie at www.consciouskitchen.net.    

About the VCE
The Vegan Culinary Experience is an educational vegan culinary  magazine designed by professional vegan chefs to help make  vegan cuisine more accessible.  Published by Chef Jason Wyrick,  the magazine utilizes the electronic format of the web to go  beyond the traditional content of a print magazine to offer  classes, podcasts, an interactive learning community, and links to  articles, recipes, and sites embedded throughout the magazine to  make retrieving information more convenient for the reader.     The VCE is also designed to bring vegan chefs, instructors,  medical professionals, authors, and businesses together with the  growing number of people interested in vegan cuisine.    Eat healthy, eat compassionately, and eat well. 

Become a Subscriber
Subscribing to the VCE is FREE!  Subscribers have access to our Learning Community, back issues, recipe  database, and extra educational materials.    Visit http://veganculinaryexperience.com/VCESubscribe.htm to subscribe.   
*PRIVACY POLICY ‐ Contact information is never, ever given or sold to another individual or company 

 

Not Just a Magazine
Meal Service 
The Vegan Culinary Experience also provides weekly meals that coincide with the recipes from the magazine.   Shipping is available across the United States.  Raw, gluten‐free, and low‐fat diabetic friendly options are  available.  Visit http://veganculinaryexperience.com/VCEMealService.htm for more information.   

Culinary Instruction 
Chef Jason Wyrick and many of the contributors to the magazine are available for private culinary instruction,  seminars, interviews, and other educational based activities.  For information and pricing, contact us at  http://veganculinaryexperience.com/VCEContact.htm.  
 

An Educational and Inspirational Journey of Taste, Health, and Compassion 
Food from the Middle East December 2009|7

Marketplace
Welcome to the Marketplace, our new spot for  finding vegetarian friendly companies, chefs, authors,  bloggers, cookbooks, products, and more!  One of the  goals of The Vegan Culinary Experience is to connect  our readers with organizations that provide relevant  products and services for vegans, so we hope you  enjoy this new feature!      Click on the Ads – Each ad is linked to the appropriate  organization’s website.  All you need to do is click on  the ad to take you there.    Become a Marketplace Member – Become connected  by joining the Vegan Culinary Experience  Marketplace.  Membership is available to those who  financially support the magazine, to those who  promote the magazine, and to those who contribute  to the magazine.  Contact Chef Jason Wyrick at  chefjason@veganculinaryexperience.com for details!   

Current Members 
  Rational Animal  (www.rational‐animal.org)   Farm Sanctuary  (www.farmsanctuary.com)   GoDairyFree.org and My Sweet Vegan  (www.godairyfree.org)   Jill Nussinow, MS, RD, The Veggie Queen  (www.theveggiequeen.com)  Chef Mayra “Dr. Flavor”  (www.mychefmayra.com)   Sweet Utopia  (www.sweetutopia.com)   In The Mood for Food  (www.philipgelb.blogspot.com)   The Phoenix Permactulture Guild  (www.phoneixpermaculture.org)   Milan Photography  (www.milanphotography.com)          

Marketplace
                                                                                         

Marketplace
                                                         

Marketplace

                                       

Marketplace
                                                                                         

Sumac – May Bring You Harmony, but Always Boasts Great Taste
By Jill Nussinow, MS, RD, The Veggie Queen™
The key to great  Middle Eastern  food lies in the  combination of  fresh ingredients  and the spices,  some of which are  unfamiliar to us  here in the US such  as sumac, while  many of them, such  as cumin and black  pepper, are used  liberally in other  types of cuisine.  One that you may  be unfamiliar with  is sumac, which  comes from a red  berry that is most  often ground into a  powder. However,  you can also  purchase, or forage  for the berries,  themselves and  grind them.     Sumac imparts a  tart, lemony flavor  that is difficult to  describe, as is most  any other food. You  can use it instead of  lemon or vinegar in  recipes.    The Natural Capital  blog  http://bit.ly/YWr78  suggests using it to  make a non‐lemon  lemonade. Beware  that in some places  Poison Sumac grows,  so unless you are sure  that you do not have  it, do not use.  Apparently, it is rare in  the DC area. You can  also purchase sumac  berries or powder  from your local Middle  Eastern store or,  lacking one of those,  from an spice  purveyor such as  Mountain Rose Herbs  http://www.mountain roseherbs.com.     Sumac’s history goes  back thousands of  years according to  information from The  Spice Depot  http://www.thespiced epot.com/spice‐ notes/Sumac/. The  name sumac means  “dark red” from the  Aramaic summaq.  Sumac berries grow on  the small shrubby tree  Rhus coriaria. The 

Fattoush
Serves 6    Based on a traditional Middle Eastern bread salad, this  version has many more vegetables and not as much bread. It  is also lower in fat but still has enough for great flavor. Flax oil  obviously isn’t traditional but combined with purslane, this  dish packs a good dose of Omega‐3 fatty acids, along with  great taste.   

2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil 1 tbsp. flax oil 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice 2 cloves garlic, crushed Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste 2 tsp. ground sumac ½ head crisp romaine lettuce, washed, dried and torn up 1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced 2 large firm tomatoes, diced 4 green onions, chopped ½ cup Italian parsley, chopped ¼ cup fresh mint, chopped ½ red, or green, bell pepper, chopped (optional) 1 cup purslane, chopped (optional) 1 cup arugula leaves, torn into pieces (optional) 2 pita breads, split, toasted and broken into bite size pieces (I like Trader Joe’s whole wheat pita with sesame seeds for this) To make the dressing, mix together the oils, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Put the remaining vegetables and herbs in a large bowl. Refrigerate, covered, until just before serving. Then add the broken up toasted pita bread. Add the dressing and toss well. Serve immediately.
 
© The Veggie Queen™, Jill Nussinow, MS, R.D  http://www.theveggiequeen.com 

 
Food from the Middle East

December 2009|13

Natural Capital also  suggests that other Rhus  varieties grow that yield  the tasty red berries.  She notes that poison  sumac has white berries.    Traditionally sumac was  used for its medicinal  properties, which was  mostly as a diuretic  and/or laxative. I haven’t found either to be true  but I am using it in modest quantities in my recipes.    According to The Lucky Mojo Curio Co. http://herb‐ magic.com/sumac‐berries.html sumac may have  qualities beyond culinary. It’s said that it sumac  “brings harmony and resolves difficulties” in law  cases and in the bedroom. Interesting, isn’t it?    You might find sumac mixed with thyme and/or  sesame in a typical Middle Eastern dry spice mix  called Zaatar. I think that it’s a spice that deserves  higher status so you might want to get some and  experiment with it.     Use sumac powder in this recipe for Fattoush, a  Middle Eastern bread salad, or add it to hummus,  or any other dish that calls for lemon to see what  you think. It might just bring you luck, but it always  provides unforgettable flavor.                     

The Author 
Jill Nussinow, MS, RD, The Veggie  Queen ‐ Jill is a Registered Dietitian  and has a Masters Degree in Dietetics  and Nutrition from Florida  International University. After  graduating, she migrated to California  and began a private nutrition practice  providing individual consultations and  workshops, specializing in nutrition for pregnancy, new  mothers, and children.  You can find out more about The  Veggie Queen at www.theveggiequeen.com.  

           

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|14

The Far East Meets the Middle: Japanese and Middle Eastern Fusion
with Chef Philip Gelb
  Last year, thanks to some amazing musicians and  dancers I was collaborating with (Sami Shumays,  Sinan Erdemsel, and Aubre Hill), I was challenged  to come up with some Japanese‐Arabic fusion  dishes.  Here are a few examples that I conjured  up, trying to fuse two rather different cuisines.   These recipes were used as part of an evening this  summer on my popular dinner/concert series,  when Sami (an incredible Arabic violin player) and  Sinan (an exceptional Turkish oud player) were  performing during their visit to California.    1 tbsp. shiso chopped    Blend all ingredients well.    vegetables for marinade  lotus root, sliced 1/2 inch thick  heirloom tomato, quartered  gyspy pepper, halved  yama‐imo, sliced 3/4 inch thick  Japanese eggplant, sliced in 1 inch rounds  zucchini or yellow squash, sliced in 1 inch rounds    Let vegetables marinade for 2 hours or overnight.  Arrange on skewers and grill for 10 minutes or till  done, cook till just before charring for best flavor,  or roast at 425 for 12 minutes or till just about to  char.   

edamame hummous 
a Japanese flavor of a classic Middle Eastern    2 cups cooked soybeans  1/3 cup tahini  2 tbsp toasted sesame oil  ¼ cup yuzu juice   1 tsp. smoked paprika  ½ tsp. freshly cracked black pepper  1 and ¼ tsp. sea salt  1 tbsp. chopped shiso leaves    blend everything together in a food processor or  use a mortar and pestle.   

pomegranate dengaku 
Here, the traditional miso topping is infused with  Middle Eastern flavors    2 tbsp. pomegranate molasses  1 tbsp. tamarind paste  2 tbsp. tahini  3 tbsp. white miso  grated rind of half yuzu (or lime)  ¾ tsp. cumin  ¼ tsp. cardamom  ½ tsp. freshly cracked black pepper  stock to thin, if necessary    Combine ingredients and blend well.  Cut firm tofu  into 3 inch squares.  Cut Japanese eggplant in half  lengthwise.  Deep fry tofu and eggplant in 375  degree oil till crisp.  Place tofu and eggplant on  broiling pan, cover with the dengaku topping and  broil for 1‐2 minutes or till starts to brown.   Garnish with chopped green onion   
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veggie kabobs with red miso marinade 
  the marinade  ¼ cup red miso  1 tsp. cumin  ¼ tsp. cardamom  2 cloves garlic, minced  1/3 cup olive oil  2 tbsp. mirin  1 yuzu juice and rind (use lime or meyer lemon if  you cannot get yuzu)  1 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper  ¼ cup stock 
Food from the Middle East

blueberry wasabi sauce 
A very simple and delightful summer sauce using  fresh wasabi roots. Fresh wasabi is now being  grown in Oregon and slowly becoming more  accessible in the US. Most Americans have never  had wasabi but are used to the horseradish with  food coloring that is very popular in American sushi  restaurants. Fresh wasabi has a milder, sweeter  aroma and flavor and is worth seeking out and  paying the extra price for.    Simply take a quart of blueberries and place in  saucepan. Grate one wasabi root and add to the  berries with ½ tsp. sea salt. Simmer over very low  heat, stirring often.                                                                   
Food from the Middle East

The Author    For the last decade, Phil has lived in  the San Francisco Bay Area where  he works as a professional  musician and music teacher as well  as a vegan chef. As a musician he  has performed all over the United  States and in Japan, Europe and  Canada.  Five years ago he started  In the Mood for Food, a vegetarian personal chef  and catering company.  He has been vegetarian  since 17 and after becoming vegan 4 years ago, he  changed his business to strictly vegan cuisine.  Although totally self taught as a chef, he is a very  popular vegan cooking teacher, hosting monthly  classes.  His other interests include hiking,  travelling, and he is an avid film buff. Of course, he  loves cooking, especially for friends as well as  professionally.  You can reach Chef Philip Gelb at  http://philipgelb.blogspot.com.    

December 2009|16

Raw Food – The Beautiful Road to Health
By Angela Elliott
I am convinced that raw food is the fountain of  youth. I marvel at the magic of raw food every day  and its ability to transform my life. A dear friend of  mine, Lou Corona, has been raw for over 37 years,  and I swear he gets younger every single time I see  him! His secret is raw fruits, veggies, greens, lots of  green juice, probiotics, and enzymes. A few years  ago, I saw an article online that outlined the  benefits of raw food. The strange part is it wasn't  written by a raw foodist, it was written by a  mainstream journalist! The journalist was writing  all about  scientific  findings on  The recipes scattered  how raw  throughout this article are  fruits,  crowd‐pleasers and you  vegetables,  absolutely cannot go wrong  and greens  when you serve them up!   effect the    human body.  ~Angela  One of the    statements  All recipes are from Angela’s  that  Book, Alive in Five.  particularly  caught my  eye was that  scientists had discovered that raw food could be  the cure for cancer and other diseases. Realizing I  had found an amazing gem, I bookmarked the site  to send out to friends and family, but when I went  back to the site, the article had been mysteriously  removed. What a shame it is that information like  this isn't out there for all to read. Lou Corona cured  himself of cancer and other diseases with this  amazing diet.     Here's Lou's story straight from his book, "Get  Lean, Clean, and Serene with Lou Corona." In 1973,  when I was twenty‐one I was sick and suffering and  on my last breath, and I felt ready to leave this life 
Food from the Middle East

if that's what God wanted. Instead, through  remarkable events I was directed to abstain from  eating flesh and to eat only living foods.  Immediately afterwards I met an extraordinary  man who looked twenty years younger than his  stated age of fifty‐two. This man had traveled the  world for thirty years seeking truth and wisdom  about how to live in the highest, best possible way.  He became my mentor and friend and shared with  me many secrets about caring for my body, spirit,  and emotions, and he helped me change my mental  perspective. Because I followed this wise man's  principles and continue to do so to this day I have  recovered permanently from chronic asthma, a  tumor, severe acne, arthritis, candida, sinus  congestion and infections, and chronic  constipation. Not only did I recover from these  physical ailments, but also my whole life was  transformed. Now every day is a great day! Each  moment is precious. And I believe that each person  I meet is special, and worthy of great health and all  the blessings that come with it. As a result of being  so blessed, I have dedicated my life to helping, men,  women, children, and pets reach this same level of  vibrant, radiant health.     Lou Corona really has a unique perspective on the  raw food lifestyle and of all the people I have met  and had the pleasure of working with, Lou is by far  the most influential person I have ever known. He  has helped me in so many ways, I can't even count.  This man is living proof that not only can you feel  better, live better, but actually live in a radiant and  truly vibrant way and sustain youth.    My other friend, Jay Kordich (The Juice Man) was  cured of cancer by Max Gerson's program. Here's  Jay's story:    

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Long, long before he became the Juiceman, and  developed the Juiceman juicer, Jay Kordich was a  student at the University of Southern California  who had become ill and had received a very  unwelcome diagnosis: he had cancer of the  bladder. Instead of being crushed by the news, Jay  resolved to find a doctor who could cure him, and in  the process he dramatically changed the direction  of his life. 

his life forever. He now had a passion for juicing  that matched his passion for life, and would go on  to spread the word about the power of   juicing. Today, Jay is as vital as vital can be and he  is living proof that juice therapy is a real therapy ‐  not just a fad.  

Cucumber Pizzas (requires no equipment  at all)   Makes 4 servings!    One day I was in a hurry to prepare  something tasty before one of my friends  came over for tea, but all I had in the  house were olives and cucumbers. Hence  this recipe was born! My friend loved it  and requests it every time she comes to  visit. This is not only her favorite recipe,  but also all of my clients favorite recipe  too.    4 cucumbers, sliced into rounds  2 cups chopped olives green or black or  both!    Arrange the cucumber slices on an  attractive platter. Top with chopped olives  and serve. 

Coco Choco Heaven    1 Thai young coconut (you can buy these  in any Asian store or Health food stores  like Wholefoods) Use both the coconut  water and the meat.    1 teaspoon agave   3 tablespoons raw cacao powder  (available at most health food stores or  online)   4‐5 ice cubes    Open the coconut, scrape out the meat  with a spoon and add to the blender,  along with the cocao powder, agave, and  ice cubes. Blend on high until smooth and  serve immediately. 

  A local doctor referred Jay to the legendary Dr. Max  Gerson, author of A Cancer Therapy: Results of 50  Cases. Dr. Gerson put Jay on a strict diet of natural  foods which included numerous glasses of juice  each day. (In his book, The Juiceman's Power of  Juicing, Jay indicates that Dr. Gerson had Jay  consume carrot‐apple juice hourly throughout the  day, from 6:00 a.m. until early evening.) The total  transformation took two and a half years, but Jay  finally regained his health. He was cured of cancer  even though the local doctors he had originally  been consulting could not assure him of a complete  recovery! Jay's experience with Dr. Gerson changed 
Food from the Middle East

  Not only have I gotten younger on raw food, but I  too had serious life threatening illnesses that were  helped considerably by a raw food diet. In 1998 I  became mysteriously ill and no matter how many  emergency room or doctor's visits I had, no one  seemed to know what was wrong. After a while I  became bed ridden because my spine went  completely cold and my limbs were numb. I wasn't  sure if I was having a stroke or I had MS or what.  The scary part was not knowing what was wrong. A  year earlier I had a root canal on my top left molar  and instead of putting a porcelain crown on there,  the dentist for whatever strange reason put a  temporary amalgam filling on it. I didn't think  anything of this, because I had never had a root  canal before, so what did I know? Anyway, when I  went back to have the permanent crown put on,  apparently unknown to me, he placed the crown  right over the amalgam! Six months later my tooth 
December 2009|18

exploded in my mouth while I was at the movie  theater. I went back to the dentist and he  explained that I would need some work done, but I  didn't have the money to do what he thought I  needed, so I left the space there. When I became  so ill, I never put two and two together. It wasn't  until my husband decided to take my son and I to  San Diego, thinking the ocean air would do me  some good. He carried me out on to the sand so I  could watch the waves, smell the sea air, and feel  the sand beneath my toes. While I was laying  there, a woman appeared and asked me what was  wrong. Now most people might think that was a bit  weird, but since I have a long history of energy  work, holistic health, and metaphysics, I thought it  was perfect! Anyway, I proceeded to talk with her  and she asked me if anyone had ever done a CAT  scan, X‐ray of my brain, or an MRI, and I said no  and also that no one had even suggested it. My 

poisoning. It was a long road back to health, lots of  juices, chelation therapy, and living foods. My  immune system unfortunately had been weakened  by the infection and when I thought I was well, I 

Nut Yogurt    Blend one cup of your favorite raw  nuts or raw seeds (pre‐soaked) in  filtered or spring water for 24 hours  and drained) with one cup of filtered  or spring water. Add 1/2 teaspoon of  probiotic powder. blend the mixture  until smooth. Pour mixture into a  sealable container and let stand  covered with a paper towel for three  hours. This process allows the mixture  to culture. 

Creamy Tzatziki    2 cups raw nut yogurt (From Alive in  Five‐recipe to follow)  2 cucumbers, diced small  1 clove garlic, minced  3 tablespoon lemon juice  1 tablespoon cold pressed extra virgin  olive oil  Himalayan salt and pepper to taste  1 tablespoon fresh chopped mint  leaves  ¼ teaspoon paprika    Mix together all ingredients.   NOTE:  Add mint for a more traditional  flavor! 

husband took me to the hospital that same day and  insisted that I have one of these. The findings were  pretty darn scary! I had a massive infection right  next to my brain and left untreated would have  killed me in about two weeks. That lady was truly  my angel and coming to San Diego, Ca. saved my  life. Not only did I have an infection, I had mercury 

helped a friend rescue a bird. We didn't realize that  the bird was infected with parrot fever and I stayed  in the same room as the bird. The bird was  continuously flapping its wings and spreading  infected spores right into my lungs as I slept. I was  in the emergency room the next day on a  respirator fighting for my life yet again, and had an  even longer road back to health. I am most  thankful to this lifestyle for saving my life. I am  excited about how great I feel eating this way, as  well as by its amazing ability to make me more  vibrant, alive, sexy, strong, and full of vitality every  day!    No matter what your challenges are, you will be  delighted by raw foods' ability to literally transform  your life. The beauty of this lifestyle is you can start  any time even people in their 80's see results.  Here's a few recipes to get you started and to keep  you motivated to be the best you, you can be.    Many blessings to you,  Angela         
December 2009|19

Food from the Middle East

The Author    Angela Elliott is the author of Alive  in Five, Holiday Fare with  Angela, The Simple Gourmet, and  more books on the way! Angela is  the inventor of Five Minute  Gourmet Meals™, Raw Nut‐Free  Cuisine™, Raw Vegan Dog  Cuisine™, and The Celestialwich™, and the owner  and operator of She‐Zen Cuisine. www.she‐ zencuisine.com    Angela has contributed to various publications,  including Vegnews Magazine, Vegetarian  Baby and Child Magazine, and has taught gourmet  classes, holistic classes, lectured, and on occasion  toured with Lou Corona, a nationally recognized  proponent of living food.               

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|20

Ancient Fruit Trees of the Near East
By Liz Lonetti
It is good to know the truth, but it is better to speak  of palm trees.   ‐ Arab Proverb    This year marks the first harvest from our  pomegranate tree planted only 2 years ago during  the Phoenix Permaculture Guild’s Annual Fruit Tree  Day.  I was amazed at the variety of fruit bearing  trees that would survive the harsh Phoenix climate,  but many of the trees cultivated throughout the  Middle East actually thrive here in the Sonoran  Desert.  Pomegranate, Figs, Dates, Quince and  Apricots are just some of the fruit that will happily  produce prodigious harvests year after year with  very little maintenance, so what does an urban  farmer do with all these delectable offerings?  So  glad you asked…    bowl of water, as the juice will stain anything it  comes into contact with!  Just cut off the “crown”  end and score the rind in several strokes up the  fruit.  Submerse the scored fruit in water for about  10 minutes and then gently break apart the seeds  from the pithy rind.  The seeds will sink and the  rind will float to the top to be easily skimmed off.   The little jewel‐like seeds are one of the most  delicious fruits I’ve ever eaten.    Figs – The fig may well be one of the earliest  domesticated plants in the world, as recent  archeological finds now date the beginning of  cultivation at around 11,000 years ago – that’s  earlier than millet, wheat or any other seed plant  by 5,000 years!  It’s clear that humans have long  loved the succulent first bite of a beautiful tree  ripened fig.  If you haven’t had a chance to get a  fresh fig, the taste is nothing like its dried  counterpart and well worth the effort in planting  and caring for a fig tree.  Last year I picked  probably a full bushel of fresh figs from a  neighbor’s tree.  What I couldn’t eat within a few  days, I portioned out in a single layer on a baking  sheet, froze and then slid them all into bags for  longer term storage in the deep freeze.  A fresh  frozen fig is a creamy summer treat, just like ice  cream!    Dates –  The date  tree has  been  known as  “The Tree  of Life”  and “The  King of  the  Oasis”, and  A date palm with full clusters of dates little  wonder, with seemingly every part of the tree  providing the necessities of life out in a harsh  environment.  There are date palms all over the 
December 2009|21

Two years after planting and the apricot and pomegranate trees are growing well!

Pomegranate ‐ the pomegranate is native to the  Persian region and has been widely cultivated  throughout the  Mediterranean for  several millennia.  This  fruit is easily grown in  our arid southwest, and  will bear heavily – as my  little baby tree will  attest.  The fruit of the  pomegranate is highly  prized both for the juice  and for the flesh  surrounding the little  seeds.  The pomegranate fruit is best cut apart in a 
Food from the Middle East

metro area, just yesterday I had to step over fallen  dates on a Scottsdale shopping center’s sidewalk.   There were beautiful date trees tucked in the  landscape doing a fine job of producing huge  clusters of dates, year after year.  Now is the best  time to hit our local markets to get your own fresh  dates from growers here in the valley.  Stock up on  fresh dates to use within a couple weeks, while  dried dates keep best stored in an airtight  container to keep them fresh for up to a year.  My  favorite quick treat is to stuff a pecan half into a  creamy pitted date – instant pecan pie.  YUM.    Quince – The  quince is a little  known relative of  the apple and pear  and is similar in  taste and texture,  but somewhat  harder and with a  little sour bite.   The long hot  summers here let  the fruit get  sweeter than in  many other  regions.  Here in  Phoenix we’re in the middle of the Quince harvest  and if you’re lucky enough to find local growers,  definitely give this unique fruit a try.  It adds great  flavor to any fruit dishes and salads and can be  baked or roasted, turning the flesh red in the slow  cooked dishes.      Apricots – Truly saving the best for last ‐ the  Turkish phrase "bundan iyisi Şam'da kayısı"  translates, "it doesn't get any better than this" or  literally “better than this is an apricot in  Damascus”.  The Turks know what they are talking  about, as this year we had a single little apricot on  our newly planted tree of two years ago –one bite  transported me into some other frame of mind.  It  was unbelievably sweet and just melted into my  taste buds – heaven from a tree in our own  backyard!  It is hard to think about eating the  apricot in any way, but fresh from the tree, but  they can be dried, preserved, jammed and added  to almost any dish to enhance the sweetness. 
Food from the Middle East

There is really no substitute for a tree ripened  piece of fruit from your own backyard.  I highly  encourage you all to do a little research into what  will grow best in your area.  If you happen to live in  the Phoenix area, there are Tree Classes being held  around the valley that will walk you through tree  selection, planting, care and maintenance.  I took  the class two years ago and am now beginning to  reap the benefits of many of the classic Middle  Eastern fruits fresh from my very own trees.   Planting a tree is THE most effective return on an  initial investment of time and money, the right tree  in the right place will give bountiful harvests to  your grandkids!  Where else can a $32 dollar  investment pay that kind of dividend?    For more information, please check out  www.phoenixpermaculture.org/events  If you are  in the Phoenix area, you can order fruit trees have  been planted and tested in our locale:  www.permaculture.net/FruitTrees/store/    The Author    Liz Lonetti ‐ As a professional  urban designer, Liz Lonetti is  passionate about building  community, both physically and  socially.  She graduated from the  U of MN with a BA in  Architecture in 1998. She also  serves as the Executive Director  for the Phoenix Permaculture  Guild, a non‐profit organization whose mission is to  inspire sustainable living through education,  community building and creative cooperation  (www.phoenixpermaculture.org).  A long time  advocate for building greener and more inter‐ connected communities, Liz volunteers her time and  talent for other local green causes.  In her spare  time, Liz enjoys cooking with the veggies from her  gardens, sharing great food with friends and  neighbors, learning from and teaching others.  To  contact Liz, please visit her blog site  www.phoenixpermaculture.org/profile/LizDan.     Resources  www.urbanfarm.org  www.phoenixpermaculture.org 
December 2009|22

See Amazing Results with Tabata Intervals!
by Barry Lovelace
pretty good shape you may want to check with  Most fitness professionals will agree that the most  your doctor and/or ease into it slowly. Here is an  effective way to workout is with interval training.  example of a possible Tabata Intervals workout  When you do interval training you are working out  (this entire workout will take only 25 minutes!!!)  by alternating bursts of intense activity with    intervals of light activity. This type of training is  You can get  proven to increase one’s endurance and  very creative  cardiovascular strength more effectively and in less  with your  time than other types of exercise.   Tabata    Intervals.  The best example of this type of training and its  You can  amazing benefits is Tabata Intervals. Tabata  insert just  Intervals is a form of  TABATA INTERVAL  about any  interval training that  exercise that  demands 20 seconds    Start with a brief warm‐up   you wish. If  of high intensity  work followed by 10  Squat Jumps (20 seconds on, 10 seconds  you are just starting out you may want to  seconds of rest. This  off for 4 minutes total)  only do one four‐minute Tabata and add  One minute break  others as you progress.   30 second sequence  Push‐ups (20 seconds on, 10 seconds off    is repeated 8 times  for 4 minutes total)  In closing, Tabata Intervals is a super  for a total of four  One minute break  effective and super efficient way to  minutes. Yes, you  Jog in Place (20 seconds on, 10 seconds  increase endurance and cardiovascular  read that right, four  health. It’s challenging, creative and fun.  minutes. What good  off for 4 minutes total)  One minute break  We all want to be fit and at the same  can four minutes do,  Tricep Dips (20 seconds on, 10 seconds  you ask? A lot!   time most of us do not want to spend  off for 4 minutes total)  hours on end at the gym. Tabata Intervals    Cool down and stretch  delivers impressive results in a very little  The Tabata Interval  was derived from a  amount of time, who wouldn’t want that?    study performed by Dr. Izumi Tabata of the  National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo,  The Author    Japan. He discovered that the 20 seconds on/10  seconds off formula was the optimum way to  Barry Lovelace is a vegan  challenge both the aerobic and anaerobic systems  fitness coach specializing  improving one’s true fitness level and endurance  in the functional training  drastically.   of athletes.  He is the  owner of FitQuest Fitness  This is truly a workout that you have to experience  in Allentown, PA, and  to appreciate, it’s amazing. It is also very  frequently produces  customizable in that many, many exercises can be  routine fitness podcasts at his site  used within the Tabata Intervals Protocol. Of  www.barrylovelaceblog.com.   course, like all exercise, if you are not already in 
Food from the Middle East December 2009|23

A Very Compassionate Choice
The Mediterranean Diet, which traditionally  includes fruits, vegetables, pasta, grains, nuts,  seeds, and fish is given a “5‐star rating” as a heart‐ healthy way of eating.  While all of these parts of  the healthy diet remain tried and true at reducing  the risk for heart disease, a VEGAN Mediterranean  diet, eliminating all animal food sources, is an even  healthier and more compassionate choice.      High in protein, vitamins, minerals, and Omega‐3  fats there is no wonder why this particular way of  eating takes a healthier precedence over the  Standard American Diet.  Eliminating fish, dairy,  and eggs would take the diet to a greater level of  heart health benefits.  Protein food sources derived  from nuts, seeds, seitan, and tempeh would still  maintain the same nutritional benefits without the  addition of fish, dairy or eggs.  Nuts and seeds,  though a great source of protein and Omega‐3’s  (certain varieties), are very high in fat.  Therefore,  they shouldn’t be eaten in large amounts‐ typically  a handful a day will do.      The very fragrant olive oil provides the rich source  of monounsaturated fat, which lowers LDL  cholesterol (“bad” cholesterol) and increases HDL  cholesterol (“good” cholesterol).  Preparing your  meals with moderate amounts of olive oil can also  help you eat more healthfully on this diet since it  improves the flavor of the nutritious vegetables  and encourages the feeling of fullness.   Keep in  mind also, that the focus of the Mediterranean diet  isn't to limit total fat consumption, but to make  wise choices about the types of fat you eat‐ the  better choices being olive oil, canola oil, walnuts,  and pine nuts. 

The VEGAN Mediterranean Diet:
by Christine Watson, MS, RD

Vegetables, such as roasted eggplant, fresh greens  sautéed with garlic, tomatoes with basil & olive oil,  are what really make the VEGAN Mediterranean  diet very appealing.  Fruits, such as fresh berries  sprinkled over a salad, cinnamon‐baked apples with  walnuts are healthy and flavorful, too!  Add to it  the grains, such as risotto, whole‐grain pasta, or  whole‐grain crusty bread from a local bakery and  you have a delicious meal.  Wash it all down with a  glass of rich and robust red wine and…voila &  enjoy!     The Author    Christine Watson, MS, RD, has  been teaching nutrition, health  and wellness since 1992. She is a  registered dietitian, nutritionist,  and certified wellness coach. As  the owner of Compassionate  Nutritionist, LLC, Christine’s goal  for her clients is to help them incorporate healthy  vegetarian eating and green living practices into  their busy lives. To learn more about the services  and products offered by Christine and subscribe to  her “Compassionate Living” ezine where you’ll  receive a FREE copy of her Healthy & Eco‐conscious  7‐day Menu w/recipes included, visit the company  website at www.CompassionateNutritionist.com  or  email Christine at  Christine@CompassionateNutritionist.com.  

 

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|24

Vegan Pocketbook Power!
By Mindy Kursban, Esq.
As a lawyer, I  recognize the  importance that  laws play in  changing the  way our society  treats farm  animals.  However,  relying on the law to bring about change puts all  the power in the hands of the government to  address the problem – to pass the law, to enforce  it, and to penalize the violators. This can be a slow  and laborious process. As a consumer, I know that  using the power of my pocketbook will speed up  these changes.       Until recently, the law was virtually silent about  how animals raised for food are treated. The  decisions about how those sausage links, grilled  chicken breasts, cheeseburgers, and scrambled  eggs got to your plate have been up to the Animal  Agriculture Industry – the very companies that  raise the 10 billion cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys  and other animals each year for human  consumption. With no government intervention  and little consumer awareness, the Animal  Agriculture Industry set up purely profit‐based  factory farms with no moral concerns, paving the  animals’ path from their birth to our dinner with  systematic abuse. Standard abuses include extreme  confinement, forced urination and defecation in  the confined living spaces, painful mutilations such  as castration, tail docking, and beak searing  without anesthesia, and a diet full of antibiotics,  hormones, and other chemicals. Things are not  much better for animals raised “humanely,” “cage‐ free” or “organically.” (See  www.farmsanctuary.org/issues/campaigns/truth_b ehind_labeling.html)    Laws are being enacted that take incremental steps  forward to address this unimaginable cruelty. With  no federal law that protects animals on the farm, in  2002, states began stepping up to the proverbial  plate. Since then, Florida and Oregon have banned  the confinement of pregnant pigs in gestation  crates. Gestation crates are narrow metal  enclosures barely bigger than the pregnant pigs  who are confined in them during their nearly four‐ month pregnancies. With their piglets taken away  and raised for eventual human consumption,  breeding pigs’ lives are a continual cycle of birth  and reimpregnation, until they too are slaughtered.     Arizona, Colorado, and Maine have banned both  gestation crates and the confinement of calves in  veal crates. Veal crates are wooden crates  measuring a little more than two‐feet wide in  which male calves who have been separated from  their mothers within the first few days of birth will  be tethered and confined for about 16 weeks until  they are sent to slaughter.     Both California and Michigan have passed laws  requiring that factory farms provide enough space  for breeding pigs, veal calves, and egg‐laying hens  to stand up, turn around, and extend their limbs.  Laying hens are birds used for their eggs who are  typically confined for their entire lives with several  other birds in tiny “battery” cages without enough  room to spread a single wing. California has also  passed a law to ban the tail “docking” of dairy  cows, the partial amputation of up to two‐thirds of  a cow’s tail typically performed without anesthesia.     More legal protections for farm animals are  expected. We can look forward to new laws that  will further restrict how farm animals can be  treated as well as more states enacting laws similar  to those already passed.    

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|25

These legal changes forcing the Animal Agriculture  Industry to treat animals less cruelly will increase  the cost of meat, eggs, and dairy, since employing  methods that don’t account for the interests of the  animals is cheaper. Despite higher costs and even  without the force of law, some restaurant chains  like Chipotle, Wolfgang Puck’s, and Red Robin  Gourmet Burger have begun switching to cage‐free  eggs or have stopped serving pork from crated pigs  or veal from crated calves. In doing so, they pass on  the increased costs to consumers, absorb the costs,  or both. These corporate commitments to support  less cruel practices are commendable, but they are  not enough. All restaurants can minimize the  predictable financial impact of legal restrictions on  factory farming by thinking outside the box.     Rather than just purchasing from suppliers that no  longer engage in the most abusive practices,  restaurants should add tasty and well‐prepared  plant‐based menu items and revamp current  offerings to make them vegan. Doing so can be  profitable.     It’s impossible not to notice the growing number of  consumers interested in vegetarian and vegan  eating. A 2008 Vegetarian Times study found that  10 percent of US adults say they largely follow a  vegetarian‐inclined diet and, of the non‐ vegetarians surveyed, 5.2 percent are “definitely  interested” in following a vegetarian‐based diet in  the future. A walk through the supermarket – and I  don’t just mean Whole Foods – displays a  continually increasing array of vegan products. The  number of all‐vegetarian and vegan restaurants  across the country is rising. A visit to any  mainstream bookstore reveals the expanding  presence of vegan cookbooks.    Given that Americans consume  billions of restaurant meals  annually, vegan‐friendly menu  changes will save the lives of  countless animals. Olive Garden,  for example, has eliminated veal  from its menu but essentially just added more  chicken items. What about enticing customers with  a delicious seitan picata? Dunkin’ Donuts, which is  currently the subject of a campaign by the 
Food from the Middle East

nonprofit advocacy group Compassion Over Killing  (www.cok.com) to remove eggs and dairy from its  donuts, could adapt its recipes to make them  vegan with a little R&D investment. This step would  be similar to Kraft‐owned Boca Burgers’ recent  decision to eliminate eggs from its entire line of  already‐vegetarian products.     Mexican restaurants should add tofu and seitan  burrito fillings, soy cheese, and soy sour cream.  Veggie burgers should be a staple at every fast‐ food restaurant. Restaurants that serve soup can  offer at least one vegan soup, such as split pea,  black bean, or lentil. Pizza joints should dish up soy  cheese pizza – similar to what the chain ZPizza has  done. Ice creameries can serve non‐dairy ice  cream, such as Turtle Mountain’s Purely Decadent  soy‐ and coconut‐milk‐based ice creams. All  restaurants can hire chefs skilled in the proper  preparation and appealing flavoring of vegetables.  The possibilities, and the resulting revenues, are  endless.     Changes in consumer spending – in effect,  harnessing our economic power — can propel this  change forward. It’s surprisingly easy. When you  eat out, simply choose a restaurant that has vegan  options – and then order them. If you want to do  more, ask restaurants to put a small vegan symbol  beside plant‐based menu items. Even if a  restaurant already has vegan options, ask them to  add your favorite to their menu. Your favorite  might be the reason someone else decides to eat  at that restaurant. Politely tell restaurants without  vegan options why you won’t eat there. Visit  restaurant websites to email suggestions for vegan  options. Approach the managers of local branches  of chain restaurants – many of which are  franchises – with requests to add vegan  options to their line‐ups. If they agree,  make sure you patronize their stores and  encourage others to do the same. These  same ideas can alter the food offerings in  supermarkets, convenience stores, movie  theaters, caterers, online merchants, or  any other place you buy food.     When wrongdoing confronts us head on, like it  does with factory farming, it is comfortable to 
December 2009|26

ignore it or place full responsibility on the  government to fix the problem. Failure to also  examine how changes in our behavior can fix the  problem, though, is to surrender. Each of us is  empowered to create the change we want to see in  the world. Put your money where your mouth. Buy  vegan.     The Author    Mindy Kursban is a  practicing attorney who is  passionate about animals,  food, and health. She  gained her experience and  knowledge about vegan  cuisine and the law while  working for ten years as  general counsel and then executive director of the  Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.  Since leaving PCRM in 2007, Mindy has been  writing and speaking to help others make the  switch to a plant‐based diet. Look for her website in  the near future: www.veg‐curious.com. Contact  Mindy now at mkursban@aol.com.     

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|27

An Interview with Host and Author Toni Fiore!
   

Please tell us a bit about yourself!    I was born in Germany and spent the better part of  my growing years in Italy. My mother is German my  father Italian so it was a real mix of cuisines in our  house. Life at home and with extended family  centered around home cooking and casual  socializing over a table of simple yet delicious food.   In Italy we would always shop at the local outdoor  fruit and vegetable markets, so it was fairly early  on that I became interested in regional seasonal  cooking and food in general.  My culinary  experiences in Italy were invaluable in shaping my  style, perspective and inherent flexibility in  preparing food when I became a vegetarian more  than 25 years ago. Currently I live in the outskirts of  Portland Maine.     What is Delicious TV and how did you get started?    Delicious TV is a cooking and lifestyle media  company that produces my show  TotallyVegetarian. Totally Vegetarian has now  branched out into a web series of  short weekly  vegan recipes called Delicious TV Veg. So far we’ve  had over a million downloads on iTunes and  another seven hundred thousand on the website.  New episodes can be seen at www.delicioustv.com.  

  When I was living in Italy I wasn’t particularly active  in any social or political movements involving  animals because there were virtually no  organizations promoting change. When I moved to  Maine in 1986 I was inspired by an ad to ban veal  crates and shortly after I found and subsequently  joined a statewide organization called Maine  Animal Coalition (MAC). There I met and became  friends with Kate Kaminski who was the President  of the organization. I became extremely focused  and passionate about the plight of farm animals  which naturally led to my becoming a vegetarian  and promoting plant based eating. Eventually Kate  moved on and I became the President of MAC.     After about fifteen years of working with MAC I  was ready for a new challenge and left.  At a MAC  reunion in the fall of 2002 I reconnected with Kate  who became a filmmaker and her partner Betsy  Carson, also a filmmaker. Over a few glasses of  wine we chatted about the distinct lack of  vegetarian cooking instruction and programming  on television. We decided that afternoon we would  produce a 30 minute episode about vegetarian  holiday cooking and I would host.  Two and half  years later we had 13 episodes and we were on  Public Television. Last year we finished our 52’nd  
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episode of ‘Totally Vegetarian’.   So far the show  has aired in seventy five million households twenty  six thousand times.  The companion cookbook came out in the fall of  2008 and the paperback was just released last  month. 

What is the core philosophy behind  Delicious TV’s  Totally Vegetarian (aside from being vegan)?    To demonstrate the importance of eating a plant  based diet for ones health, the environment, and  animals. And to show how easy, healthy, and  delicious vegan  cooking can be.     Pasta e Fagioli How have changes  Serves 4  with internet media    affected you since  The Italian side of my family in America always prepared this thick dense soup  you started?  with a rich tomato base. When I moved to Italy, I was struck by how different    the Italian version was; they were utilizing the same basic ingredients, but in  When we started,  different increments at different stages, resulting in a lighter version. This is  really the only  my mother’s version, and my favorite. The thick soup of beans and pasta can  venue we were  be put together in minutes, making it perfect for a last minute supper or quick  focused on was  hearty lunch. I usually add short tubular pasta like ditalini, but if I don’t have  television. Every  that on hand, broken spaghetti makes a respectable replacement. Serve with  year the effort and  a few turns of black pepper, and a drizzle of fruity olive oil.  money involved to    produce, air and  3‐4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil    1 medium yellow onion, finely diced  promote the  1 celery stalk , finely diced    1 carrot, finely diced  program becomes  Salt, to taste        2 garlic cloves, chopped  more challenging.  1 tsp. minced rosemary     3 sage leaves, minced  The availability of  ½ tsp. dried oregano  internet  One 15½‐ounce can organic cannellini beans, drained and rinsed    programming and  1 cup canned San Marzano tomatoes, crushed  podcasting has  2 cups cooked pasta, such as ditalini  Freshly ground black pepper, to taste  broadened our    viewership and  Heat the oil in a stockpot or Dutch oven over medium‐high heat. Add the  allows us to provide  onion, celery, carrot, and a pinch of salt and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the  on demand content  garlic and cook, stirring, until the carrots are firm‐tender. Add the rosemary,  worldwide  to  sage, and oregano and blend. Add the beans, tomatoes, and 3 cups water.  vegetarians, vegans  Bring to a boil and quickly lower to a simmer. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes until  or people interested  the vegetables are tender. I use my immersion blender and partially puree  in healthy eating.  the soup to add thickness and body, but this isn’t necessary. Season with salt    and pepper, spoon the hot soup over the cooked pasta, and serve hot.      Recipe by Toni Fiore     

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What trials have you had to overcome with  getting your show launched and your book  published and how did you accomplish that?    The obstacle is lack of financial support.   Our  passion, and persistence to continue on a  modest  budget landed us a cookbook deal.  And we’ve  been blessed to have the support of  non‐profit  donors along the way.    The biggest obstacle to overcome has been  maintaining the energy to keep moving forward  despite the fact that we have had little to no  support financially or otherwise. We believe deeply  about the importance of our work in promoting  plant based eating. The future for us has always  been uncertain but we do the best we can and are  determined to keep moving forward despite our  modest budget! We’ve been blessed to have the  support of a few donors along the way.     As far as the cookbook goes, my agent contacted  me after seeing the show in New York. Within two  years I was offered a cookbook deal. I’m currently  working on content for another book.     How do you decide which recipes to include in  your shows and books?    Because I am passionate about delicious food and  equally passionate about easy preparation I like to  focus on recipes that accommodate both. I began  by drawing recipes from my Mediterranean  background and then moved on to veganizing  recipes that were more common and familiar to  the general population. I’ve found that people have  very traditional ideas about what they like and how  much time they are willing or able to spend in the  kitchen. I like to work within those parameters so  that my viewers and cookbook readers don’t feel  particularly challenged. One of the most frequent 

comments we receive is how great the food is and  how easy it was to prepare.    Italian cuisine has a bad reputation for being meat  and cheese heavy.  Do you find that reputation  justified and how does your Italian heritage play  into your own cuisine?    I have to begin by stressing that Italian cuisine here  in America is very different than true Italian cuisine  in Italy. Italian American cooking, like most things  in America, focuses on much larger portions,  cheaper ingredients and does rely heavily on  cheese, cream and meats. When southern Italians  immigrated to America the type of food and the  seasonality of the food was radically different. You  might find some basic similarities in the foundation  of the ingredients, however the cuisine, like the  Italian spoken in New York, evolved into something  quite unique. When I talk to people who have  traveled throughout Italy they are always amazed  at the difference in the food and cooking. Having  lived in Italy for so many years and traveling back  at least once a year I am able to share with viewers  how easy, light, economical and healthy true  Mediterranean cuisine can be.       What do you like to eat at home?  (please share  the recipe!)    Because I live alone, I have lapsed into being a soup  eater. I love soups and stews, one pot three meals!  One of my favorite fast easy and flexible recipes is  Pasta Fagioli. It’s not fancy but I’ve always loved  this soup.     What are your plans for the near future?  What  exciting projects do you have coming up?    We are very excited and currently developing an  application for the iPhone. So I am pulling together 

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recipe content for that. I plan on continuing with  cooking classes and of course more weekly three  minute recipes for our  iTunes broadcast, Delicious  TV Veg! I really love doing the podcast.    Do you have any advice for aspiring  authors/cooking show hosts?    I’d have to say that breaking into mainstream  media in any form is really hard work. Find good  people to work with, be clear about your goals and  content and keep your heart and soul in your work.     Thanks Toni!    Contact     You can see Chef Toni Fiore, her recipes, and her  show at www.delicioustv.com. 

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An Interview with M. Butterflies Katz

What led you to poetry?  Was there an  inspirational moment that brought you there or a  slow series of falling in love with it?    A close friend and mentor used to recite poetry  from some of the great minds in history; one of  them was a poetess who lived over a hundred  years ago, named Ella Wheeler Wilcox. I loved how  she used poetry as a way to express poignant  messages. I was inspired to attempt that concept,  with using a more ‘up to date’ language.  I’ve not  written a poem in quite some time; though I’m  mesmerized by words that rhyme.    What influences you the most when you are at  your best?    Safety, serenity and solitude… amongst mountains  of trees, flowing meadow brooks, flowers,  butterflies…at home in God’s world.     Do you find yourself gravitating towards  particular topics and is there a set of philosophical  principles that guide your writing?    The topics of my poems are animal, environmental  and human rights. My philosophy is to tell the  Truth (with a capital T). My poetry is just another,  maybe more eloquent, form of sharing insights I’ve  learned through the years. I write when I’m in a  more spiritually tuned‐in, frame of mind. I write for  the benefit of others, and also for myself. The 
Food from the Middle East

book’s title says it all: Metamorphosis; Poems to  Inspire Transformation. When I need some  inspiration, I can read my own book.    How does being vegan play into your poetry?      Being a staunch vegan for over 3 decades, it plays  into every aspect of my life. It is strongly tied in  with my purpose in life and thus I use poetry as one  more means of spreading the vegan message.   It is very evident in my poetry that I come from a  vegan‐point‐of‐view. Some poems are literally  about The Vegan Ideal. I have many things I would  want to tell the world, but veganism is the  strongest thing I want to voice, in order to help  stop the cruel enslavement and exploitation we  inflict on nonhuman animals. I want people to  become vegan; poetry is just another way to try to  get the message across. I also write articles, and  other activism.    What brought you to veganism?    Over 40 years ago, my brother, in an attempt to get  my dinner, told me that the tongue on the table  was, in fact, the tongue of a dead cow. It was not  disguised, and easy to see he was telling the truth. I  never ate meat again. It was harder in those pre‐ internet days to educate myself, so I remained a  vegetarian until I was 21 when I saw an AHIMSA  magazine published by The American Vegan  Society. (31 years ago) I was inspired by the 
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founder; Jay Dinshah’s excellent writing and  learned the horror of dairy, leather, etc. and  became vegan. My vegan perspective was  heightened by the Gentle World non‐profit  educational organization and family. I was so  inspired by their point of view, so much so, that I  stayed and never left! I’m fortunate to be able to  say that I’ve surrounded myself with vegans my  entire adult life.  My veganism keeps evolving, as I  do.    How has your poetry affected the people around  you?  What is the strongest reaction you’ve had  from a reader of your poems?      Just the other day, someone emailed that her sister  became vegan from one of my poems that speaks  about the feminist issue of dairy consumption. Her  sister, who is a feminist, chose to become vegan  from seeing it from that angle. What better  reaction could I possibly have from a poem?    Can you share one of your poems with us?    Right on cue…I will share the above mentioned  poem…    www.veganpoet.com/animals/because‐im‐ female.htm     Now, on to food!  What do you like to eat when  you’re at home?  (please share the recipe!)    I don’t use recipes. I eat very simply these days.  After all these years of eating vegan and preparing  gourmet meals, sometimes I like to eat very simply.  Just some nuts or a piece of fruit or a green drink!  Whatever cooked food I eat, I steam it or cook it  and then add oil afterwards (so I don’t cook the  oil), and flavor with tamari and Nutritional Yeast.  Then, there are times, when I have to have comfort  foods and will prepare gourmet dishes or vegan 

baked goods (with cooked oil). After baking so  long, I have come to learn the correct consistency  of cookies, etc. and hardly use recipes anymore; it  just comes naturally. I have done a lot of vegan  food preparation in my day! I was a main chef at  The Vegan Restaurant (on Maui) when owned by  Gentle World. I compiled, tested, edited, (and  created many of) the recipes for Incredibly  Delicious: Recipes for a New Paradigm by Gentle  World.   www.gentleworld.org/incredibly.html    The book has over 500 recipes, and a large raw  food section too. Of recent, I’ve become addicted  to green drinks; fresh squeezed orange juice  and/or other fruit juice, a banana (frozen is nice or  fresh and ripe), a piece of fruit and a couple of  handfuls of dark greens, blended into a green  smoothie (with ice or without). I feel like I’m giving  my body high octane fuel. It’s important to get the  nourishment that dark greens give us. We need to  keep healthy in order to be a good example of the  vegan lifestyle.     The following recipe has been a favorite at our  restaurant and all our vegan outreach events:  (Raw)Carrot‐Cashew Pate  serves 3‐4  2 carrots, peeled and chopped  1 celery stalk, chopped (optional)  2‐3 cloves garlic, diced  1‐2 slices of sweet onion (Vidalia,  Walla Walla)  1 cup cashews, soaked for 15 minutes   sea salt or substitute, to taste  ¼ cup cold‐pressed olive (or other) oil  1. In a food processor, using the S‐ shaped blade, blend the vegetables to  a fine consistency.   2.  Drain the water from the cashews.   Add them to the processor and 
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process along with the remaining  ingredients.  Stop periodically and  scrape the sides with a rubber  spatula.    3.  Continue to blend until creamy.   4.  Chill until it solidifies and serve as a  dip, a side dish or as a spread for  wraps, etc.  How do you entice non‐vegans into trying vegan  cuisine?      By introducing with foods they already like, such as  pasta and potatoes, and by making it delectable!  That is the key factor. We had lines out the door at  our restaurant. These were not all vegans; patrons  ranged from ‘big meat‐eating truck driver’ to  ‘Hawaiian hippy’ to locals. They loved the food  because it was delicious.  Vegans are not deprived!  We can make any gourmet dish into a vegan  version and they are delicious, and far more  nutritious.  We don’t need to nor should we  impose misery on other sentient beings just to  satisfy taste buds. It takes perhaps a couple of  weeks to learn the basic foods of plant‐based  cuisine. It’s easy! Then you will look back and  wonder how you could have ever cooked with  blood dripping and dismembered body parts and  all the greasy clean‐up.    There’s lots of online help and free vegan starter  kits. My website has an excellent Vegan Links page  at http://veganpoet.com/links.htm    For some vegan inspiration, I’m working on a  project which is a good resource tool. It’s called   Vegan Voices Around the World, seen here:  http://veganpoet.com/veganvoices/    What is the most fun experience you’ve had in the  kitchen?   
Food from the Middle East

All the many, many fun and rewarding experiences  of turning people onto delicious vegan food, all  wrapped up into one experience, was a highlight of  my life. Coming up with vegan companion animal  meals was a fun use of our vegan kitchens! I was  motivated to become an excellent vegan chef  solely as a means of enticing people (and  nonhumans) to become vegan.    What new projects do you have on the horizon?    Projects just seem to keep appearing in my life. I  live in the moment, so not sure what is next, stay  tuned. Check my website: www.veganpoet.com   for heaps of vegan information and resources; it’s  NOT just poetry!    If there is anything I didn’t cover that you would  like to talk about, please feel free to do so!    A statement of my position: Veganism is the purest  form of animal rights activism; it’s 24/7.  Veganism  is a philosophy for those who want to rise above  unjust mindsets (such as racism, ageism, sexism)  and in this case; speciesism. Veganism is a stance  that is a universal protest to slavery.     Vegans do not pay someone to rape, enslave,  exploit, and then murder other sentient beings.  Veganism is a panacea; a solution to many of our  planetary problems. The vegan lifestyle has many  benefits to human health, relieving human hunger,  and most importantly saving the animals!     Veganic gardening is the most sustainable and does  not support the system by using slaughterhouse  products. Farmed animals are reaping havoc on our  environment causing much degradation, including  deforestation, water pollution, and possibly the  biggest contributor to global warming; possibly our  most serious problem. Veganism is a Great Truth;  as it has the potential to benefit the ‘betterment of 

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the whole’. Humanity has been misguided by  society and needs to re‐educate themselves – and  then go vegan!    M. Butterflies Katz, aka Vegan Poet  (www.veganpoet.com) is the co‐author of  Incredibly Delicious; Recipes for a New Paradigm by  Gentle World. She is the author of Metamorphosis:  Poems to Inspire Transformation by Vegan Poet.  She has been a volunteer member of Gentle World,  Inc for over a quarter of a century, where she has  been actively promoting the many benefits of the  vegan lifestyle. Butterflies is a veganic gardener  and a vegan‐dog innovator!    She published articles on vegan related topics and  is a regular contributor to The Vegan Voice  magazine in Australia, as well as other vegan  journals, websites and on Facebook.     

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Restaurant Review: Pita Jungle
Reviewer: Madelyn Pryor  
Pita Jungle – Arrowhead Location  7530 W. Bell Rd, Suite 106  Glendale, AZ 85308  623‐486‐2615  Hours:  10:30 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. everyday  www.pitajungle.com   Pita Jungle is one of those names that almost every  vegan in Arizona knows. It is a chain of ten  restaurants that now includes locations in Flagstaff,  Scottsdale Fashion Square and Candler. However,  all the Pita Jungles are a little different from each  other. I am not taking petty things like decorations,  though each store’s unique look is fun, I am  referring to the fact that each restaurant has  slightly different menu items from each other. For  the purposes of this review I will just examine the  Arrowhead location, which is on 75th Ave and Bell,  in Peoria.     The restaurant is not the biggest, but far from the  smallest. It has a wonderful collection of tables and  booths that guarantee that someone can easily find  their preference. The massive amount of windows  make the area feel spacious, and there is a rotating  collection of artwork on the walls, most of which is  for sale. However, there are a few caveats that the  average vegan should be aware of before driving  over.     Yes, Pita Jungle is vegan friendly. They have several  delicious vegan dishes, such as the 1000 Bean Pita,  the Falafel Pita, and several types of hummus.  Their tabouli is the best I have ever eaten, and  worth the trip simply on its own merit. That is the  good news.     The bad news of this location is that the baba  ganoush is NOT vegan. They add yogurt. This is not  apparent from the menu and most vegans are used  to this being a vegan dish. When Chef Jason wrote  the chain and complained, they just said there  were several ways to make this dish and they  opted for one with yogurt. Basically, they don’t  plan on changing, so tough if that is not something  you can eat. In a word, ouch. [editor’s note:  My  primary complaint was that Pita Jungle did not list  this traditionally vegan item as having yogurt and  their response flippantly informed me to check the  menu for items that contain dairy.  An odd  response from the restaurant considering that the  menu listing for the baba ganoush happens to omit  the fact that it contains dairy.  You can contact the  restaurant about this at  http://www.pitajungle.com/index.cfm/contactUs]     I have also experienced some odd pricing,  depending on the server. Most servers there are  sweet, wonderful, and attentive. They’ll even give  you to go cups for your tea or lemonade to take  into the blistering Arizona heat. However, one time  I asked for a few extra pickles for my falafel. I was  shocked to see a seventy‐five cent charge on my  bill. That had never happened before. Another  time, I asked for some soy sauce for a side of  veggies I ordered, and I got smacked with another  seventy‐five cent charge. It all depends on the  server, and the random nature of the charges is  frustrating.     But, before you think it is all gloom and doom, it is  not. They also have generous sides of sautéed  vegetables for around four dollars, that are  amazing and filling. A side of fruit comes in a large  cereal bowl. I can eat a lot of food but a side of  veggies and a side of fruit is too filling for me. The  tropical iced tea has free refills and is addictive and 

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their homemade lemonade is just tart enough to  be interesting, and also comes with free refills.     All in all, it is worth the time and effort to check out  Pita Jungle if you haven’t already. Always ask about  what is included in the ingredients, and ask to  make substitutions. Sometimes you can, and the  experience is worth it.     SIDENOTE: If you go to the Chandler location on  Ray and Dobson, you will notice it is by a lake.  There are over one hundred ducks that make that  lake their home. Please order an extra pita and go  out to give the ducks a snack. You will be very glad  that you did.       
                                     

The Reviewer  Madelyn ‘the Reviewer’  Pryor is one of  Amazon.com’s top 1500  reviewers, and a certified  Vine Voice. She also gets  several requests every day to review books, movies, and  graphic novels from various publishers including Harper‐ Collins. That means that people really want Madelyn’s  advice and opinion, which is fine with her, because it  makes it that much easier for her to enact her plans for  world domination. Those plans currently involve taking  a break from her Masters of Psychology program to be  the Sous Chef for the Vegan Culinary Experience. You  can reach her at  madelyn@veganculinaryexperience.com.  

 

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Product Review: Yummy Earth Organic Candy
Reviewer: Madelyn Pryor 
    Yummy Earth   http://www.yummyearth.com/index.html Ridgewood, New Jersey    Can be purchased at: Sprouts, Whole  Foods, Amazon.com and Yummy Earth  Website  Price: $3.50 – 1.99 depending on the store  and the sale  Special Information: All products are  vegan, soy free, gluten free and between  11 to 22 calories a candy.    
   

  There are some things that vegans stop eating. We  all know that vegans askew animal products,  because that is why we are vegan. But a growing  number of vegans also choose to eliminate artificial  colors and flavors. There are a few reasons for this.  Some commercial dyes, actually contain insects  and other dyes and flavors are animal tested. But if  your sweet tooth is activated and you feel like a  quick, delicious candy bite 99.99% of commercial  products contain artificial color, flavor, or sugar.  Ewwww! Luckily for us, there is Yummy Earth.     Yummy Earth Candy was founded by two fathers  who wanted to feed their children only good,  delicious foods that could be made at home.  Therefore, Yummy Earth candies are 100% organic  and are made from only plants. The beautiful, rich  color of a Tooberry Blueberry comes from black  carrots and black currants. Those ingredients are so  gourmet that most people would feel thrilled to eat  them and when they’re included in candy… even  better! Lately, Yummy Earth has also added  Vitamin C pops, and Antioxidant Pops, so you can  get even more health benefits while you have a  treat. Moreover, not only are all the products 100%  vegan, they are gluten free, corn syrup free, nut 
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free, GMO free, and manufactured in a plant that is  tree nut and peanut free. The candy drops are all  11 calories, and the pops are 22 calories. If eaten in  moderation, they are a low calorie tasty treat.     And tasty these candies are! Yummy Earth had  several flavors from the common favorites to the  exotic. Some of my favorites are Chili Mango  Mambo, Wild Peppermint, Roadside Rootbeer,  Blood Orange Cocktail, Lucky Lime, Cheeky Lemon,  RazzMatazz Raspberry, Tooberry Blueberry, and  Strawberry Smash. Currently, Yummy Earth has  about 20 flavors, but they come out with new  temptations frequently. There are also a number of  packing options available from the economical to  the elegant. Yummy Earth has teamed with  Artisanal Candy to offer artisan packing for all its  flavors. These packages are perfect for gift giving  and at $5.00 a package (on Yummy Earth’s website)  they are a stylish but affordable option for holiday  gift giving. Plus, it’s always nice to give a gift that  will not only be appreciated, but is also healthy for  the gift giver.     Yummy Earth candies are one of the best things  out there, so grab a few packages and try them out  for yourself. You’ll be glad that you did.  
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The Reviewer    Madelyn ‘the Reviewer’  Pryor is one of  Amazon.com’s top 1500  reviewers, and a certified  Vine Voice. She also gets  several requests every day to review books, movies,  and graphic novels from various publishers  including Harper‐Collins. That means that people  really want Madelyn’s advice and opinion, which is  fine with her, because it makes it that much easier  for her to enact her plans for world domination.  Those plans currently involve taking a break from  her Masters of Psychology program to be the Sous  Chef for the Vegan Culinary Experience. You can  reach her at  madelyn@veganculinaryexperience.com.    

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  Book Review: The Sublime Resturant Cookbook
Author: Nanci Alexander
Reviewer: Madelyn Pryor 
    Unless you live in Florida, chances are that you  have not had a chance to go to the Sublime  Restaurant and have some yummy vegan food in  person. If you have not been, you’re in good  company because I have never been to the east  coast at all. For us, Nanci Alexander, the founder of  Sublime, has provided this cookbook with most of  her famous dishes in it.     What type of food might you expect? There is a  range of food, most of elegant and high end. The  sushi rolls alone are intriguing. I love the sound of  the Yin Yang Roll, with its black rice and soy cream  cheese. The Sublime Roll with aioli and scallions  sounds good, too. I confess that I didn’t actually try  to make either of these or any of the other sushi  rolls, because mine always come out as Asian  scramble. This is not a reflection of the recipes, it’s  a reflection of my sushi skills (as in, I have none). If  you’ve been looking for some creative sushi recipes  however, this might just be the book for you.     There are also a host of creative and fun pizza  recipes. Seven Layer Pizza is a new take on a  snacking favorite, Seven Layer Dip. Pesto Pizza is  always good, so if you have not tried it before, then  get to it and try some out! There is a recipe in here  to help you out with that, too. The Florentine Pizza  intrigued me the most, with tofu ricotta and  spinach. However, the inclusion of Forest  Mushroom Pizza and Pizza Margherita left me a  little baffled, because they are fairly common.  
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Author:  Nanci Alexander  Publisher:  Book Publishing                        Company  Copyright:  2009  ISBN:  978‐1‐57067‐227‐9  Price:  $19.95    This book isn’t all sushi and pizza. There are a fair  smattering of traditional favorites and things that  the average vegan may not have tried before, like  Mushroom Ceviche – a mix of citrus, oyster  mushrooms and other tasty things.     But when I sat down to write this review, I couldn’t  really think of what to say. When I thought of what  I liked about the book it was that it was printed on  recycled paper using vegetable ink, and that Nanci  Alexander donates all profits from Sublime to  animals. You’ll notice that neither one of these is  actually the food in the cookbook. I couldn’t figure  out what this meant about the food, so I kept  staring at the book, pouring through its pages,  trying to unlock the mystery… and then I realized  what it all meant. As both a cook of sixteen years  and a vegan of five years, this cookbook doesn’t  inspire me to get in the kitchen. It has a few recipes  I might try, but I love cookbooks that make me  claw at the pictures on the page, drooling, willing  the food to be made manifest so I can stuff it in my  greedy face. This doesn’t do that for me. I don’t  really hate the book either. I wouldn’t buy it from  the bookstore, but I won’t sell it to the used  bookstore. It just… is. What I would recommend is  checking this book out before you buy it. Check it  out at the bookstore while you have an overpriced  iced soy coffee, or snag one at the library. Just  don’t pay $20 of your hard earned money without  looking through it and deciding if this book inspires  you.  
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The Reviewer    Madelyn ‘the Reviewer’  Pryor is one of  Amazon.com’s top 1500  reviewers, and a certified  Vine Voice. She also gets  several requests every day to review books, movies,  and graphic novels from various publishers  including Harper‐Collins. That means that people  really want Madelyn’s advice and opinion, which is  fine with her, because it makes it that much easier  for her to enact her plans for world domination.  Those plans currently involve taking a break from  her Masters of Psychology program to be the Sous  Chef for the Vegan Culinary Experience. You can  reach her at  madelyn@veganculinaryexperience.com.    

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                Click on any of the recipes in the index to take you to the relevant recipe.  Some recipes will  have large white sections after the instructional portion of them.  This is so you need only print  out the ingredient and instructional sections for ease of kitchen use. 

Recipe Index

 

Recipe 
Drinks  Turkish Coffee  Cardamom Cinnamon Tea  Finjan Erfeh  Rose Petal Tea    Appetizers, Sides, & Breads  Arroz Mofalfal (Baked Rice)  Dolmas  Pita  Saudi Sambousak  Yalanchi  Pomegranate Dengaku  Cucumber Pizzas    Main Dishes  Falafels  Fava Bean Stew  Ful Medammes  Flatbread Pizza  Imam Bayildi (Stuffed Eggplant)  Kosharee  Mushroom Biryani  Orange Olive Couscous  Scabeg  Shawarma Spiced Veggies  Shish Kebabs  Tabouleh with Pine Nuts  Fattoush  Veggie Kebobs with Red Miso  Marinade  Pasta e Fagioli           

Page
  43  47  50  54      57  61  66  70  75  15  18      79  83  87  91  95  100  105  110  114  118  123  127  13  15  29 

   

Recipe 
Sauces and Dips  Babaganoush  Dukkah  Harissa  Hummus  Muhamarra  Taratoor Sauce  Raw Carrot Cashew Pate  Edamame Hummous  Blueberry Wasabi Sauce  Creamy Tzatziki  Nut Yogurt    Soups  Freekah Soup  Jalik  Mercimek Corbasi  Shawrbat Adas Majroosha (Pureed  Lentil Soup)  Shorba Hummus (Chickpea Soup)  Tarato    Desserts  Baklava  Boughasha  Egyptian Couscous  Halwa  Künefe  Moroccan Cookies  Poached Quince  Urfa Biber Cakes with Turkish  Coffee  Coco Choco Heaven             

Page
  131  135  139  140  144  148  33  15  16  19  19      152  156  160  164    168  172      176  181  186  190  194  197  199  202    18 

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Turk Kahvesi (Turkish Coffee)
Type: Drink Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 10 minutes

1 cup of water 1 tbsp. of finely ground coffee

Ingredients

Option: ¼ tsp. of ground cardamom Option: 1 tsp., 2 tsp., or 4 tsp. of sugar Instructions

Mix all the ingredients together, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Pour these in a pot just big enough to contain the liquid. Over a medium heat, bring the coffee to a boil. Once it is boiling, remove it from the heat, allowing it to sit for about 20 seconds. Repeat this two or three times and then serve. Serve immediately.

has dissolved, add the coffee and cardamom, heating it as above.

Optional Method: Heat the water until. As soon as it is warm, stir in the sugar. Once the sugar Sweetness Level: Sade means no sweetener, az sekerli is about ½ tsp. of sugar per cup of water,

orta sekerli is about 1 tsp. of sugar per cup of water, cok sekerli is about 2 tsp. of sugar per cup of water.

The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Kitchen Equipment
Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Stirring Spoon Small Pot Small Cups

Presentation
This is traditionally served in tiny cups and the coffee grounds are allowed to settle before the coffee is consumed. The more foam in the coffee the better. One method to maximize the level of foam is to slowly raise the pot as you pour the coffee into the cups. The coffee is also meant to be consumed very hot and water is sometimes served just before the coffee as a palate cleanser.

Time Management
This coffee takes little time to prepare and is best when fresh.

Complementary Food and Drinks
This goes very well with baklava and bird’s nests.

Where to Shop
The ingredients are fairly common. Obviously, the better quality the coffee beans, the better

quality the coffee.

How It Works
The fine grind on the coffee exposes quite a bit of surface area to the water, which rapidly infuses
The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

the water with the coffee. The water is removed from the heat as soon as it boils so that the coffee

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does not burn. With the second heating technique, mixing the sugar into the hot water raises the boiling temperature of the water before the coffee is even added. It creates a stronger, but slightly more bitter coffee.

Chef’s Notes
A well done Turkish coffee has an intense flavor without being harsh, a problem which happens when coffee is over brewed. In fact, I used to dislike coffee until I had my first cup of Turkish coffee!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories n/a Fat n/a Total Carbohydrates n/a Dietary Fiber n/a Sugars varies Protein n/a Salt n/a Vitamin A n/a Vitamin B6 n/a Vitamin C n/a Calcium n/a Iron n/a Thiamin n/a Riboflavin n/a Niacin n/a Folate n/a Phosphorous n/a Potassium n/a Zinc n/a Magnesium n/a Copper n/a
The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Calories from Fat n/a

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Interesting Facts
Although this is called Turkish coffee, this style of coffee is found all over the Middle East and Eastern Europe. In Arabic, the coffee is qahwa arabiyah. Coffee was introduced to the Middle East in the early 15th century.

The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

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Cardamom and Cinnamon Tea
Type: Drink Serves: 3 Time to Prepare: 12 minutes

3 cups of water 4 cinnamon sticks 6 whole green cardamom pods 1 tbsp. of sweet agave nectar

Ingredients

Instructions

Bring the water to a boil. Add in the cinnamon sticks and cardamom pods and reduce to a simmer. Simmer this for 10 minutes. Remove it from the heat and immediately strain it. Quickly stir in the sweet agave nectar.

The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Kitchen Equipment
Pot Measuring Cup Stirring Spoon Strainer Measuring Spoon

Presentation
Leave a cinnamon stick in each glass of tea and lightly sprinkle the saucer with cardamom.

Time Management
Don’t over brew this tea unless you like potent aromatic drinks.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with bread, olive oil, and a spice mix in which to dip the bread.

Where to Shop
Cardamom can be expensive unless you purchase it from a bulk spice jar, which can be found Sprouts, Central Market, and sometimes Whole Foods. Approximate cost per serving is $.50.

How It Works
The long simmer time is necessary to draw the flavor out of the cinnamon. The cardamom gives the tea a lighter note and the sweetness of the agave enhances both the cardamom and cinnamon flavors. Whole spices are used so they are easier to remove from the tea.

Chef’s Notes
This is a very simple version of masala chai and very much reminds me of Fall.
The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 64.0 (16.0) Calories from Fat 0.0 (0.0) Fat 0.0g (0.0g) Total Carbohydrates 16.0g (4.0g) Dietary Fiber 0.0g (0.0g) Sugars 16.0g (4.0g) Protein 0.0g (0.0g) Salt 0mg (0mg) Vitamin A 0% (0%) Vitamin B6 0% (0%) Vitamin C 0% (0%) Calcium 0% (0%) Iron 0% (0%) Thiamin 0% (0%) Riboflavin 0% (0%) Niacin 0% (0%) Folate 0% (0%) Phosphorous 0% (0%) Potassium 0% (0%) Zinc 0% (0%) Magnesium 0% (0%) Copper 0% (0%)

Interesting Facts
Cardamom isn’t just used as a spice, it is sometimes used medicinally and sometimes even smoked. Ground cardamom seeds quickly lose their flavor.

The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Finjan Erfeh (anise and ginger tea)
Type: Drin k Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 12 minutes

1 tbsp. of anise seeds (not ground) 2 whole cloves 2” piece of ginger, sliced 4 cups of water 2 cinnamon sticks 1 ½ tbsp. of sugar 4 almonds

Ingredients

Instructions

Place the cloves and anise seed in a tea ball. Slice the ginger. Bring the water to a boil. Add in all the ingredients and reduce it to a simmer Simmer it for 10 minutes and strain it. Pour the tea into 4 glasses and put one of the simmered almonds in each glass.

The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Kitchen Equipment
Tea Ball Pot Knife Cutting Boar Measuring Spoon Measuring Cup Strainer

Presentation
Choose a clear glass for the tea so the almond at the bottom of the cup is visible.

Time Management
This tea can be made ahead of time and then quickly reheated, meaning you can make this in large batches. It does not taste nearly as good cold, so make sure you take the time to warm it back up.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this as a dessert tea or between courses, but always serve it by itself.

Where to Shop
All the ingredients are easy to find, but you should try to purchase your spices from bulk jars to get the best price on them. Approximate cost per serving is $.50.

How It Works
The cloves and anise give a very strong aromatic quality to the tea while the ginger gives it quite a bit of bite. The cinnamon imparts mellower aromatic notes while the sweetness from the sugar enhances all of the above qualities. The almond imparts a subtle nuttiness to the drink which also works well with the sugar.
The Vegan Culinary Experience – Education, Inspiration, Quality * www.veganculinaryexperience.com
Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Chef’s Notes
This is one of my favorite teas and I particularly enjoy the touch of the whole almond at the bottom of the glass.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 139.2 (42.3) Calories from Fat 34.7 (8.7) Fat 3.9g (1.0g) Total Carbohydrates 30.9g (7.7g) Dietary Fiber 5.0g (1.3g) Sugars 18.6g (4.6g) Protein 2.8g (0.7g) Salt 5mg (1mg) Vitamin A 0% (0%) Vitamin B6 4% (1%) Vitamin C 6% (1.5%) Calcium 13% (3.3%) Iron 30% (7.5%) Thiamin 3% (0.8%) Riboflavin 3% (0.8%) Niacin 3% (0.8%) Folate 2% (0.5%) Phosphorous 6% (1.5%) Potassium 7% (1.8%) Zinc 4% (1%) Magnesium 9% (2.3%) Copper 9% (2.3%)

Interesting Facts
Almonds are actually the seeds of the fruit of almond trees.
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Wild almonds can be toxic, but the toxins have been selected out of the domesticated varieties.

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December 2009|53

Rose Petal Tea
Type: Drink Time to Prepare: 5 minutes Serves: 3

¼ cup of culinary rose petals or 3 rose tea bags 3 cups of water 1 tbsp. of sweet agave nectar

Ingredients

Instructions

Bring the water to a boil.

Add in the rose petals and reduce it to a simmer. Simmer the tea for 5 minutes or until the petal become discolored. Remove it from the heat and immediately stir in the sweet agave nectar.

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Kitchen Equipment
Pot Measuring Cup Stirring Spoon

Presentation
Not applicable.

Time Management
This tea should be served hot and the longer the petals are allowed to sit in the tea, the more powerful it gets.

Complementary Food and Drinks
This makes an excellent precursor to a light meal or a mezze platter.

Where to Shop
Culinary rose petals are not always easy to find, so you may need to go with rose tea bags. Avoid using regular rose petals as non-culinary roses are typically laden with pesticides. Approximate cost per serving is $.25.

How It Works
This is fairly simple. The hot water pulls the flavor from the rose petals and the sweetness of the agave complements the mellow fragrance of the flowers.

Chef’s Notes
This makes for a great afternoon tea and with a bit of extra agave, a nice dessert tea.

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December 2009|55

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 64.0 (16.0) Calories from Fat 0.0 (0.0) Fat 0.0g (0.0g) Total Carbohydrates 64.0g (16.4g) Dietary Fiber 0.0g (0.0g) Sugars 64.0g (16.0g) Protein 0.0g (0.0g) Salt 0.0g (0.0g) Vitamin A 0% (0%) Vitamin B6 0% (0%) Vitamin C 0% (0%) Calcium 0% (0%) Iron 0% (0%) Thiamin 0% (0%) Riboflavin 0% (0%) Niacin 0% (0%) Folate 0% (0%) Phosphorous 0% (0%) Potassium 0% (0%) Zinc 0% (0%) Magnesium 0% (0%) Copper 0% (0%)

Interesting Facts
Roses are native to Asia.

The fruit of the rose is called a rose hip.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|56

Aroz Mofalfal (Arabian Rice)
Type: Side Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 40 minutes

4 cups water 2 tsp. lemon juice 1 cup jasmine rice ¼ cup vermicelli, broken 2 tbsp. vegan margarine 1/8 tsp. salt

Ingredients

Instructions

Bring the water and lemon juice to a boil. Add the rice, boiling the rice for 7-8 minutes. Bring the margarine to a medium high heat. Once it is melted and at the appropriate heat, add the vermicelli, frying them until they are brown. Drain the rice of excess water. Add the rice to a baking dish. Cover the baking dish. Bake the rice on 325 degrees for 20 minutes. Mix the vermicelli, remaining margarine, and salt into the rice. While it is boiling, break the vermicelli into about 1” pieces.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|57

Low-fat Version
Omit the oil and cook the vermicelli in boiling water until it is just under al dente.

Raw Version
Use 2 cups of ground cauliflower for the rice and zucchini strings for the vermicelli. Only use ½ tsp. of lemon juice and mix everything together, allowing it to sit for about 20 minutes.

Kitchen Equipment
Pot Small Baking Dish Foil Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Stirring Spoon Colander Sauté Pan

Presentation
Not applicable.

Time Management
If you’re quick, you can get the vermicelli sautéed while the rice is boiling. If you are worried about being fast, just boil the rice first, drain it, set it aside, and do the vermicelli next.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Complementary Food and Drinks
Rice can be served with just about any dish, but I love serving it by itself with spicy tahini sauce on top.

Where to Shop
Vegan margarine can be found at places like Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and Sprouts while the rest of the ingredients are easy to get. Approximate cost per serving is $.50.

How It Works
Boiling the rice in a large amount of water keeps the grains separate, which is also why lemon juice is used. The acidity of the lemon cuts the base of the starch, keeping the grains from sticking together. Frying the vermicelli makes the pasta brown, creating a nice color contrast with the rice while baking it with the moist rice will slowly hydrate it. Covering the baking dish helps keep the rice moist.

Chef’s Notes
This is a great way to prepare rice, though I rarely fry the vermicelli so I can keep the fat content down.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 948.3 (237.1) Calories from Fat 162.3 (40.6) Fat 18.0g (4.5g) Total Carbohydrates 183.4g (45.9g) Dietary Fiber 1.4g (0.4g) Sugars 0.5g (0.1g) Protein 13.1g (3.3g) Salt 294mg (73mg) Vitamin A 20% (5%)
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Vitamin B6 14% (3.5%) Vitamin C 36% (9%) Calcium 5% (1.3%) Iron 13% (3.3%) Thiamin 9% (2.3%) Riboflavin 6% (1.5%) Niacin 16% (4%) Folate 3% (0.8%) Phosphorous 22% (5.5%) Potassium 5% (1.3%) Zinc 25% (6.3%) Magnesium 17% (4.3%) Copper 45% (11.3%)

Interesting Facts
Jasmine rice is indigenous to Thailand, though it is popular throughout the world for its fragrant characteristic.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|60

Dolmas
Type: Appetizer Time to Prepare: 90 minutes Serves: 8

2-3 oz. of grape leaves 1 tsp. of olive oil 1 onion, minced 1 tbsp. of pine nuts 5-6 sundried tomatoes, minced ¼ cup of rice ¼ tsp. of salt ¼ tsp. of freshly ground black pepper ¼ tsp. of crushed red pepper 2 tsp. of minced fresh dill ½ cup of rice 3/8 cup of water 1 cup of water 1 ½ cups of water 2 tbsp. of olive oil Juice of 2 lemons 2 tbsp. of minced fresh parsley

Ingredients

Instructions

Mince the onion and sundried tomatoes. Saute the onion in the oil on a medium heat until it is soft. Add in the rice and sauté this for about 2 minutes. Bring this to a simmer. Allow it to simmer until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid and is soft. Mince the dill and parsley. Stir these into the rice. Unfold the grape leaves. If the grape leaves are very briny, rinse them with water.
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Add in the pine nuts, sundried tomatoes, black pepper, crushed red pepper, and water.

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|61

Boil them in enough water to cover them by at least 3” for about 5 minutes. Allow them to cool. Place a tbsp. of filling along one side of a leaf. Fold over the sides. Roll the leaf into a tight cigar shape. If there are tears in the leaf, you can shore them with other grape leaves. Repeat this with the filling and the other leaves. Place a layer of leaves in the bottom of a pot or deep skillet. Place the stuffed grape leaves tightly in the pot or skillet. Add one cup of water to the pot or skillet and bring the heat to medium low. Cook the stuffed grape leaves for 20 minutes. Add in 1 ½ cups of hot water and simmer this for 15 more minutes. Drizzle the lemon juice and olive oil on the finished grape leaves. Remove them and allow them to come to room temperature. Place a plate on top of the stuffed grape leaves to keep them from unfurling.

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Kitchen Equipment
2 Pots Deep Skillet Plate Cutting Board Knife Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon

Presentation
I like to arrange these in rows on a platter with a hearty serving of olives. You can also garnish these with fresh parsley, diced tomatoes, and lemon slices.

Time Management
Dolmas are a lot of work, but they are easy to make in large batches and they get better as they

sit, so I suggest taking the time to make a very large batch and then storing most of them in containers, saving a few to snack on the day you make them.

Complementary Food and Drinks
My favorite way to serve these is as part of a mezze platter with olives, hummus, babaganoush, and tomato stewed green beans.

Where to Shop
All of the ingredients for the dolmas should be commonly available except for the grape leaves.

For those, you may have to try a Middle Eastern market or a gourmet market.

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How It Works
Often, the leaves are a bit tough when coming out of the can or jar, so they need to be boiled to make them pliable. This also washes away some of the salt on them. For the filling, the onion and sundried tomatoes are minced so you don’t get large pieces of them relative to the small size of the dolmas. The onion is sautéed to soften it and bring out the sweetness. The rice is then added to the pot and toasted for a couple minutes to create a deeper, rich flavor. Then the spices and sundried tomatoes are added with the water to cook down into the rice. The rice will not be completely soft at this point, but that’s good because the stuffed dolmas are going to boil in water and the rice will absorb the rest of the liquid it needs. The stuffed dolmas are boiled to soften them further and to get the flavors to meld. A layer of leaves is placed on the bottom of the skillet or pot so that those will stick to the bottom and not the delicate dolmas. These then rest so they can absorb the lemon juice and olive oil and come down to room temperature.

Chef’s Notes
Dolmas are a commitment, though well worth the effort. I like to spend a weekend afternoon doing

a large batch of them and then snack on them throughout the week.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 691.5 (86.4) Fat 39.3g (4.9g) Total Carbohydrates 72.6g (9.1g) Dietary Fiber 4.4g (0.5g) Sugars 7.0g (0.9g) Protein 11.9g (1.5g) Salt 3369mg (421mg) Vitamin A 105% (13.1%) Vitamin B6 22% (2.8%) Vitamin C 130% (16.3%) Calcium 32% (4%) Iron 35% (4.4%)

Calories from Fat 353.8 (44.2)

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Thiamin 25% (3.1%) Riboflavin 23% (2.9%) Niacin 40% (5%) Folate 57% (7.1%) Phosphorous 19% (2.4%) Potassium 18% (2.3%) Zinc 11% (1.4%) Magnesium 19% (2.4%) Copper 103% (12.9%)

Interesting Facts
Dolma means “stuffed veggie.” Thus, dolmas can be made from cabbage, eggplant, peppers, etc. These are often called sarma because the Turkish word dolmak means stuffed and the Turkish word sarmak means wrapped.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|65

Pita
Type: Bread Serves: 6 – 10 pitas Time to Prepare: 3 hours 30 minutes (includes 3 hours for the bread to rise)

2 tsp. of active dry yeast ¼ tsp. of sugar 1 cup of warm water 3 cups of whole wheat flour 1 tsp. of salt

Ingredients

Instructions

Dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. Sift together the flour and salt together in a separate bowl. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and thoroughly combine everything. Knead the dough for about 7 or 8 minutes. Cover the bowl with a dish towel and let it rise for about 3 hours. Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Divide the dough into six portions and roll them into balls. Bake the pitas on 500 degrees for about 4 minutes. Turn the pitas over and bake them for another 2 minutes. Roll each ball of dough into a 5” diameter circle about ¼” thick.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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December 2009|66

Kitchen Equipment
Measuring Bowl Measuring Spoon Whisk Mixing Bowl Baking Sheet Oven Rolling Pin

Presentation
Not applicable.

Time Management
Be quick when you turn the pitas over to minimize the amount of time the pitas are left outside the oven.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Pita goes with just about every Middle Eastern dish, but my favorite pairings are with falafel and hummus.

Where to Shop
All the ingredients are common. Approximate cost per serving is $.50.

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How It Works
The dough is kneaded until it is smooth and elastic so that the gluten molecules bind together, causes the bread to puff and separate.

trapping the gas from the yeast in the bread, which causes it to rise. The incredibly high heat

Chef’s Notes
Fresh pita is so much better than the packaged kind, but only when it is eaten relatively fresh.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1332.9 (133.3) Calories from Fat 33.3 (3.3) Fat 3.7g (0.4g) Total Carbohydrates 286.2g (28.6g) Dietary Fiber 10.1g (1.0g) Sugars 0.0g (0.0g) Protein 38.7g (3.9g) Salt 2325mg (233mg) Vitamin A 0% (0%) Vitamin B6 8% (0.8%) Vitamin C 0% (0%) Calcium 6% (0.6%) Iron 91% (9.1%) Thiamin 196% (19.6%) Riboflavin 109% (10.9%) Niacin 111% (11.1%) Folate 171% (17.1%) Phosphorous 40% (4%) Potassium 11% (1.1%) Zinc 18% (1.8%) Magnesium 21% (2.1%)
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December 2009|68

Copper 27% (2.7%)

Interesting Facts
As a flatbread recipe, pita is one of the oldest breads in the world. Pita means bread in Aramaic and spread with the Hellenistic expansion.

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Food from the Middle East

December 2009|69

Saudi Sambousak
Type: Condiment Time to Prepare: 1 hour Serves: 16

The Dough 3 cups of flour ½ tsp. of ground fennel seed ½ tsp. of poppy seed Water ½ tsp. of salt The Filling 2 onions, grated or minced 1 red potato, diced 1 carrot, diced 1 tbsp. of oil for sautéing 1 tsp. of freshly ground black pepper 1 tsp. of cumin ¼ tsp. of salt 1 cup of cooked lentils 1 ½ cups of olive oil

Ingredients

Instructions

In a deep bowl, mix together the flour, fennel, poppy seed, and salt. Stir in the oil. Add in just enough water to get the dough to bind, like a flakey pastry. Divide the dough into 1” balls. Cover the dough. Set it aside in the refrigerator. Start cooking the lentils. Grate the onion. Dice the potato and carrot. Sauté the onion, carrot, and potato until they are all soft. Add the pepper, cumin, and salt and continue sautéing the veggies 1 more minute.
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Once the lentils are done, combine them with the veggies. Set the filling aside. On a floured surface, roll each piece of dough out to 1/16” handling it as little as possible. Place a tbsp. of the sautéed mix in each rolled out piece of dough. Fold the dough around the filling and twist the edges closed. Deep fry the sambousaks on 375 degrees until they are golden brown.

Option: Bake the sambousaks on 350 degrees for 25 minutes.

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Kitchen Equipment
Large Mixing Bowl Measuring Cup Whisk Towel Small Pot with Lid Knife Cutting Board Sauté Pan Tongs or Fry Basket Deep Fryer Measuring Spoon

Presentation
Serve only one or two of these per person and place a dipping

sauce on the side of the plate. Alternatively, you can place several dipping sauces on each plate or in small bowls in the middle of the table.

Time Management
This works best if you roll out each of the balls of dough before filling them, then fill them all, then twist them all closed, finally deep frying them. Creating this type of assembly line will drastically reduce the time you spend making these. You can easily freeze any left overs.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of hot sauce, harissa, or muhumarra.

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Where to Shop
All these ingredients are fairly common with rock salt usually being found on most baking aisles. Approximate cost per serving is $.50.

How It Works
The dough is fairly dry so that it crisps while it is in the deep fryer with the oil added to the dough there to make the sambousaks slightly flaky. The fennel and poppy seeds make the dough interesting, a nice contrast to similar recipes which have no flavor at all in the dough. The filling is a very peppery common set of ingredients. There is sweetness from the carrot and onion, starch from the potato, and heartiness from the lentils. The temperature is important when deep frying these. Too high and they’ll burn. Too low and they will absorb too much oil.

Chef’s Notes
The flavored dough is what really makes these stand out. Feel free to experiment with lot of different spices.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 5120.3 (320.0) Calories from Fat 3084.0 (192.8) Fat 342.7g (21.4g) Total Carbohydrates 440.3g (27.5g) Dietary Fiber 41.9g (2.6g) Sugars 14.4g (0.9g) Protein 68.8g (4.3g) Salt 518mg (32mg) Vitamin A 105% (6.6%) Vitamin B6 114% (7.1%) Vitamin C 174% (10.9%) Calcium 25% (1.6%) Iron 156% (9.8%)
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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December 2009|73

Thiamin 251% (15.7%) Riboflavin 133% (8.3%) Niacin 149% (9.3%) Folate 261% (16.3%) Phosphorous 112% (7%) Potassium 106% (6.6%) Zinc 47% (2.9%) Magnesium 74% (4.6%) Copper 82% (5.1%)

Interesting Facts
These are very similar to samosas, a deep-fried Indian pastry, with both samosas and sambousaks originating in Persia at least as far back as the Middle Ages.

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December 2009|74

Yalanchi
Type: Side Serves: 6 Time to Prepare: 45 minutes

3 ½ cups water 2 cups rice 6 medium tomatoes 1 yellow onion, diced 1 tsp. olive oil ½ cup raisins, soaked in warm water, and drained ½ cup pine nuts ½ tsp. cinnamon Olive oil for brushing ¼ tsp. salt ½ tsp. freshly ground pepper

Ingredients

Instructions

Bring the water to a boil and add the rice. Bring the water back to a boil. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to low, cooking the rice for about 20 minutes. While it is cooking, prepare the tomatoes and the rest of the filling. Cut the tops off of the tomatoes about ½” down. Cut around the stems and chop what is left of the tomato tops. Scoop out the seeds and turn the tomatoes over to drain. Dice the onion. Sauté the onion on a medium heat in the 1 tsp of olive oil until the onion is soft, but not browned. Add in the pine nuts, raisins, cinnamon, and tomato tops to the pan and stir. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer the mix for 2 to 3 minutes. Mix this with the cooked rice, salt, and pepper. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush the tomatoes with olive oil. Bake for about 20 minutes.
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Stuff each tomato and place it on the baking sheet.

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December 2009|75

Low-fat Version
Omit the olive oil and pine nuts, using diced carrot for crunch instead of the nuts.

Raw Version
Use 3 cups of ground cauliflower for the rice and half the onion called for in the recipe. Allow all the stuffing ingredients to sit for about an hour before stuffing the tomatoes.

Kitchen Equipment
Knife Cutting Board Measuring Cup Stirring Spoon Pot with Lid Mixing Bowl Oven Brush Baking Dish Measuring Spoon

Presentation
Save a few pine nuts to garnish the finished tomatoes and add some minced parsley or mint to the top.

Time Management
Don’t start prepping the tomatoes and filling until the rice is cooking. By the time the rice is done, you should just be finishing up with the onion/pine nut mix.
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of stewed fava beans.

Where to Shop
All the ingredients are fairly common, though you will probably get the best price on pine nuts by weight at a place like CostCo. Approximate cost is $2.25 per serving.

How It Works
Hollowing the tomatoes makes enough room for the stuffing and tipping them over gets rid of excess liquid from the seedy part of the tomato, which would make the rice at the bottom of the tomato mushy if left inside. The pine nuts are used for crunch while the onion and raisins are used for sweetness. The tomatoes and filling are baked so that the tomatoes can soften and the filling and spices set.

Chef’s Notes
I find it hard to eat just one of these! I have to set these out of sight so I don’t over indulge.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 2074.0 (345.7) Calories from Fat 1164.0 (194.0) Fat 129.3g (21.6g) Total Carbohydrates 202.0g (33.7g) Dietary Fiber 12.3g (2.1g) Sugars 62.2g (10.4g) Protein 25.5g (4.3g) Salt 616mg (103mg) Vitamin A 60% (10%) Vitamin B6 40% (6.7%)
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Vitamin C 102% (17%) Calcium 16% (2.7%) Iron 41% (6.8%) Thiamin 44% (7.3%) Riboflavin 27% (4.5%) Niacin 38% (6.3%) Folate 194% (32.3%) Phosphorous 71% (11.8%) Potassium 62% (10.3%) Zinc 48% (8%) Magnesium 77% (12.8%) Copper 79% (13.2%)

Interesting Facts
Yalanchi can also be grape leaves stuffed with a rice and tomato filling.

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December 2009|78

Falafels
Type: Main Dish Makes: 8 large falafels Time to Prepare: 1 hour + 18 hours for soaking

½ an onion, minced 4 cloves of garlic, minced 2 tbsp. of minced parsley 2 tbsp. of minced cilantro ½ cup of dried chickpeas, soaked ½ cup of dried fava beans, soaked (or chickpeas if you can’t find fava beans) 1 tsp. of cumin 1 tsp. of salt 1 tsp. of crushed red pepper 1 tsp. of baking powder ¼ cup of flour 1 tbsp. of sesame seeds Vegetable oil for frying

Ingredients

Instructions

Soak the beans for at least 18 hours. Mince the onion, garlic, parsley, and cilantro. Mash the beans, onion, parsley, cilantro, salt, pepper, cumin, and garlic until they are coarsely combined. Mix together the baking powder and flour. Combine those with the bean mix. Cover the chickpea/fava bean dough. Refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes. Heat up enough oil at 350 degrees in a wok or fryer to cover the falafels. Lightly oil your hands to more easily work with the falafel dough without it sticking. Form the falafel balls and roll them in sesame seeds. Fry them in the oil until they outside is crispy and a dark golden brown (about 3-5 minutes).

Option: Use cooked beans instead of soaking dried ones.

To test the falafel dough, fry one falafel and if it falls apart, add a little more flour to the dough.
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|79

Low-fat Version
The falafels can be baked on a lightly oiled pan at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.

Raw Version
Use sprouted chickpeas and fava beans, omit the baking powder and flour, mash the dough into balls, and dehydrate them for about 6 hours.

Kitchen Equipment
Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Masher or Food Processor Mixing Bowl Fry Basket Knife Cutting Board Wok or Fryer

Presentation
I generally serve these adorned with sliced cucumber and tomato and drizzled with hot sauce.

Time Management
Once you make the dough, be sure to fry up the falafel within a couple hours or the dough will

become too dry.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Complementary Food and Drinks
My favorite way to serve these is in a pita with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and spicy tahini sauce.

Where to Shop
All the ingredients should be fairly easy to find save the fava beans. You may need to head to a Middle Eastern market for those. Approximate cost per serving is $.25.

How It Works
Mashing the beans keeps them coarse, which helps create a fluffy texture. The baking powder also releases gas once it hits liquid and this also promotes a nice fluffy texture. The fava beans mixed with the chickpeas gives these falafels a heartier texture than those made with just chickpeas. Notice also that the falafels are heavily spiced. This is because the mashed beans will cut the flavors of the spices greatly and everything will mellow out in the fryer.

Chef’s Notes
The hallmark of a good falafel is a crispy outside and a puffy inside with lots of rich flavors. I

generally don’t eat fried foods, but this is definitely an exception!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 463.40 (57.9) Calories from Fat 217.8 (27.2) Fat 24.2g (3.0g) Total Carbohydrates 43.3g (5.4g) Dietary Fiber 6.2g (0.8g) Sugars 2.4g (0.3g) Protein 18.1g (2.3g) Salt 2326mg (291mg) Vitamin A 0% (0%) Vitamin B6 8% (1%)
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Vitamin C 4% (0.5%) Calcium 7% (0.9%) Iron 26% (3.3%) Thiamin13% (1.6%) Riboflavin 13% (1.6%) Niacin 7% (0.9%) Folate 24% (3%) Phosphorous 26% (3.3%) Potassium 23% (2.9%) Zinc 14% (1.8%) Magnesium 28% (3.5%) Copper 18% (2.3%)

Interesting Facts
Falafels originated in Egypt where they were made with just fava beans instead of chickpeas.

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Fava Bean and Tomato Stew
Type: Main Dish Time to Prepare: 40 minutes Serves: 4

4 cups of fava beans 1 onion, diced 6 cloves of garlic, minced 4 hot red dried peppers ½ tsp. of salt Juice of 1 lemon 4 tomatoes, chopped 1 tsp. of cumin seeds ¼ cup of chopped parsley ¼ tsp. of freshly ground pepper 1 cup of bulgur 1 cup of peas 4 cups of veggie broth 1 tsp. of olive oil

Ingredients

Instructions

Mince the garlic, dice the onion, and chop the tomatoes. On a medium heat, sauté the cumin seeds, hot peppers, and garlic for 30 seconds. Add in all the other ingredients except for the lemon juice and parsley. Simmer this for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice and parsley.

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Kitchen Equipment
Medium sized Pot Wooden Stirring Spoon Measuring Cup Knife Cutting Board Measuring Spoon

Presentation
If you have some extra lemon left over, serve this with a slice of lemon on the lip of the bowl and dress the lemon and lip of the bowl with paprika.

Time Management
I use canned fava beans to save myself a whole lot of time.

Complementary Food and Drinks
A plate of spicy cous cous makes a nice complement for this stew as it can be poured over the cous cous.

Where to Shop
I purchased my fava beans at a gourmet grocery store, though you can also purchase them at Middle Eastern markets and even many Asian markets. Whole Foods should also carry them. Bulgur is also known as cracked wheat and there is a good chance it will be available at your local market. If you can’t find it, feel free to substitute cous cous.

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How It Works
Sauteeing the cumin seeds, garlic, and hot peppers gives them a more robust flavor and helps give

the stew a nice aroma. The fava beans provide the heartiness while the bulgur bulks out the stew the end so it stays fresh, along with the parsley.

with a complex carbohydrate. The peas add color to the stew. Finally, the lemon juice is added at

Chef’s Notes
This was inspired by a Middle Eastern dish called fool madamas, made with fava beans, tomato, garlic, onion, and lemon.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1709.0 (427.3) Calories from Fat 63.7 (15.9) Fat 7.1g (1.8g) Total Carbohydrates 324.6g (81.2g) Dietary Fiber 77.3g (19.3g) Sugars 38.5g (9.6g) Protein 86.7g (21.7g) Salt 3719mg (929.8mg) Vitamin A 95% (23.8%) Vitamin B6 92% (23%) Calcium 38% (9.5%) Iron 102% (25.5%) Thiamin 87% (21.8%) Riboflavin 60% (15%) Niacin 89% (22.3%) Folate 229% (57.3%) Phosphorous 156% (39%) Vitamin C 257% (64.3%)

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Potassium 114% (28.5%) Zinc 77% (19.3%) Magnesium 158% (39.5%) Copper 144% (36%)

Interesting Facts
Bulgur is another name for cracked wheat and is one of the main ingredients of tabouleh. Fava beans are also known as broad beans.

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Ful Medammes (ancient Egyptian version with contemporary variant)

Type: Main Dish, Side Time to Prepare: 10 minutes

Serves: 4

3 cups of cooked fava beans 1 clove of garlic, minced Juice of 2 lemons 1 tbsp. of olive oil ½ tsp. of salt 1 tbsp. of chopped parsley leaves

Ingredients

Option: 3 roma tomatoes, diced Option: 1 ½ cups of dried fava beans instead of cooked and 1 ½ cups of water Instructions

Rinse the cooked fava beans. Mince the garlic. Chop the parsley. Juice the lemons. Mash the beans with all of the ingredients except the parsley, leaving some of the beans chunky. Stir in the parsley.

proceed with the recipe.

Option: Stew the fava beans with the diced tomatoes until the tomatoes turn into sauce, then Option: If you prefer to used dried fava beans, soak them over night, then drain the water. Add
the fava beans, 1 ½ cups of water, the optional tomatoes, and garlic to the pot and simmer the removed from the heat. beans until they are soft, then add the parsley, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt once the beans are

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Low-fat Version
Omit the olive oil and add in a like amount of water.

Raw Version
Sprout the fava beans, then prepare the recipe the same way.

Kitchen Equipment
Mixing Bowl Masher Cutting Board Knife Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon

Presentation
Don’t completely mash the beans into a paste and cut some extra parsley to garnish the finished dish.

Time Management
I use canned fava beans to save a lot of time. Otherwise, I end up spending another hour or so

cooking the beans.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Although this can be eaten on its own, it is meant to be served with some sort of flatbread, pita being the most popular.
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Where to Shop
Fava beans can be found at Middle Eastern markets and most gourmet markets. The rest of the

ingredients should be easy to come by. Approximate price per serving is $2.00.

How It Works
The lemon juice serves two purposes. First, it lightens the dish. Second, it provides enough liquid

to mash the beans effectively, which is also assisted by the olive oil. The garlic adds bite to the beans and the parsley gives a fresh, lightened quality to the dish.

Chef’s Notes
Many modern ful medammes recipes are made with tomatoes, but tomatoes were not available in the ancient world. In some ways, I like the simplicity and purity of taste in this recipe more than the modern one.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 831.8 (208.0) Calories from Fat 459.0 (114.8) Fat 51.0g (12.8g) Total Carbohydrates70.6g (17.7g) Dietary Fiber 18.2g (4.5g) Sugars 22.7g (5.7g) Protein 22.6g (5.7g) Salt 1843mg (461mg) Vitamin A 21% (5.3%) Vitamin B6 23% (5.8%) Vitamin C 83% (20.8%) Calcium 15% (3.8%) Iron 26% (6.5%) Thiamin 26% (6.5%)
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Riboflavin 19% (4.8%) Niacin 14% (3.5%) Folate 88% (22%) Phosphorous 39% (9.8%) Potassium 49% (12.3%) Zinc 21% (5.3%) Magnesium 36% (9%) Copper 41% (10.3%)

Interesting Facts
Medammes means “mashed.”

Ful medammes has been found mentioned on Egyptian hieroglyphs.

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Mediterranean Flatbread Pizza
Type: Main Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 60 minutes

8 oz. of garbanzo beans (chickpeas), rinsed ¼ cup of water ¼ cup of tahini ¼ tsp. of salt 1/8 tsp. of cayenne pepper 1 tsp. of lemon juice 20 pitted Kalamata olives 1tbsp. of fresh tarragon leaves 1 flatbread crust ¼ cup of olive oil

Ingredients

Instructions

*Note that not all blenders work the same, so you may have to adjust the water content to get this Spread the blend over the flatbread crust, leaving about ½” of the crust exposed. Sprinkle the cayenne pepper over the spread. Place the olives evenly on top of the spread. Remove the pizza from the oven. Sprinkle the fresh tarragon leaves over the pizza (do not use dried tarragon). Bake the pizza on 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until the crust is golden.

Blend together the garbanzo beans, water, tahini, olive oil, salt, and lemon juice until it is smooth.

smooth.

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Measuring Cup

Kitchen Equipment

Measuring Spoon Pizza Stone Oven

Blender or Food Processor

Spatula for spreading the “sauce” on the flatbread

Presentation
This looks very nice on a long, dark, wooden plank (sometimes called a pizza piel). Also, do not bake the tarragon on the pizza as it will lose both its flavor and its beautiful, bright green color. Make sure to put it on after the baking is done.

Time Management
This pizza has about 5 to 10 minutes of labor and the rest of it is the baking. It is best eaten fresh, but will keep for a day if you cover it well.

Complimentary Food and Drinks
The flavors of this pizza go well with most Middle Eastern drinks. Try a cinnamon tea or Arabic

coffee.

Where to Shop
For the best flavor, get a high quality tahini. The most common brand of good quality tahini is

MaraNatha, which can be found at places like Whole Foods and Wild Oats. If you want to go for a cheap tahini because of budgetary concerns, find a Middle Eastern market.
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How It Works
The bean spread is smooth enough and thick enough that it acts as a hearty, flavorful base for the

pizza, which allows the olives and tarragon to accent the pizza instead of overwhelm it. Adding in drying out during baking.

the olive oil and water is what creates the smoothness to the spread and the olive oil keeps it from

Chef’s Notes
The base of this is a modified hummus. It omits the garlic and paprika and goes light on the lemon juice so that the spread does not take over the pizza.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1709.8 (427.5) Calories from Fat 1045.3 (261.3) Fat 116.1g (29.0g) Total Carbohydrates 131.9g (33.0g) Dietary Fiber 22.66g (5.7g) Sugars 1.1g (0.3g) Protein 34.3g (8.6g) Salt 1870.7mg (467.7mg) Vitamin A 7% (1.8%) Vitamin B6 15% (3.8%) Vitamin C 4% (1%) Iron 86% (21.5%) Thiamin 82% (20.5%) Niacin 47 11.8%) Folate 86% (21.5%) Phosphorous 76% (19%) Riboflavin 43% (10.8%) Calcium 40% (10%)

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Potassium 23% (5.8%) Zinc 38% (9.5%) Magnesium 36% (9%) Copper 74% (18.5%)

Interesting Facts
Kalamata is a city in southern Greece.

Some olive groves are rumored to be over 3,000 years old. Olive trees often displace other vegetation in the wild.

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December 2009|94

Imam Bayildi
Type: Appetizer or Main Dish Time to Prepare: 2 hours Serves: 4

2 small eggplants, about 1 ½ lbs. 1 onion, thinly sliced 3 cloves of garlic 2 tbsp. of olive oil 2 roma tomatoes 2 tbsp. of fresh chopped parsley 1 tbsp. of fresh dill ½ tsp. of sugar 1/8 tsp. of salt Juice of 1 lemon Water

Ingredients

Instructions

Remove the stems from the eggplant.

Cut each eggplant in half lengthwise. Cut a small slice on the skin sides so that when the eggplant is placed in a skillet skin side down, it does not fall over. Salt the fleshy side of the eggplant and place it fleshy side down on a plate or in a shallow mixing bowl. Allow the eggplant to sit for 30 minutes. Rinse the eggplant and pat them dry. Slice the onion and mince the garlic. Add the oil to a sauté pan and bring it to a medium high heat. Saute the eggplant flesh side down until it is golden brown (5-7 minutes.) Transfer the eggplant to a platter or large plate. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion and garlic to the sauté pan in which you cooked the eggplant.

Saute these until the onion is soft, constantly stirring them to keep the garlic from burning. Transfer these to a mixing bowl.
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Dice the tomatoes. Add the diced tomatoes, parsley, dill, sugar, and salt to the mixing bowl with the onions and garlic. For each eggplant half, cut a slit into the flesh, being careful not to break the skin and leavethe ends of the eggplant intact. Fill each eggplant with as much of the onion/tomato mix as much as you can. Dress the eggplant halves with the lemon juice. Return the eggplant halves to the sauté pan, skin side down. Fill the sauté pan with enough water to reach about ½” up the eggplant. Bring the pan to a low heat. Cover the eggplant. Cook this for 50 minutes, adding water as needed to keep the pan from drying. Remove the eggplant and allow it to cool to room temperature before serving.

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Kitchen Equipment
Large Sauté Pan with at least a 1 inch lip Lid for the pan Spatula Knife Cutting Board Mixing Bowl Measuring Spoon

Presentation
Serve this on a white plate. This is a nice-looking recipe with lots of color and the white plate will draw the eyes to the eggplant. If you have some tomato sauce that remaining in the pan, drizzle it around the eggplant.

Time Management
There is a lot of down time in this recipe, which you can use to good effect. One way to save minutes. Also, while the eggplant is simmering, take the opportunity to clean up or even start another recipe.

about fifteen minutes is to cook the onions and garlic while the eggplant is sitting for the first thirty

Complementary Food and Drinks
This goes very well as part of a mezze platter and can also be served with a spread of toastedcumin seed rice.

Where to Shop
All of these ingredients should be available at your local market, except perhaps for the dill. For that, you may need to head to a gourmet market, Sprouts, Whole Foods, or your local farmers’
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market. When shopping for eggplant, look for firm skins without blemishes. Also, the wider the eggplant, the better because you can stuff it with more goodies! Price per serving is about $1.75.

How It Works
Salting the eggplant draws out any bitterness and softens it for a quicker sauté time. Sauteeing the fleshy side of the eggplant caramelizes it a bit and softens it for easy cutting and stuffing. The tomato base of the stuffing will soften into a chunky sauce as the eggplant simmers, allowing the flavors of the onion, garlic, tomato, and dill to penetrate into the walls of the eggplant. This, however, takes quite a bit of time which is why the eggplant is simmered after it is stuffed.

Chef’s Notes
This is a complex recipe, but well worth it if you have the time.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 603.7 (201.2) Fat 29.5g (9.8g) Total Carbohydrates 75.4g (25.1g) Dietary Fiber 23.9g (8.0g) Sugars 30.5g (10.2g) Protein 9.3g (3.1g) Salt 15mg (5mg) Vitamin A 25% (8.3%) Vitamin B6 47% (15.7%) Vitamin C 105% (35%) Calcium 8% (2.7%( Iron 20% (6.7%) Thiamin 38% (12.7%) Riboflavin 12% (4%) Niacin 29% (9.7%)

Calories from Fat 265.1 (88.4)

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Folate 41% (13.7%) Phosphorous 25% (8.3%) Potassium 73% (24.3%) Zinc 10% (3.3%) Magnesium 34% (11.3%) Copper 53% (17.7%)

Interesting Facts
Imam bayildi means the imam fainted. There are several stories pertaining to the name of this dish, all ending with an imam fainting. This dish is medieval in origin.

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Kosharee
Type: Main Dish Time to Prepare: 30 minutes Serves: 4

The Lentils 2 cups water The Pasta Water The Rice 1 cup macaroni 1 cup brown lentils

Ingredients

½ cup brown rice 1 cup water The Sauce ¼ tsp. salt 1 yellow onion, chopped 2 red chilies, diced 3 cloves of garlic, minced 1 tbsp. olive oil 2 tbsp. white wine vinegar 1 ½ cups tomato sauce 1 tsp. salt

Option: 1 cup of rinsed, cooked chickpeas Instructions

Boil the 2 cups of water and add the lentils.

Cover the pot and reduce the heat to low, cooking for about 20 minutes. Boil the pasta until it is al dente, then drain it and set it aside. Bring the water for the rice to a boil, add the rice and salt, cover the pot, reduce the heat to low, and cook the rice for 20 minutes. Chop the onion. Dice the chilies. Mince the garlic.
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On a medium heat, sauté the onion until it browns and then add the chilies. Sauté these for another two minutes. Add the tomato sauce, vinegar, and salt and simmer this for five minutes. When the pasta, rice, and lentils are done, mix them together and pour the sauce over this mix.

Option: Mix the chickpeas with the lentils.

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Low-fat Version
Omit the oil from the recipe, sautéing the onion over a medium high heat until it browns, then reducing the heat to medium before the tomato sauce is added.

Kitchen Equipment
3 Pots and 2 Lids Sauté Pan Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Knife Cutting Board Colander Large Mixing Bowl

Presentation
This should be served family style in a big bowl with a wide serving spoon. For some extra color, sprinkle cut parsley or cilantro on top of the sauce.

Time Management
Although there are four parts of this dish, three of them simply require boiling ingredients for an extended period of time. That means you can get the pasta, the rice, and the lentils boiling and then work on the sauce. Everything should come together at just about the same time.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of spiced walnuts.
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Where to Shop
All of these ingredients are fairly common. Approximate cost per serving is $1.00.

How It Works
Pasta and rice are used to provide different textures to the starch in the dish while lentils are used to make the dish very hearty. They also provide yet another texture to the dish, making three rather plain ingredients, interesting. The onions are browned to maximize their sweetness, making the sauce a mix of sweet, tangy, and spicy. This gives the three disparate ingredients, the pasta, rice, and lentils, a common flavor framework.

Chef’s Notes
Kosharee is one of my favorite bulk dishes. It can be made in large amounts and then refrigerated and eaten throughout the week.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1489.2(372.3) Calories from Fat 233.6 (58.4) Fat 26.0g (6.5g) Total Carbohydrates 242.8g (60.7g) Dietary Fiber 50.0g (12.5g) Sugars 32.5g (8.1g) Protein 71.1g (17.8g) Salt 3354mg (839mg) Vitamin A 41% (10.3%) Vitamin B6 97% (24.3%) Vitamin C 52% (13%) Calcium 26% (6.5%) Iron 137% (34.3%) Thiamin 133% (33.3%) Riboflavin 43% (10.8%)
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Niacin 139% (34.8%) Folate 323% (80.8%) Phosphorous 135% (33.8%) Potassium 110% (27.5%) Zinc 70% (17.5%) Magnesium 85% (21.3%) Copper 120% (30%)

Interesting Facts
Kosharee is a popular Egyptian dish, though variations of this dish are found throughout the Middle East and India.

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Roasted Mushroom Biryani
Type: Side or Main Dish Time to Prepare: 50 minutes Serves: 4

¾ cup of basmati rice 4 cups of water Juice of 1 lemon ½ tsp. of turmeric ½ tsp. of ground cumin ¼ tsp. of ground coriander ¼ tsp. of cinnamon ½ tsp. of brown mustard seed 1 tsp. of salt 1 tbsp. of minced mint 1 tbsp. of minced parsley 1 tbsp. of vegan margarine or olive oil 2 tbsp. of slivered almonds 1 tbsp. of black sesame seeds 2 cups of cremini mushrooms ½ tsp. of crushed red pepper 1 tbsp. of sesame oil ¼ tsp. of ground cardamom

Ingredients

Instructions

Toss the mushrooms in the sesame oil and crushed red pepper. Roast them on 400 degrees for 25 minutes in the dish in which you plan on baking the finished biryani. While the mushrooms are roasting, boil the water and lemon juice in a large pot. Add in the rice and stir. Boil this for 7 to 8 minutes. Drain the water from the rice and add the rice to a baking dish. Mince the parsley and mint. Combine the spices together in a small bowl or dish.
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When the mushrooms are done roasting, lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Add all of the spices, the rice, and the almonds to the baking dish with the mushrooms. Stir everything until it is thoroughly combined. Cover the baking dish with foil. Bake it for 20 minutes.

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Kitchen Equipment
Cutting Board Small Knife Measuring Spoon Measuring Cup Baking Dish Large Pot

Presentation
This looks nice in a long white porcelain dish, but if you have a mini round chafing dish, you can serve it in that and keep it warm at the table. These are the round metal serving dishes often seen in Indian restaurants.

Time Management
Boil the rice while the mushrooms are roasting and then use the extra time left before the mushrooms are done to mince the herbs and put the spice mix together. If you are worried about the time, mince the herbs and prepare the spice mix while preheating the oven for the mushrooms.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Potatoes and spinach with a savory masala (a.k.a. curry) make a great accompaniment to this recipe.

Where to Shop
This recipe contains a lot of spices (perhaps that’s an understatement for this one, too.) Go to a store that carries spices in bulk so you can get small amounts of them. Sprouts is perfect for that as well as Wild Oats. If you don’t have one of those stores in your area, look for a market that
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does carry spices in bulk. Cremini mushrooms are the small brown mushrooms that look like white

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December 2009|107

mushrooms.

How It Works
Boiling the rice in a large amount of water keeps the grains separate. The acid from the lemon juice also keeps the rice separate as the stickiness in rice is a base and acids counter bases. It is then baked to finish softening the rice and this is the point where the spices are added so they can slowly release their flavors into the rice. The spices should be mixed together before being added as the direct heat on the mushrooms will quickly darken and intensify their flavor. If they were baked solely in the rice, they would be cooked as much by contact with the hot rice as the oven and that wouldn’t allow them to darken as much. to the rice to ensure even distribution. The mushrooms are roasted before being added to the rice

Chef’s Notes
If you are a fan of biryani, make a large batch of the spice mix without the herbs so it is ready made to use later on.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 935.9 (234.0) Fat 39.8g (10.0g) Calories from Fat 358.4 (89.6)

Total Carbohydrates 125.8g (31.5g) Dietary Fiber 6.8g (1.7g) Sugars 3.4g (0.9g) Protein 18.6g (4.6g) Salt 2342mg (585.6mg) Vitamin A 0% (0%)

Vitamin B6 21% (5.3%) Vitamin C 41% (10.3%) Calcium 9% (2.3%) Iron 48% (12%) Thiamin 55% (13.8%)
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Riboflavin 40% (10%) Niacin 63% (15.8%) Folate 89% (22.3%) Phosphorous 44% (11%) Potassium 26% (6.5%) Zinc 26% (6.5%) Magnesium 31% (7.8%) Copper 64% (16%)

Interesting Facts
Biryani means “roasted” and is Persian in origin. Yogurt is often added to biryani. Vegetarian biryani are sometimes called tehari.

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December 2009|109

Orange and Olive Couscous Salad
Type: Salad Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 15 minutes

1 ½ cups of water 1 ½ cups of Israeli couscous 8 oranges 20-30 Kalamata olives, pitted Juice of 1 lemon 1/8 tsp. of cumin 1/8 tsp. of salt 1 tbsp. of chopped mint leaves ¼ tsp. of crushed red pepper

Ingredients

Instructions

Warm the water. Place the cous cous in a mixing bowl. Pour the warm water over the cous cous. Peel the oranges. Separate them into their natural sections. Once the cous cous has absorbed all of the water (about 10 minutes,) toss the orange sections and all of the ingredients together with the cous cous.

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Kitchen Equipment
Mixing Bowl Measuring Cup Small Pan Stirring Spoon Measuring Spoon

Presentation
To garnish the salad, take an orange section and dress it with some crushed red pepper (if you have extra orange slices.)

Time Management
This salad gets even better as it sits, but don’t let it sit for more than an hour. After that, the cous cous gets a bit soggy.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a chilled mint tea to accent the mint in the salad.

Where to Shop
I’ve found Israelis cous cous, which is the large cous cous, is at Central Market and Whole Foods.

It is a bit more expensive than regular cous cous. If you don’t have access to Israeli cous cous, it is ok to use a like amount of regular cous cous, prepared the same way. For the olives, head to a

store with an olive bar. You’ll get a better price on them. Make sure you purchase pitted olives or else you’ll spend a lot of time pitting them. Price per serving is about $4.00.

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How It Works
Allowing the cous cous to soak up the warm water keeps it from becoming mushy and sticking

together. The kalamata olives add a rich, salty taste to the salad which is balanced by the fresh, sweetness of the orange. The mint adds a strong refreshing quality and the crushed red pepper makes all the flavors pop.

Chef’s Notes
This has now become one of my favorite ways to prepare cous cous! When working with Israeli cous cous, I used to make an olive, vinegar, bell pepper mix, but I like this one much better.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1324.9 (331.2) Calories from Fat 120.1 (30.0) Fat 13.3g (3.3g) Total Carbohydrates 268.1g (67.0g) Dietary Fiber 37.4g (9.4g) Sugars 99.1g (24.8g) Protein 33.1g (8.3g) Salt 1321mg (330mg) Vitamin A 52% (13%) Vitamin B6 43% (10.8%) Calcium 56% (14%) Iron 37% (9.3%) Thiamin 61% (15.3%) Riboflavin 28% (7%) Niacin 45% (11.3%) Folate 90% (22.5%) Phosphorous 44% (11%) Vitamin C 967% (241.8%)

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Potassium 64% (16%) Zinc 17% (4.3%) Magnesium 47% (11.8%) Copper 60% (15%)

Interesting Facts
Regular cous cous is tiny pasta made from semolina flour.

Israeli cous cous is made from a mix of bulgur and semolina flour.

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Scabeg
Type: Main Dish Time to Prepare: 20 minutes Serves: 2

½ yellow onion, diced 5 cloves of garlic, sliced 6 tomatoes, chopped 15 whole okra 2 tsp. olive oil 2 tsp. white wine vinegar 1 tbsp. turmeric ½ tsp. salt 1 tsp. coriander seeds

Ingredients

Instructions

Dice the onion. Slice the garlic. Chop the tomatoes. Sauté the onion in 1 tsp. of olive oil until it is soft. Add all of the ingredients and simmer everything until the okra is soft and the tomatoes have turned into a sauce. Remove from the heat. Add in the last tsp. of olive oil.

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Low-fat Version
Omit the olive oil and simmer the onion with the tomatoes, okra, etc.

Raw Version
Use lemon juice instead of vinegar and puree the tomatoes, spices, and salt into a sauce.

Kitchen Equipment
Sauté Pan Knife Cutting Board Measuring Spoon Stirring Spoon

Presentation
Serve this on a lightly colored plate with a garnish of cut fresh parsley or minced parsley sprinkled all over the scabeg.

Time Management
This dish requires little labor and because of the vinegar, will keep for quite awhile in the refrigerator, so it’s perfect for making in large batches.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of rice and another side of red beans with lots of garlic.

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Where to Shop
I usually have to purchase whole, fresh okra at my local Asian market, though it occasionally shows

up in more conventional grocery stores. For the tomatoes, I generally choose whichever type is in season. Approximate cost per serving is $3.00.

How It Works
The okra is left whole in this dish so it doesn’t get its notorious slimy texture, which happens when the inside of the okra is exposed to hot liquid. The tomatoes are chopped so that they reduce into a sauce quickly. Since the okra and tomatoes go in at the same time, this is particularly important so that the okra does not become over done. The vinegar makes the tomato sauce tangy and brightens the flavor of the dish.

Chef’s Notes
I’ve noticed this is one of those dishes that people love or hate and a lot of it has to do with the dish has cooked.

vinegar and okra. If you don’t like the vinegar taste, try lemon juice instead, added fresh after the

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 251.1 (125.5) Calories from Fat 93.9 (46.9) Fat 10.4g (5.2g) Total Carbohydrates 31.5g (15.8g) Dietary Fiber10.6g (5.3g) Sugars 16.3g (8.2g) Protein 7.8g (3.9g) Salt 1184mg (592mg) Vitamin A 75% (37.5%) Vitamin B6 27% (13.5%) Vitamin C 131% (65.5%)
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Calcium 24% (12%) Iron 12% (6%) Thiamin 28% (14%) Riboflavin 17% (8.5%) Niacin 21% (10.5%) Folate 58% (29%) Phosphorous 15% (7.5%) Potassium 37% (18.5%) Zinc 14% (7%) Magnesium 34% (17%) Copper 21% (10.5%)

Interesting Facts
Scabeg sauce is made from tomatoes and vinegar and the dish can be made from any veggie, as long as that veggie is cooked in the scabeg sauce. The recipe for scabeg is several centuries old.

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Food from the Middle East

December 2009|117

Shawarma
Type: Side or Main Dish Serves: 2 Time to Prepare: 1 day to marinate the veggies + 30 minutes of prep time

The Marinade… ½ tsp. of ground cardamom ½ tsp. of cinnamon ½ tsp. of grated nutmeg ½ tsp. of freshly ground black pepper ½ tsp. of cayenne pepper ½ tsp. of salt 1 bay leaf ½ cup of lemon juice The Veggies… 1 onion, thinly sliced 1 green bell pepper, diced 1 cucumber, diced 1 tomato, diced 2 cups of cubed eggplant 1 tsp. of olive oil The Sauce… 3 tbsp. of tahini 1/8 tsp. of salt 3 tbsp. of water Juice of 1 half of a lemon 1/8 tsp. of cayenne pepper 1 small pickle, diced ½ cup of white wine vinegar 3 cloves of garlic, minced

Ingredients

Instructions

Combine all of the ingredients for the marinade in a glass bowl and set it aside. Slice the onion.
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Dice the bell pepper, cucumber, and tomato. Chop the eggplant. Place the veggies in the marinade, toss them, and cover them. Allow them to sit overnight. Remove the veggies from the marinade. Dice the pickle and add that to the veggies, setting them aside. Combine all of the ingredients for the sauce and set it aside. Over a medium heat, sauté the veggies in the olive oil until they are all completely soft. Add in the sauce and cook it until it is warm (about 1-2 minutes.) Serve immediately.

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Kitchen Equipment
Glass Bowl to marinade the veggies Plastic Wrap or Towel Saute Pan Cutting Board Knife Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Spatula Mixing Bowl for the sauce

Presentation
This makes an excellent pita sandwich, so what I like to do is place lettuce in the pita and then place the veggie shwarma in the fold of the pita and lettuce. Garnish it with chopped fresh parsley.

Time Management
The marinade takes a long time, but the active cooking time is rather brief. Don’t cook it until you are ready to eat. Otherwise, the sauce will get gummy and the veggies will lose their shine.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of rice cooked with a few sautéed bits of vermicelli pasta. On the sandwich, you can add hummus and/or amba, a pickled mango sauce.

Where to Shop
All of the ingredients should be easy to find save for the tahini, which can be found at Sprouts, Whole Foods, Central Market, most health food stores, Middle Eastern markets, and many
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better conventional markets. However, I like to go to Sprouts to purchase the spices because I can purchase them from the bulk spice section and get exactly the amount I need and pay much less than if I bought them jarred. Price per serving is about $3.00 with the pita and lettuce.

How It Works
The glass bowl is important because the marinade is rather acidic. If you use a metal bowl, the acid the veggies and help them absorb all of the other spices. A quick sauté softens and heats the will draw a metallic taste into the marinade. That acidity will pickle the veggies and will also cut into

veggies over which is poured a thin, spicy tahini sauce. Be sure not to overcook the spicy tahini sauce because the water will evaporate and the sauce will become too thick. If that happens, turn the heat down to low and stir some water back into the pan until you get the right consistency.

Chef’s Notes
Although shwarma is typically a meat dish, I first encountered it as a vegetarian dish at an amazing Egyptian restaurant in Texas called King Tut’s.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 564.1 (282.0) Fat 29.0g (14.5g) Calories from Fat 261.4 (130.7)

Total Carbohydrates 61.0g (30.5g) Dietary Fiber 14.9g (7.5g) Sugars 18.0g (9.0g) Protein 14.7g (7.3g) Salt 1453mg (727mg) Vitamin A 40% (20%)

Vitamin B6 32% (16%) Vitamin C 318% (159%) Calcium 16% (8%) Iron 26% (13%) Thiamin 56% (28%)
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Riboflavin 13% (6.5%) Niacin 28% (14%) Folate 45% (22.5%) Phosphorous 55% (27.5%) Potassium 52% (26%) Zinc 22% (11%) Magnesium 35% (17.5%) Copper 65% (32.5%)

Interesting Facts
Shwarma is a popular Middle Eastern fast food.

Shwarma is closely related to the Turkish doner kebab and is called the same thing in many places.

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December 2009|122

Shish Kebabs with Coriander Sauce
Type: Main Dish Time to Prepare: 30 minutes Serves: 4

The Kebabs 1 red pepper, chopped 1 zucchini, chopped 1 small potato, chopped ¼ yellow or red onion, sliced large 1 tsp. olive oil ¼ tsp. salt The Sauce 2 bunches of cilantro 1 small hot green pepper Juice of 1 lemon 1/8 tsp. of salt 1/8 tsp. of pepper ¼ tsp. of ground cumin 1 clove of garlic 3 tbsp. of water

Ingredients

Option: 1 cup of cubed tempeh or seitan Instructions

Light your grill and allow the flames to die down and the coals to get hot. Chop the pepper, zucchini, and potato. Slice the onion into large chunks. Toss the veggies in the oil and salt. Skewer the veggies and optional tempeh or seitan. Grill them until they are slightly soft all around and slightly charred. Chop the cilantro. Puree all the ingredients for the sauce until smooth.

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December 2009|123

Low-fat Version
Spritz the veggies with water every minute or two while they are on the grill instead of coating them in oil.

Raw Version
Instead of potato, used cauliflower and allow the veggies to sit for about an hour.

Kitchen Equipment
Grill Skewer Mixing Bowl Knife Cutting Board

Presentation
Leave the kebabs on the skewers and either serve the sauce on the side or drizzle it over the kebabs.

Time Management
Once the kebabs go on the grill, you need to pay attention to them to ensure they don’t burn. Rotate the veggies as soon as you see char marks on them.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with pita, lettuce, cherry tomato halves, and garlic sauce.
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Where to Shop
All the ingredients are fairly common. Approximate cost per serving is $.75.

How It Works
The oil keeps the veggies hydrated on the grill and also helps the spices stick to the veggies. The veggies are cut large so that they can be skewered and still remain intact on the grill.

Chef’s Notes
Kebabs are simple to do and make for a great excuse to use leftover veggies when you’re grilling other recipes.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 583.2 (291.6) Calories from Fat 129.2 (64.6) Fat 14.4g (7.2g) Total Carbohydrates 101.1g (50.6g) Dietary Fiber 15.8g (7.9g) Sugars 10.3g (5.2g) Protein 12.4g (6.2g) Salt 611mg (306mg) Vitamin A 115% (57.5%) Vitamin B6 92% (46%) Vitamin C 395% (197.5%) Calcium 10% (5%) Iron 27% (13.5%) Thiamin 31% (15.5%) Riboflavin 19% (9.5%) Niacin 44% (22%) Folate 35% (17.5%) Phosphorous 38% (19%)
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Potassium 78% (39%) Zinc 13% (6.5%) Magnesium 42% (21%) Copper 35% (17.5%)

Interesting Facts
Shish kebabs refer to the skewered and grilled style of kebab, while kebab usually just refers to some sort of grilled or broiled meat.

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December 2009|126

Tabouleh with Toasted Pine Nuts
Type: Side Serves: 2 Time to Prepare: 15 minutes

¼ cup bulgur (cracked wheat) 3 cups warm water 2 Roma tomatoes, diced ¼ red onion, minced 1 cucumber, peeled and diced 4 bunches fresh parsley (3 cups chopped, with stems discarded) ¼ cup fresh mint, chopped Juice of 2 to 3 lemons 1 tbsp. olive oil ½ tsp. black pepper ¼ cup of pine nuts, lightly toasted

Ingredients

Option: 8 green onions, sliced thinly Instructions

Soak the bulgur in the warm water until it is soft (about 10 minutes). Dice the tomatoes. Mince the red onion. Peel and dice the cucumber. Remove the parsley leaves from the stems and roughly chop them. Remove the mint leaves from the stems and roughly chop them. Combine the parsley and mint into a tight pile on your cutting board. Mince the parsley and mint leaves as best you can.

Option: Pulse the parsley and mint in a food processor. Option: Slice the green onion and mix it with the parsley and mint.
Drain any excess liquid from the bulgur. Juice the lemons.

Toast the pine nuts over a medium heat for about 1 minute. Combine all the ingredients together.
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Low-fat Version
Omit the olive oil and the pine nuts.

Raw Version
Do not toast the pine nuts and omit the bulgur or use sprouted wheat.

Kitchen Equipment
Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Knife Cutting Board Large Mixing Bowl Medium Sized Bowl

Presentation
Make sure everything is well-tossed so that the disparate large tomato or served plain on a white dish.

ingredients do not clump together. This goes well stuffed inside a

Time Management
I prefer my tabouleh when it has had about an hour to sit, though it can be served immediately.

Complementary Food and Drinks
This goes well with a combination of dolmas, hummus, and veggies in tomato sauce.

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Where to Shop
Asian markets and farmers’ markets usually have the best price on large bunches of mint. Bulgur

can be found at Asian markets, Whole Foods, and in most stores that have bulk bins. The rest of the ingredients should be fairly common. Approximate cost per serving is $3.00.

How It Works
Tabouleh is mostly parsley with a heavy mint flavor made light and refreshing by the lemon juice and cucumber and given depth and heartiness by the bulgur and tomato.

Chef’s Notes
The pine nuts are my addition to the traditional tabouleh recipe.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1414.9 (353.7) Calories from Fat 960.5 (240.1) Fat 106.7g (26.7g) Total Carbohydrates 92.5g (23.1g) Dietary Fiber 24.2g (6.1g) Sugars 20.4g (5.1g) Protein 21.1g (5.3g) Salt 7064mg (1766mg) Vitamin A 212% (53%) Vitamin B6 40% (10%) Vitamin C 334% (83.5%) Calcium 25% (6.3%) Iron 59% (14.8%) Thiamin 41% (10.3%) Riboflavin 24% (6%) Niacin 44% (11%)
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Folate 62% (15.5%) Phosphorous 57% (14.3%) Potassium 59% (14.8%) Zinc 38% (9.5%) Magnesium 77% (19.3%) Copper 57% (14.3%)

Interesting Facts
Tabouleh means “a bit spicy.” This dish is also popular in certain parts of South America and variations of it have been popular in the Middle East since the middle ages.

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December 2009|130

Baba Ganoush
Type: Side Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 45 minutes

1 whole eggplant ½ tsp. salt ¼ cup tahini Juice of1 lemon (about 1 tbsp.) 1 clove of garlic 1 tbsp. olive oil

Ingredients

Options: ¼ tsp. paprika, ½ tsp. ground cumin,1 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tsp. pomegranate syrup, 1 tsp.
minced parsley, 1 tsp. minced mint, 2 tbsp. chopped walnuts

Instructions The Grill Method
heat.

Light your grill and allow the flames to die down and the coals to come to about a medium

Brush the whole eggplant with oil.

Place it on the grill, rotating it every 7-10 minutes, grilling it until it is soft. Scoop out the inside, pureeing it with all the ingredients except the paprika. Plate up the babaganoush and top it with any of the optional ingredients. Roast the eggplant on 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until soft. Scoop the eggplant out of the skin and into the blender. Puree all the ingredients except the paprika. Plate up the babaganoush and top it with any of the optional ingredients.

The Oven Method

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Low-fat Version
Omit the tahini and olive oil.

Raw Version
Peel the eggplant and slice it thinly. Salt the eggplant slices and then put a heavy weight on them, allowing them to sit for at least 6 hours. Rinse the eggplant and blend it with all the other ingredients.

Kitchen Equipment
Grill or Oven Tongs or Baking Dish Brush Blender or Food Processor Measuring Spoon Measuring Cup Spatula

Presentation
If you are using paprika, sprinkle it around the baba ganoush. If you are using minced parsley or mint, you can sprinkle it evenly or you can do several areas of mint and parsley around the dip. If not spread it evenly across. you are using pomegranate syrup, drizzle it around the dip, but do

Time Management
This is best when eaten fresh, but it will last several days in your refrigerator.

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Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with pita, tomato, olives, and sliced cucumber.

Where to Shop
When choosing your eggplant, make sure the skin is firm without any blemishes. The green stem should still look relatively fresh. Tahini can be found at Sprouts, Whole Foods, Central Market, any Middle Eastern market, and most Asian markets. Approximate cost per serving is $.75.

How It Works
Grilling the baba ganoush gives the eggplant a mild smoky flavor while softening the inside and juice lightens the taste, and the tahini makes it very creamy. crisping the skin, making the inside of the eggplant easy to remove. The garlic gives bite, the lemon

Chef’s Notes
I used to make baba ganoush by roasting the eggplant in the oven until I took the time to roast it on my grill. Now, the oven baba ganoush always tastes insufficient!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1092.0 (273.0) Calories from Fat 702.0 (175.5) Fat 78.0g (19.5g) Total Carbohydrates 72.6g (18.2g) Dietary Fiber 24.4g (6.1g) Sugars 13.5g (3.4g) Protein 24.9g (6.2g) Salt 2463mg (616mg) Vitamin A 25% (6.3%) Vitamin B6 32% (8%) Vitamin C 102% (25.5%)
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Calcium 54% (13.5%) Iron 68% (17%) Thiamin 125% (31.3%) Riboflavin 39% (9.8%) Niacin 49% (12.3%) Folate 49% (12.3%) Phosphorous 97% (24.3%) Potassium 33% (8.3%) Zinc 43% (10.8%) Magnesium 44% (11%) Copper 112% (28%)

Interesting Facts
Baba ganoush is also known as eggplant salad.

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December 2009|134

Dukkah
Type: Spice Mix Time to Prepare: 10 minutes Serves: 1

¼ cup of coriander seeds 3 tbsp. of sesame seeds 2 tbsp. of cumin seeds 1 tsp. of fennel seeds 1 tbsp. of black peppercorns ¼ tsp. of crushed red pepper 1 tsp. of dried mint leaves 1 tsp. of salt ½ cup of hazelnuts ¼ cup of walnuts

Ingredients

Instructions

On a medium heat, toast the coriander seeds, sesame seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, peppercorns, and crushed red pepper until you can smell the spice aroma wafting up from the pan (about 2-3 minutes.) Make sure to slowly and continuously stir the spices so they do not burn. Remove the spices from the pan and place them in a mortar. Grind the spices using a pestle until they are coarsely ground. Add in the mint leaves, salt, and nuts. Serve everything mixed together. Grind these together until very coarsely ground.

Option: Use a small blender to grind the spices and nuts.

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Kitchen Equipment
Saute Pan Spatula Mortar and Pestle or Small Blender Measuring Spoon Measuring Cup

Presentation
Leave the spice mix in the mortar or place it in a shallow bowl. A stone bowl or dish looks best.

Time Management
This mix will last for days, so you can make a large batch and then store it in a sealed jar in your pantry.

Complementary Food and Drinks
This is traditionally served with olive oil and bread. The bread is dipped in the olive oil and then dipped in the dukkah. It is also used as a garnish for veggies and salads.

Where to Shop
Sprouts is the best place to get these ingredients as they have an amazing bulk spice selection. Buying in bulk helps keep down the cost of the ingredients significantly. Price per serving is approximately $3.00.

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How It Works
Toasting the spices activates the volatile oils in them, causing them to release quite a bit of flavor. so that there are small areas of different flavors when the spice mix hits the tongue instead of one homogenous flavor.

It also deepens the flavors of the spices. These are then coarsely ground instead of finely ground

Chef’s Notes
There are hundreds of different dukkah recipes and each one is very personal. The above example, however, is one of my favorite and makes a great springboard for making your own!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 758.9 Calories from Fat 548.3 Fat 60.9g Total Carbohydrates 34.2g Dietary Fiber 18.9g Sugars 0.0g Protein 18.5g Salt 2356mg

Vitamin A 3% Vitamin B6 27% Vitamin C 18% Calcium 38% Iron 92% Thiamin 29% Niacin 13% Folate 23% Phosphorous 42% Riboflavin 11%

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Potassium 30% Zinc 26% Magnesium 66% Copper 93%

Interesting Facts
Dukkah can be used as a salad topping and is sometimes used like bread crumbs. Dried chickpeas are sometimes used instead of walnuts.

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December 2009|138

Harissa Sauce
Type: Condiment Serves: 1 Time to Prepare: 15 minutes

2 tbsp. of crushed red pepper flakes 2 tomatoes ¼ cup of water ½ tsp. of cumin seed ¼ tsp. of caraway seed ½ tsp. of coriander seed 1 tsp. of olive oil

Ingredients

Option: 1 roasted red bell pepper Option: 1 slice of preserved lemon Instructions

Take the crushed red pepper flakes, cumin seed, caraway seed, and coriander seed and sauté them in a small, dry pot for about 1 minute on a medium heat. Add in the tomatoes and water and boil them until they are soft. Smash the tomatoes until they turn into a sauce and add in the olive oil.

Option: Blend everything with the roasted red bell pepper and/or preserved lemon.

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December 2009|139

Hummus
Type: Appetizer Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 10 minutes

2 cups of cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans) ½ cup of tahini ¼ tsp. of salt 1 clove of garlic Juice of 1 lemon Water Paprika for garnish 2 tbsp. of olive oil

Ingredients

Instructions

Rinse the beans. Juice the lemon. Blend everything together except for the water and paprika until you have a smooth dip. You will need to add just enough water to get your blender to blend the dip, which varies from Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika. blender to blender (you can also use water content to modify the consistency of your hummus.)

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Low-fat Version
Omit the tahini and olive oil and add a little extra water to get the beans to blend into a smooth dip.

Kitchen Equipment
Colander to rinse the beans Small Knife Blender or Food Processor Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon

Presentation
Place this in a shallow bowl and/or sprinkle paprika over the top, add an olive to the middle, drizzle olive oil around the edges.

Time Management
This takes very little time to make, but will keep for a week if covered and left refrigerated.

Generally, I cheat a bit and purchase canned chickpeas instead of spending hours cooking my own.

Complementary Food and Drinks
The obvious choice is to serve this with pita bread, but you can also use this as a pizza spread, a veggie burger spread, or mixed in with rice.

Where to Shop
All of the ingredients except for the tahini are commonly available. For the tahini, check out Whole
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Foods, Sprouts, Central Market, any Middle Eastern market, and most gourmet markets.

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How It Works
The tahini and olive oil make the chickpeas creamy when they are blended, the lemon juices

brightens what would otherwise be a heavy dip, and the garlic gives it a pungent bite.

Chef’s Notes
I’ve been told that this hummus is as good as the hummus served in the Middle East!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1246.2 (311.5) Fat 68.6g (17.1g) Calories from Fat 617.3 (154.3)

Total Carbohydrates 115.3g (28.8g) Dietary Fiber 31.2g (7.8g) Sugars 1.1g (0.3g) Protein 41.9g (10.5g) Salt 603mg (151mg) Vitamin A 3% (0.8%)

Vitamin B6 30% (7.5%) Vitamin C 48% (12%) Calcium 24% (6%) Iron 60% (15%) Thiamin 66% (16.5%) Riboflavin 18% (4.5%) Niacin 24% (6%) Folate 96% (24%) Phosphorous 97% (24.3%) Potassium 38% (9.5%) Zinc 52% (13%) Magnesium 49% (12.3%) Copper 90% (22.5%)

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Interesting Facts
Hummus can be made with or without tahini, the Turkish version usually made without. Tahini is a paste made from sesame seeds.

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Muhammara
Type: Side Serves: 4 large servings Time to Prepare: 10 minutes

¾ cup bread crumbs Cold water (about 3 tbsp.) 1 onion, diced ½ cup olive oil ¾ cup crushed walnuts 2 tbsp. paprika ¼ tsp. cumin ¼ tsp. salt 2 roasted red bell peppers 1 tsp. Aleppo pepper (1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper can be substituted) 1 tbsp. pomegranate molasses 1 tbsp. pine nuts or crushed walnuts

Ingredients

Instructions

Add enough cold water to the bread crumbs to make a thick puree (the amount of water will depend on how dry your bread crumbs are). Dice the onion. Sauté the onions on a medium heat in the oil until lightly browned. Add in the walnuts, paprika, cumin, and salt. Remove from the heat. Puree all the ingredients except the pine nuts or crushed walnuts. Garnish the dip with pine nuts or crushed walnuts. Sauté this for about 3 minutes, reducing the heat to medium low if necessary.

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Low-fat Version
Omit the olive oil from the dish.

Raw Version
Only use 1 ½ onions and do not sauté anything. Allow the dip to sit for about an hour before serving.

Kitchen Equipment
Mixing Bowl Sauté Pan Blender or Food Processor Spatula Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Stirring Spoon

Presentation
Sprinkle some of the Aleppo peppers in the middle of the dish or give the dish a swirl of chili oil.

Time Management
Start getting all your ingredients in the blender while the onion is sautéing so that as soon as it’s done, you can get to work.

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December 2009|145

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with pita or zucchini medallions.

Where to Shop
Look for pomegranate molasses at an Asian or Middle Eastern market. Both Trader Joe’s and Fresh & Easy have great prices on roasted red peppers if you don’t want to make your own. $1.25. You’ll also be able to find vegan bread crumbs at Trader Joe’s. Approximate cost per serving is

How It Works
The soaked breadcrumbs serve to bind all the ingredients of the dip. The walnuts make it thick and give it a strong depth. The oil makes it creamy while the roasted red pepper imparts sweetness, color, and a soft, silky texture to the dip. The Aleppo pepper gives it heat while the onion adds pungent sweetness. This is sautéed first so that it softens and so its sugars start to caramelize, giving greater weight to the flavor of the onion.

Chef’s Notes
If you can find Aleppo pepper (I usually get mine at Penzey’s spice store), I very much suggest using it. It gives a much more unique, complex flavor to the dish than the standard crushed red pepper.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 2124.1 (531.0) Calories from Fat 1543.3 (385.8) Fat 171.5g (42.9g) Total Carbohydrates 115.3g (28.8g) Dietary Fiber 17.7g (4.4g) Sugars 20.1g (5.0g) Protein 29.9g (7.5g)
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|146

Salt 1195mg (299mg) Vitamin A 0% (0%) Vitamin B6 59% (14.8%) Vitamin C 62% (15.5%) Calcium 36% (9%) Iron 43% (10.8%) Thiamin 87% (21.8%) Riboflavin 36% (9%) Niacin 35% (8.8%) Folate 29% (7.3%) Phosphorous 59% (14.8%) Potassium 37% (9.3%) Zinc 33% (8.3%) Magnesium 57% (14.3%) Copper 90% (22.5%)

Interesting Facts
Muhammara can be used as a sauce as well as a dip. This dip originated in Aleppo, hence the use of Aleppo peppers.

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Food from the Middle East

December 2009|147

Taratoor
Type: Condiment Time to Prepare: 5 minutes Serves: 1

1 clove of garlic, minced Juice of 3 lemons (about 3 tbsp.) ¼ cup of tahini ¼ tsp. salt ¼ cup of water

Ingredients

Option: ½ tsp. of fresh dill Option: Pinch of cayenne pepper Instructions

Mince the garlic.

Juice the lemons. Combine all the ingredients together.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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Kitchen Equipment
Knife Cutting Board Mixing Bowl Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Stirring Spoon

Presentation
Garnish the top of the sauce, once it is served, with paprika or cayenne.

Time Management
This will keep in your refrigerator for several weeks, though it will get thick after the first day, so you’ll need to add extra water just before serving.

Complementary Food and Drinks
This is perfect over rice or with sandwiches. It also makes a great salad dressing.

Where to Shop
Tahini can be found at any Middle Eastern market, most Asian markets, Sprouts, Whole Foods, and it is starting to even show up in some conventional markets. Approximate cost per serving is $2.00.

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How It Works
The lemon juice brightens the flavor of the tahini and thins it a bit while the water is used to further thin this into a sauce. The garlic gives the sauce a bit of a bite.

Chef’s Notes
I’ve also made this with chipotle powder for a spicy, smoky flavor with the sauce.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 393 Calories from Fat 288 Fat 32g Total Carbohydrates 15.4g Dietary Fiber 8.8g Sugars 3.0g Protein 11.3g Salt 702mg Vitamin A 3% Vitamin B6 21% Vitamin C 94% Calcium 73% Iron 31% Thiamin 52% Riboflavin 21% Niacin 17% Folate 14% Phosphorous 45% Potassium 10% Zinc 19% Magnesium 17% Copper 51%
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|150

Interesting Facts
Tahini was considered a holy food in Persia during the height of the Persian empire.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|151

Freekah Soup
Type: Soup Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 35 minutes

1 yellow onion, diced 2 tsp. olive oil 1 cup uncooked roasted cracked green wheat (freekah)

Ingredients

Option: 1 cup of bulgur instead of freekah
4 cups of vegetable stock Juice of 1 lemon 1 tomato, diced ½ tsp. of salt 1 tsp. of freshly ground pepper

1 ½ tsp. harissa (a garlic, chili, and olive oil puree) ½ cup of loosely packed cilantro leaves, chopped

Option: ½ cup of split green peas Instructions

1 bunch of spinach, leaves only

Dice the onion. Sauté the onion on a medium heat until it is soft and then add in the freekah and harissa. Stir until everything is coated in the harissa. Slowly add in the vegetable stock, keeping the soup simmering. While it is simmering, chop the cilantro, juice the lemon, and dice the tomato. Let it cook for about 20 minutes and then add in all of the other ingredients, simmering for another five minutes.

heat to low, cooking the soup for 20 minutes before adding in the tomato, cilantro, etc.

Option: Add the peas as soon as the veggie broth comes to a boil, cover the pot, and reduce the

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|152

Low-fat Version
Omit the oil, sautéing the onion in a dry pot until it is soft.

Raw Version
Use sprouted wheat and blend half the onion, tomato, with 2 cups of water instead of 4 cups of stock to make the soup broth.

Kitchen Equipment
Medium Size Pot Stirring Spoon Measuring Cup Knife Cutting Board Measuring Spoon

Presentation
If you have left over lemons, you can garnish the sides of the bowl with sliced lemons with sprigs of cilantro wedged between the lemon and the bowl.

Time Management
This is something that should be eaten within a few minutes of the soup being finished or else the cracked wheat will continue to absorb the liquid and it will turn into a stew.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of toasted bread dressed with a touch of chili oil and garlic.
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

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Where to Shop
Cracked wheat can be found most Middle Eastern and Asian markets. Bulgur can be

substituted for freekah. Harissa sauce can usually be found at Middle Eastern markets. If you can’t find it, you can substitute a puree of roasted red pepper, cayenne pepper, a dash of cumin, a dash of coriander, and juice of a lemon. Approximate cost per serving is $1.50.

How It Works
The onion makes the soup slightly sweet and pungent and enhances the flavor of the veggie broth. Harissa is used not only to impart heat to the broth, but to impart tanginess from the lemon used in it and cumin and coriander flavors, which are also used in making harissa. The cracked wheat will absorb all these flavors and thicken the soup. The tomato, cilantro, etc. are added at the end so that their flavors remain relatively fresh.

Chef’s Notes
I used to get this soup as an appetizer at my favorite Egyptian restaurant, which I would go to at least once a week!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 982.2 (245.4) Calories from Fat 274.0 (68.5) Fat 30.4g (7.6g) Total Carbohydrates 147.8g (37.0g) Dietary Fiber 36.5g (9.1g) Sugars 13.5g (3.4g) Protein 27.3g (7.3g) Salt 3163mg (791mg) Vitamin A 423% (105.8%) Vitamin B6 69% (17.3%) Vitamin C 228% (57%)
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|154

Calcium 43% (10.8%) Iron 74% (18.5%) Thiamin 47% (11.8%) Riboflavin 52% (13%) Niacin 51% (12.8%) Folate 189% (47.3%) Phosphorous 65% (16.3%) Potassium 81% (20.3%) Zinc 33% (8.3%) Magnesium 131% (32.8%) Copper 51% (12.8%)

Interesting Facts
Freekah is also called farik, which is Arabic for “rubbed.”

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|155

Jalik
Type: Soup Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 20 minutes

2 cucumbers (preferably Persian), peeled ½ tsp. of salt 3 cups of plain soy yogurt 1 clove of garlic, minced Juice of 1 lemon (approximately 1 tbsp.) 2 tsp. dill, minced 2 tbsp. of sesame oil 1 tsp. of chopped mint

Ingredients

Instructions

Peel the cucumbers and slice them in half. Deseed them and chop them into about 2” long pieces. Toss them in the salt and let them stand for about 15 minutes. Mix together the soy yogurt, garlic, dill, and lemon juice. Chop the mint. Pour the sesame oil over the top and garnish with the mint.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|156

Low-fat Version
Omit the sesame oil.

Raw Version
Use pureed coconut instead of soy yogurt.

Kitchen Equipment
Mixing Bowl Knife Cutting Board Measuring Spoon Measuring Cup Stirring Spoon

Presentation
Garnish with a sprig of mint or with diced mint sprinkled in the center of the bowl.

Time Management
The longer you let the soup sit, the better it gets. Overnight in the refrigerator is preferable.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of olives.

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Where to Shop
All these ingredients should be fairly common, though you’ll get the best price on the mint at an Asian market. Approximate cost per serving is $1.50.

How It Works
Salting the cucumber draws out some of the liquid from it, which combines with the yogurt to make the sauce for the soup. The lemon juice brightens the flavor and the salt makes a nice contrast to the freshness of the lemon and cucumber.

Chef’s Notes
This soup looks like it should be a sweet soup, so be prepared for something more tart and salty

than sweet.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 644.2 (161.0) Calories from Fat 275.8 (68.9) Fat 30.6g (7.7g) Total Carbohydrates 74.7g (18.7g) Dietary Fiber 5.8g (1.5g) Sugars 23.6g (5.9g) Protein 17.4g (4.4g) Salt 679mg (170mg) Vitamin A 6% (1.5%) Vitamin B6 10% (2.5%) Vitamin C 57% (14.3%) Calcium 126% (31.5%) Iron 29% (7.3%) Thiamin 8% (2%) Riboflavin 6% (1.5%) Niacin 1% (0.3%)
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|158

Folate 14% (3.5%) Phosphorous 8% (2%) Potassium 16% (4%) Zinc 5% (1.3%) Magnesium 12% (3%) Copper 14% (3.5%)

Interesting Facts
This is very similar to a Jewish cucumber and yogurt soup called tarato.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|159

Mercimek Corbasi (Turkish Red Lentil Soup)
Type: Soup, Middle Eastern, Low-fat Time to Prepare: 45 minutes Serves: 3

1 onion, diced 2 cloves of garlic, crushed 1 carrot, diced 1 tsp. of olive oil 4 cups of water or veggie stock 1 tbsp. of tomato paste 1 tbsp. of roasted red pepper ½ tsp. of crushed red pepper 1 cup of red lentils 1 tsp. of salt

Ingredients

Option: 2 tbsp. of olive oil and 1 tbsp. of sweet paprika as a garnish Instructions

Dice the onion and carrot. Crush the garlic. minutes.) Add in the crushed garlic and sauté this for another 3 minutes. together until it is thoroughly combined. Once the liquid is simmering, add in the lentils. Bring this to a boil and cover the pot. Reduce the heat to low. Remove from the heat. Blend the soup with the tsp. of salt until it is smooth. Cook this for 25 minutes. Add in the water, tomato paste, roasted red pepper, and crushed red pepper, stirring everything Saute the onion and carrot over a medium heat until the onion is slightly browned (about 5

Option: Heat the olive oil and paprika on a medium heat, stirring them together until they are
the finished soup.
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

combined into paprika oil. Allow this to cook for no more than a minute. Swirl the paprika oil onto

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|160

Low-fat Version (no oil added)
Sautee the onion, carrot, and garlic in a thin layer of water instead of olive oil.

Kitchen Equipment
Medium-sized Pot Stirring Spoon Knife Cutting Board Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Blender or Immersion Blender

Presentation
This soup is rather red, so it needs a splash of color. I find a

single basil leaf in the center of the soup or a sprinkling of cilantro make a large difference in the presentation. The paprika oil also looks very nice. It presents swirls of a deeper red against the lighter backdrop of the soup.

Time Management
If you want to save a few minutes on the recipe or avoid more clean-up, you don’t have to blend the soup. The texture will be different, but the taste will still be great. If you don’t blend it, reduce the amount of liquid by 1 cup.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a few triangles of toasted pita and a side of tomato-stewed green beans.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|161

Where to Shop
All of these ingredients should be commonly available. Price per serving is about $1.00.

How It Works
The onion and carrot provide a sweet base for the soup and also acquire a deep flavor as their sugars caramelize. The tomato paste is used because it creates a rich broth when stirred into the water and the flavor of this broth then cooks into the lentils. The roasted red pepper adds smoothness and even more sweetness which is balanced by the heat of the crushed red pepper.

Chef’s Notes
I enjoy the paprika flavor from the paprika oil, so I sometimes add the paprika to the sautéing onions and carrot to get that flavor in the soup without adding in all the extra oil.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 764.8 (254.9) Fat 5.9g (2.0g) Total Carbohydrates 127.0g (42.3g) Dietary Fiber 46.9g (15.6g) Sugars 8.5g (2.8g) Protein 50.9g (17.0g) Salt 2365mg (788mg) Vitamin A 352% (117.3%) Vitamin B6 61% (20.3%) Vitamin C 46% (15.3%) Calcium 15% (5%) Iron 104% (34.7%) Thiamin 51% (17%) Riboflavin 25% (8.3%)
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Calories from Fat 53.3 (17.8)

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|162

Niacin 35% (11.7%) Folate 251% (83.7%) Phosphorous 105% (35%) Potassium 72% (24%) Zinc 50% (16.7%) Magnesium 53% (17.7%) Copper 76% (25.3%)

Interesting Facts
Mercimek corbasi translates into “lentil soup.” Variations of mercimek abound all over the Middle East, with the northern Turkish variation using green lentils instead of red.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|163

Shawrbat Adas Majroosha (Pureed Lentil Soup)
Type: Soup Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 40 minutes

1 yellow onion, chopped 1 small, hot red pepper, minced 1 tsp. of toasted cumin seed 1 tbsp. of olive oil 1 tsp. of coriander seed ½ tsp. of freshly ground pepper ½ tsp. of saffron 4 cups water 1 cup of red lentils 1 tsp. of salt Juice of 2 lemons (approximately 2 tbsp.)

Ingredients

Instructions

Chop the onion. Mince the pepper. Sauté the onion in the olive oil on a medium heat for about 5-7 minutes and then add in the pepper. Sauté this for another 2 minutes. Add the coriander, black pepper, and saffron, sautéing everything one more minute. Add in the water, bringing it to a boil. Add the lentils and return the soup to a boil. Cover the pot. Reduce the heat to low and cook the soup for about 20 minutes. Puree the soup and continue simmering it for another 5 minutes. Remove it from the heat and add in the lemon juice and salt.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|164

Low-fat Version
Instead of sautéing the ingredients before adding the water, simply add all the ingredients with the water and omit the oil.

Raw Version
Use 2 cups of water and blend half the onion and all the chili pepper with it to create the broth. Use sprouted lentils and once everything is pureed, allow the soup to sit for about 30 minutes.

Kitchen Equipment
Medium Size Pot with Lid Stirring Spoon Blender or Immersion Blender Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Knife Cutting Board

Presentation
Garnish this with cut parsley and/or whole, hot, red peppers or tomatoes.

Time Management
Watch the soup once you start sautéing the spices to ensure that they don’t burn. If they start to blacken, immediately take the pot off the heat and add the water to the pot as fast as possible. the heat, stir the spices into the pot, and then add the water to the pot.
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Also, pay attention to the pepper. If it starts to release capsaicin in the air, remove the pot from

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|165

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a side of toasted pita bread dressed in garlic.

Where to Shop
All the ingredients should be fairly common, though you’ll get the best price on the spices and lentils if you can get them from bulk bins. Approximate cost per serving is $1.00.

How It Works
The onion should turn slightly brown and the chili pepper should just start to caramelize before the spices are added. Cooking the pepper longer will make the pepper bitter and also release a lot of minute to deepen their flavors. The lentils are cooked extra long so that they are easy to puree and the lemon juice is added at the end so it retains its fresh flavor. The salt is added at the end so that it does not toughen the lentils while they cook. heat into the air, making the kitchen a tough place to operate! The spices are toasted for at most a

Chef’s Notes
I love this version of lentil soup, but beware the heat! If you can’t handle the heat, omit the pepper or use 2 tbsp. of roasted red pepper instead.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 549.9 (137.5) Calories from Fat 133.7 (33.4) Fat 14.9g (3.7g) Total Carbohydrates 76.6g (19.2g) Dietary Fiber 32.7g (8.2g) Sugars 4.7g (1.2g) Protein 27.4g (6.9g) Salt 2348mg (587mg)
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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|166

Vitamin A 10% (2.5%) Vitamin B6 47% (11.8%) Vitamin C 77% (19.3%) Calcium 10% (2.5%) Iron 45% (11.3%) Thiamin 63% (15.8%) Riboflavin 17% (4.3%) Niacin 17% (4.3%) Folate 55% (13.8%) Phosphorous 50% (12.5%) Potassium 37% (9.3%) Zinc 34% (8.5%) Magnesium 36% (9%) Copper 31% (7.8%)

Interesting Facts
Shawrbat is a name for soup. Lentils are the most common thickening ingredient in Middle Eastern soups and stews.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|167

Shorba Hummus (Chickpea Soup)
Type: Soup Serves: 8 Time to Prepare: 1 hour 20 minutes + time to soak the chickpeas

3 cups of soaked chickpeas, rinsed 2 onions, chopped 8 cups of water 2 tsp. of salt ½ tsp. of turmeric 1 tsp. of cumin 1 tsp. of coriander seeds 1/8 tsp. of cayenne pepper 1 tsp. of freshly ground black pepper 2 tbsp. of lemon juice 2 potatoes, diced

Ingredients

Option: 3 cups of spinach leaves Instructions

Soak the chickpeas overnight, rinsing them and discarding the liquid. Chop the onion. Boil the 8 cups of water and add the chickpeas and onion. Towards the end of simmering, chop the potatoes. Add in the potatoes, salt, turmeric, cumin, coriander, cayenne, and simmer this for 10 more minutes. Remove from the heat and add the lemon juice and black pepper. Reduce to a simmer and let it simmer for 1 hour.

Option: Add in the spinach leaves just after the soup comes off the heat.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|168

Kitchen Equipment
Large Bowl to soak the chickpeas Colander Knife Cutting Board Measuring Cup Stirring Spoon Measuring Spoon Large Pot

Presentation
Sprinkle the top of the soup with minced cilantro and a few chopped nuts.

Time Management
You can save time by using canned chickpeas. If you do this, boil the onion in the water and don’t add the canned chickpeas until you add the potato. You’ll need about twice as many canned chickpeas as you do dried.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with baked rice or toasted bread.

Where to Shop
All the ingredients should be readily available, though you’ll get the best price on the spices if you get them from bulk bins. Approximate cost per serving is $.50.

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How It Works
Soaking the chickpeas hydrates them, allowing them to cook quicker, and also gets rid of most of onion so the onion can infuse the broth with the long cook time and that, in turn, infuses the chickpeas. Turmeric is used for tanginess and color, cumin for depth, and coriander for an aromatic quality. Lemon juice lightens the flavor of the soup, makes it tangy, and is added at the end so it can maintain its fresh flavor. the indigestible sugars from the outer coating of the chickpeas. They are then cooked with the

Chef’s Notes
This is a very easy soup to make and goes incredibly well with hot sauce mixed into the broth.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1734.7 (433.7) Calories from Fat 76.7 (19.2) Fat 8.5g (2.1g) Total Carbohydrates 356.3g (89.1g) Dietary Fiber 57.7g (14.4g) Sugars 13.4g (3.4g) Protein 58.2g (14.6g) Salt 4696mg (1174mg) Vitamin A 3% (0.8%) Vitamin B6 322% (80.5%) Vitamin C 332% (83%) Calcium 43% (10.8%) Iron 98% (24.5%) Thiamin 66% (16.5%) Riboflavin 36% (9%) Niacin 53% (13.3%) Folate 160% (40%) Phosphorous 129% (32.3%) Potassium 161% (40.3%)
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Food from the Middle East

December 2009|170

Zinc 73% (18.3%) Magnesium 114% (28.5%) Copper 119% (29.8%)

Interesting Facts
The Latin name for chickpea is cicer, from which Cicero derived his name. Chickpeas have been domesticated since at least 7,000 B.C.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|171

Tarato
Type: Soup Serves: 3 Time to Prepare: 10 minutes + 2 hours to chill

2 cucumbers, diced 3 cups of plain soy yogurt 3 cups of water 1/8 tsp. of salt 2 tbs. of olive oil Juice of 1 lemon 2 tbsp. of crushed walnuts

Ingredients

Instructions

Dice the cucumbers.

Combine all of the ingredients except the walnuts. Chill this for 2-3 hours. Sprinkle the crushed walnuts on top just before serving.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|172

Kitchen Equipment
Cutting Board Knife Large Mixing Bowl Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Stirring Spoon

Presentation
Serve this in a small, deep bowl. If the bowl is too wide and shallow, the walnuts will seem to be swallowed by the soup.

Time Management
To save on the chilling time, use soy yogurt, water, and lemon juice straight from the refrigerator to make the soup. That way, it’s ready to go as soon as you’re done mixing everything. The flavors won’t mingle as well since they won’t have time to sit, but you don’t have to wait two extra hours either.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Cous cous with fresh mint is a great accompaniment to this soup.

Where to Shop
You can find soy yogurt at most stores, though the easiest places to get it will be Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Sprouts, Central Market, and Fresh & Easy. I like to get walnuts at Sprouts so I can purchase them in bulk.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

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How It Works
The yogurt itself is a bit too thick to make a palatable soup, which is why it is thinned with the water. Lemon juice is added to it to give it tartness while the cucumber provides some texture and coolness. Chilling the soup adds to its refreshing quality and gives the flavors time to meld. The small amount of salt enhances the other flavors. The walnuts are added for a contrasting deep flavor and are not mixed in for presentation purposes.

Chef’s Notes
This soup reminds me of tzatziki sauce, a yogurt-based sauce with dill.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 582.5 (194.2) Calories from Fat 174.8 (58.3) Fat 19.4g (6.5g) Total Carbohydrates 82.2g (27.4g) Dietary Fiber 7.0g (2.3g) Sugars 41.5g (13.8g) Protein 19.8g (6.6g) Salt 389mg (130mg) Vitamin A 6% (2%) Vitamin B6 19% (6.3%) Vitamin C 55% (18.3%) Calcium 128% (42.7%) Iron 30% (10%) Thiamin 8% (2.7%) Riboflavin 3% (1%) Niacin 3% (1%) Folate 20% (6.7%) Phosphorous 13% (4.3%) Potassium 21% (7%) Zinc 7% (2.3%)

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|174

Magnesium 19% (6.3%) Copper 19% (6.3%)

Interesting Facts
Tarato originated in Bulgaria and was brought to Israel by the Bulgarian Jews. Tarato is often eaten during hot summer days.

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Recipe by Chef Jason Wyrick

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|175

Baklava
Type: Dessert Serves: 32 Time to Prepare: 1 hour 30 minutes + 8 hours to set

Ingredients The Pastries

1 ½ pounds blanched almonds 1 pound walnuts 2/3 cup sugar 2 tsp. cinnamon 8 oz. vegan margarine 1 pound phyllo dough ¼ cup of water 1 tbsp. of rose water 2 cups sweet agave nectar 1 ½ cups water 2 cups sugar ½ tsp. ground cinnamon 1 tsp. vanilla extract or 1 whole vanilla bean 1 tsp. orange zest 15-16 whole allspice berries or 2 tsp. ground allspice

The Syrup

Instructions

Melt the margarine. Grind the nuts and allspice in a food processor until they are coarse. Combine the water with the rose water in a spritzer and set it aside. Brush a 13” x 9” x 2” pan with some of the melted margarine. Take a sheet of phyllo dough and place it on the bottom of the pan. Brush it lightly with the margarine. Repeat the layering and brushing so you have ten sheets total. Place a layer of 1/3 of the nut and spice mix on this. Spritz the nut layer with the water/rose water.
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Mix the nuts with the cinnamon, allspice, and sugar.

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Cover the nut layer with six sheets of phyllo, brushing each layer with melted margarine. Add another layer of 1/3 of the nuts and spritz with the rose water solution. Repeat the process for adding another six layers of phyllo. Top this with the remaining 1/3 of the nut mixture, spritzing it with more rose water. Add 8 more layers of phyllo dough, brushing each one with melted margarine. Cut the baklava into 32 triangles by making three cuts along the width of the pan so that you have four rows. Slice down the middle of each row such that you are slicing down the length of the pan. Slice each of those rows in half again along the length of the pan. There should now be 16 rectangles of baklava. Give the baklava one last spritz of rose water. Bake the baklava on 350 degrees for 45 minutes. While it is baking, make the syrup. Zest the orange. Simmer all the syrup ingredients together for about ten minutes. Once the baklava is done baking, pour the syrup on it and allow it to sit for at least 8 hours. To make the triangles, slice along one diagonal of each of the rectangles.

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Kitchen Equipment
13” x 9” x 2” Baking Dish Brush Food Processor Very Sharp Knife Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Spritzer Small Pot

Presentation
Sprinkle some smashed pistachios on top, prop a cinnamon stick against the baklava, and sprinkle cinnamon around the plate.

Time Management
There are a couple tricks you can do to make the recipe easier. First, add the melted margarine to a spritzer so that you can spray each layer of phyllo instead of brushing it. Second, you can place the unbaked baklava in the refrigerator for an hour to tighten it so that it is easier to cut. Finally, if you are not quick at doing the phyllo layers, cover your phyllo with a barely damp towel so that it does not dry out.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve baklava with a strong cup of coffee.

Where to Shop
I prefer to use whole wheat phyllo, which I usually have to purchase at Sprouts or Whole Foods. If
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you can get the nuts and spices from bulk bins, you’ll save quite a bit of money. Vegan margarine can be found at the above mentioned stores as well as Trader Joe’s, Central Market, and Fresh & Easy. It’s even showing up in some conventional markets. For the rose water, you’ll probably have to go to a Middle Eastern or Asian market and if you can’t find it, just use plain water. Approximate cost per serving is $.75.

How It Works
Brushing each piece of phyllo crisps the phyllo as it bakes and also gives it a very rich taste as well as keeping it hydrated while you make the baklava. Sugar is added to the nut mix so that it caramelizes during the baking process, making the nut layer tight. Rose water is spritzed on these layers not only to add a subtle fragrance, but to help keep the sugar from burning. It’s sprinkled on the topmost layer so that it will slightly puff. The baklava is baked before the syrup is added so a bit runny, but that helps all the phyllo sheets absorb it by making sure there is enough liquid to penetrate to the bottom of the baklava. I cut my baklava before baking because I find it much easier to handle that way. that the phyllo is a bit dry, which helps it absorb all the gooey liquid. You will find that the syrup is

Chef’s Notes
Making baklava is a chore, but with the amount that you get, it’s well worth it, especially if you use fresh ingredients like vanilla bean. The taste is complex and decadent!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 15,230.3 (475.9) Calories from Fat 8423.1 (263.2) Fat 935.9g (29.2g) Total Carbohydrates 1453.0g (45.4g) Dietary Fiber 119.3g (3.7g) Sugars 1064.0g (33.3g) Protein 248.7g (7.8g) Salt 5970mg (187mg) Vitamin A 327% (10.2%)
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Vitamin B6 182% (5.7%) Vitamin C 11% (0.3%) Calcium 272% (8.5%) Iron 372% (11.6%) Thiamin 381% (11.9%) Riboflavin 465% (14.5%) Niacin 254% (7.9%) Folate 257% (8.0%) Phosphorous 532% (16.6%) Potassium 264% (8.3%) Zinc 266% (8.3%) Magnesium 704% (22%) Copper 838% (26.2%)

Interesting Facts
There is a great deal of debate amongst food historians about the place and time of origin of baklava, with some claiming it was created during the height of ancient Mesopotamia, others version of baklava didn’t spring up until the early stages of the Ottoman empire claiming it was served during the reign of the Byzantine empire, and others claiming that the modern

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Boughasha (cigar pastries)
Type: Dessert Time to Prepare: 40 minutes Serves: 14

The Pastry ½ cup of chopped walnuts 1 ½ tbsp. of sugar ¼ lb. of vegan margarine, melted 14 sheets of phyllo dough The Syrup 1 ¼ lb. of sugar 1 cup of water 1 ½ tsp. of lemon juice 1 tsp. of rose water

Ingredients

Instructions

Combine the chopped walnuts and sugar in a bowl and set it aside. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Oil 2 baking sheets with ¼ of the melted margarine. With each sheet of phyllo, brush it with melted margarine and then fold it in half along the diagonal, making a double layered triangle. Again, brush the top of the triangle. Fold in the closed side of the phyllo triangles about 1”. Along that inch, sprinkle some of the filling (about 1 tsp.) Roll into a cigar shape. drying out. It is best if you brush all the phyllo triangles before filling them as this will help keep the phyllo from

Place the finished rolls on the baking sheets and bake them for 20 minutes. While they bake, make the syrup. the sugar dissolves. Boil the sugar, water, and lemon juice over a medium high heat, continuously stirring to make sure

Once it has dissolved, stop stirring and let it continue to boil for about 5 minutes. Remove it from the heat and add in the rose water.
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When the pastries are done, moisten each one with a little syrup and serve the rest of the syrup in a dipping dish.

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Kitchen Equipment
Mixing Bowl Small Pot Brush Baking Dish Stirring Spoon Small Spoon Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon

Presentation
Sprinkle each cigar pastry with a touch of confectioner’s sugar and sprinkle some around the plate, too. You can also make dots of syrup on the plate amongst the sprinkled sugar.

Time Management
This works best if you do them in assembly line fashion, doing each stage for every serving before moving on to the next stage.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a glass of lemon ginger tea.

Where to Shop
Whole wheat phyllo dough can be purchased at Sprouts and Whole Foods and rose water can be purchased at an Middle Eastern or Asian market. Approximate cost per serving is $.50.

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How It Works
Brushing the phyllo with melted margarine keeps it hydrated and also crisps it in the oven, allowing

it to better absorb the lemony syrup. The phyllo is folded into triangles before filling so that there is less chance that the nuts will tear the phyllo. The syrup is a very light, fragrant syrup, which makes this dessert feel brighter than most phyllo based desserts.

Chef’s Notes
These are a great alternative to the labor intensive process of making baklava and are much better to eat on a warm day.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 4032.1 (288.0) Calories from Fat 1099.8 (78.6) Fat 122.2g (8.7g) Total Carbohydrates 704.4g (50.3g) Dietary Fiber 9.1g (0.7g) Sugars 557.8g (39.8g) Protein 28.7g (2.0g) Salt 2399mg (171mg) Vitamin A 81% (5.8%) Vitamin B6 33% (2.4%) Vitamin C 25% (1.7%) Calcium 60% (4.3%) Iron 118% (8.4%) Thiamin 114% (8.1%) Riboflavin 62% (4.4%) Niacin 59% (4.2%) Folate 70% (5%) Phosphorous 56% (4%) Potassium 71% (5.1%)
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Zinc 28% (2%) Magnesium 76% (5.4%) Copper 146% (10.4%)

Interesting Facts
Phyllo was originally created in the kitchens of the Topkapi palace of the Ottoman Empire.

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Egyptian Couscous
Type: Dessert Serves: 4 Time to Prepare: 10 minutes

1 cup of couscous 1 ¼ cups of warm water ½ tsp. of cinnamon 1 tbsp. of freshly chopped mint leaves ½ cup of pistachios ¼ cup of raisins or currants ¼ cup of sweet agave nectar

Ingredients

Instructions

Warm the water and add the cinnamon.

Let the couscous sit in it until it is all absorbed. Fluff the couscous with a fork every 30 seconds or so. Add in the mint, pistachios, raisins, and agave nectar. Serve at room temperature.

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Raw Version
Use 2 cups of sprouted quinoa instead of couscous and omit the water, simply stirring the mint, cinnamon, agave, raisins, and pistachios into the quinoa.

Kitchen Equipment
Knife Cutting Board Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Small Pot Mixing Bowl Fork

Presentation
Don’t stir all the nuts, mint, and raisins into the couscous, but save half of them to scatter around the top of the plated dish.

Time Management
This is a very fast dessert to make. If you decide not to serve it immediately, don’t add the agave until you are ready to serve it. Otherwise, the couscous tends to clump around the syrup once it sets.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with a cup of hot mint tea.

Where to Shop
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Couscous can be found at Trader Joe’s and most stores with bulk bins while Asian markets will have the best price on fresh mint. Approximate cost per serving is $1.25.

How It Works
The couscous will quickly absorb the warm water, but it will clump unless you continually fluff it with added last so the couscous doesn’t become to condensed with the sweetener. a fork or whisk. The nuts add crunch while the raisins add color and sweetness. The agave is

Chef’s Notes
This is a great dessert that’s very filling and quick to make. It’s got a nice refreshing quality that I find perfect for warm months.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1186.7 (296.7) Calories from Fat 131.1 (32.8) Fat 14.6g (3.6g) Total Carbohydrates 234.5g (58.6g) Dietary Fiber 13.0g (3.3g) Sugars 90.5g (22.6g) Protein 29.4g (7.4g) Salt 110mg (28mg) Vitamin A 2% (0.5%) Vitamin B6 31% (7.8%) Vitamin C 2% (0.5%) Calcium 9% (2.3%) Iron 21% (5.3%) Thiamin 38% (9.5%) Riboflavin 14% (3.5%) Niacin 33% (8.3%) Folate 16% (4%)
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Phosphorous 47% (11.8%) Potassium 25% (6.3%) Zinc 15% (3.8%) Magnesium 31% (7.8%) Copper 46% (11.5%)

Interesting Facts
This is a variation on a contemporary Egyptian dessert made from couscous, mint, and honey.

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Halwa
Type: Dessert Serves: 16 Time to Prepare: 45 minutes + time to cool

½ cup sugar ½ cup sweet agave nectar 1 cup water ¼ cup vegan margarine ¼ cup finely ground almonds ½ cup semolina flour

Ingredients

Option: tahini instead of ground almonds
Cinnamon or powdered sugar for sprinkling

Option: Dried fruit, nuts Instructions

Combine the sugar, sweet agave nectar, water, and cinnamon in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, and cook over low heat for about 20 minutes. Grind the almonds to almond meal. While the syrup is cooking, melt the margarine in a skillet. Add the almonds and the semolina flour. Cook over low heat, stirring steadily, until lightly browned. Add to the syrup (after syrup has cooked 20 minutes), mix well, cover, and cook 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add any optional dried fruit or nuts during the final stages of cooking. Pour the mix into an oiled, shallow (1” to 1.5”) pan. Let it cool to room temperature. Cut into squares and sprinkle with confectioners' sugar or cinnamon.

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Raw Version
Take 1 cup of pitted dates and combine them with ½ cup of almond butter. Form these into squares and refrigerate them for about an hour. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Kitchen Equipment
Blender 2 Small Pots 2 Stirring Spoons Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon Pan Knife

Presentation
Halva looks great with shaved chocolate on top!

Time Management
This can be made in large batches and then frozen.

Complementary Food and Drinks
Serve this with Arabic coffee.

Where to Shop
Semolina can usually be found at Asian and Middle Eastern markets as well as Sprouts and
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Whole Foods. Some of these stores may have almond meal, which means you won’t have to grind your own almonds. Cost per serving is about $.75.

How It Works
The water, sugar, and agave reduce into a thick, heavy tasting syrup. The heavy taste is important because the semolina will cut the syrup’s flavor. The almonds are finely ground so they can help thicken the halva while disappearing evenly into the dessert.

Chef’s Notes
Halva has an intensely sweet flavor, so serve this in small doses!

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories 1656.9 (103.6) Calories from Fat 423.9 (26.5) Fat 47.1g (2.9g) Total Carbohydrates 293.8g (18.4g) Dietary Fiber 6.1g (0.4g) Sugars 224.2g (14.0g) Protein 14.4g (0.9g) Salt 493mg (31mg) Vitamin A 41% (2.6%) Vitamin B6 8% (0.5%) Vitamin C 0% (0%) Calcium 41% (2.6%) Iron 153% (9.6%) Thiamin 34% (2.1%) Riboflavin 21% (1.3%) Niacin 23% (1.4%) Folate 28% (1.8%) Phosphorous 24% (1.5%) Potassium 18% (1.1%)
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Zinc 11% (0.7%) Magnesium 29% (1.8%) Copper 37% (2.3%)

Interesting Facts
Halva can be made from just semolina flour or just almond butter or tahini.

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Künefe
Type: Dessert Time to Prepare: 1 hour Serves: 24

Filling

Ingredients
½ cup raw cashews 1 cup warm water 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice 2 tbsp. cane sugar ½ tsp. sea salt 1 tsp. cardamom

1 cup blanched almonds

Pastry 1 pound kadayif, thawed for 3 hours at room temperature if frozen ¼ cup olive oil ¼ cup canola oil 1/3 tsp. sea salt Syrup 1 cup cane sugar ¾ cup water ½ cup agave syrup 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice 1 tbsp. rosewater

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and line a 9x12 inch baking pan with parchment. smooth. In a large mixing bowl gently breakup the kadayif, loosening the tight coils. In a measuring cup, beat the two oils and salt together. the pastry.

In a food processor, combine all ingredients for the filling and process for 3-5 minutes or until

When well combined, pour mixture over the kadayif and use your hands to work the oil over all of

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Remove half of the kadayif mixture and press it in the bottom of the prepared baking pan. Scrape all filling from the food processor onto the kadayif and smooth it to the edges of the pan. the top even. Place in the upper half of the oven for 35 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. In a medium sized saucepan, combine the sugar, water, agave and lemon juice. Bring mixture to a low boil and then reduce heat to simmer. Stir in rosewater. After 35 minutes, check künefe. If golden brown, remove from oven. If not, allow more baking time, checking in 5 minute increments. When golden brown, remove from oven and place on cooling rack. Ladle the syrup evenly over the pastry until it has all been used. Warm lightly before serving, if desired. Cut into two inch squares and serve immediately or let store covered until ready to serve. Simmer uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until reduced by about half and golden in color. Press the remaining kadayif on top of the filling and press gently to compress the pastry and make

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Chef’s Notes
Traditionally, Künefe is a sweet cheese filled pastry made with whatever cheese is most accessible in the area. In Turkey, a water buffalo cheese or cream is used between layers of kadayif. Kadayif or kunafah, as it is called in Arabic regions (kadafi in Mediterranean areas), can be translated to something like “shredded phyllo.” The found fresh and frozen in a variety of specialty food stores. Here the butter, cheese and sugar from the original, it holds up well to the guilty pleasure of a Middle Eastern-style cheesecake. pastry bears a resemblance to shredded wheat or a jumble of soft little vermicelli noodles. It can be

laden treat gets a vegan makeover with cashews and almonds, agave and olive oil. Though different

Interesting Facts
Künefe dough comes in three types: khishnah, which is rough and looks like noodle threads, na’ama, which is fine and looks like small bits of dough clumped together, and mhayara, which is a mixture of the other two.

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Moroccan Almond Orange Cookies
Type: Dessert Time to Prepare: 30 minutes Serves: 12

½ cup vanilla flavored soy or almond milk ½ cup all-purpose flour ¼ cup granulated sugar 2 teaspoons vegan butter 1/3 cup sliced almonds (raw or lightly toasted) 1/3 cup chopped candied orange peel ½ teaspoon orange zest (optional)

Ingredients

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and oil a baking sheet. melted.

Cook the milk, flour, sugar, and vegan butter in a small saucepan over low heat for 1 minute or until Use a wooden spoon to mix until integrated with no lumps. Do not let the mixture come to a boil. The mixture will be somewhat thin. Spoon evenly onto the baking sheet. Let the cookies cool for 3 minutes on the baking sheet and then remove them with a spatula. Cool on racks. Store in a sealed container. Bake for 10 minutes or until the cookies firm and the edges just begin to brown very lightly. Remove from heat and stir in the almonds, orange peel and optional orange zest.

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Recipe by Sharon Valencik, author of Sweet Utopia, Simply Stunning Desserts

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Kitchen Equipment
Small heavy-bottomed saucepan Baking sheet Wooden spoon Citrus zester/Microplane/fine grater Spatula

Chef’s Notes
Not your typical cookies, these are bursting with flavor, and very quick to make.

Interesting Facts
Citrus is a primary ingredient in Moroccan cuisine.

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Recipe by Sharon Valencik, author of Sweet Utopia, Simply Stunning Desserts

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December 2009|198

Riesling Poached Quince
Type: Dessert Serves: 8 Time to Prepare: 1 hour 15 minutes

2 cups water 2 cups dry or semi-dry Riesling ¾ cup cane sugar 1 stick cinnamon (preferably not cassia) 5 cardamom pods, smashed 2 star anise 2 fresh bay leaves ½ tsp. black peppercorns ⅓ vanilla bean, split ¼ teaspoon fennel seed 4 quince, peeled, halved and seeded

Ingredients

Instructions

pot with a lid.

Combine the water, Riesling, sweetener and spices in a large Dutch oven or other heavy-bottomed

Stir to combine over medium heat until all sugar is dissolved. Turn heat down to medium-low and add the quince halves. Cover pot and let simmer for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, turn each quince half and replace the cover on the pot, allowing the quince to cook for an additional 20-40 minutes or until the halves are soft and easily pricked with a fork.

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Kitchen Equipment
Dutch Oven Stirring Spoon Fork Knife Cutting Board Measuring Cup Measuring Spoon

Presentation and Complementary Food and Drink
Serve warm or chilled with a generous spoonful of the wine syrup. It is also a lovely accompaniment for vegan ice cream or almond cake. Puréed it makes an unexpected and very flavorful filling between cake layers or spread beneath apples or pears in a galette.

Chef’s Notes
There’s no substitute for the ancient quince. A popular Middle Eastern crop, the quince is hard,

astringent and inedible when raw, but a gentle poaching transforms it into the most fragrantly lovely fruit imaginable. Though Riesling is an untraditional component in this classic dish, the honey tones, fruity apple-peach warmth and light mineral tang of this German wine is a great backdrop for the array of spices and adds a sweet complexity that sugar alone couldn’t match.

Nutritional Facts (individual servings in parentheses, does not include any options)
Calories Calories from Fat 0 Fat 0g (0g) Total Carbohydrates 206g (27g) Dietary Fiber 8g (1g) Sugars 150g (18g)
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Recipe by Emilie Hardman of The Conscious Kitchen

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Protein 0g (0g) Salt 16mg (2mg) Vitamin A n/a (n/a) Vitamin B6 4% (.5%) Vitamin C 92% (11.5%) Calcium 4% (.5%) Iron 12% (1.5%) Thiamin 4% (.5%) Riboflavin 4% (.5%) Niacin n/a (n/a) Folate n/a (n/a) Phosphorous 4% (.5%) Potassium 28% (3.5%) Zinc n/a (n/a) Magnesium 4% (.5%) Copper 20% (2.5%)

Interesting Facts
Quince require a cold spell to properly flower. Many ancient references to apples are suspected to actually be references to quinces.

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Recipe by Emilie Hardman of The Conscious Kitchen

Food from the Middle East

December 2009|201

Turkish Coffee and Urfa Biber Cakes
Type: Dessert Time to Prepare: Serves: 6 cakes in 3" Panettone baking cups or 1 8” cake

The Turkish Coffee 4 tbsp. very finely ground espresso 4 tsp. brown sugar 2 cardamom pods, black seeds finely ground ¼ tsp. ground green anise The Cakes ⅓ cup cold water

Ingredients

½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour 3 tbsp. semolina flour ½ tsp. baking powder ⅛ tsp. baking soda 1 tsp. urfa biber dried chili flakes ¼ tsp. ground green anise ¼ tsp. ground cardamom ½ cup unsweetened soymilk

1 tsp. apple cider vinegar ¼ cup cane sugar ¼ tsp. sea salt 2 tbsp. walnut oil (or any oil of your choice) 2 tbsp. brown sugar The Whipped Ganache 8 oz. dark chocolate (55-68%), chopped ¾ cup unsweetened dairy-free milk 2 tbsp. agave syrup Pinch of sea salt

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Instructions

To Make the Turkish Coffee top. Do not stir.

Pour ground coffee, sugar and spices in the bottom of the pot and pour cold water over

With a high flame, cook until the sugar melts, about three minutes. return the mixture to the flame and allow the liquid to rise again. Remove from heat just before boil.

When the coffee grounds collapse into the liquid and the liquid rises around it, immediately

Allow coffee to sit for about 1 minute before returning to heat and allowing it to rise. heat one final time to rise. Note that each rise will take progressively less time, so watch carefully. To Make the Cakes Allow coffee to cool.

When it rises again, remove and allow to sit once more for a minute before returning it to

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder and baking soda. Whisk in the ground spices and set aside. combine. The mixture should almost immediately thicken like a thin yogurt. Whisk in the cooled coffee, sugars, salt and oil, continuing to whisk until well combined. you pour. Whisk vigorously until batter is smooth and well combined. Divide the batter evenly among six panettone papers and bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. If making an 8” inch cake, oil the sides of the pan and line bottom with parchment. Bake for 30 minutes to until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely. With the whisk in one hand, pour the wet mixture into the dry, whisking to incorporate as In a small mixing bowl, combine the unsweetened soymilk and apple cider vinegar, whisking to

To Make the Whipped Ganache

Optional: Top with whipped ganache, chopped pistachios and a sprinkling of urfa.
In a microwave safe bowl or on the stove top in a double boiler, melt the chocolate. Chocolate is very delicate and can easily burn. Use a low heat if on the stove (and avoid any contact between chocolate and water) or heat in no more than 30 second increments in the microwave.

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Combine non-dairy milk, agave and salt. Gently heat the mixture until steaming, either on the stove top or in the microwave. until the mixture comes together in a cohesive, smooth and shiny way. At this point, it may be poured over the cakes or cooled and whipped in a stand mixer. Once whipped, the ganache is airy and light and pipes beautifully onto cakes. Pour the heated liquid mixture over the melted chocolate and briskly incorporate, stirring

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Complementary Food and Drinks
These are great with a cup of Turkish coffee or strong black tea.

Chef’s Notes
Drawing on the seductive, dark and delicately spicy flavors of Turkey, these cakes star thick, pleasantly bitter Turkish and urfa biber chilies. Urfa biber chilies are a striking burgundycolored pepper grown in the Urfa region of Turkey. They are sun dried during the day and wrapped up tight to "sweat" and there is definitely a sense of dried fruit, a highly concentrated sweetness with richness and depth to its flavor, married to a full-bodied warmth that makes the urfa really special. through the night. The result is often described as a spicy raisin

Interesting Facts
Urfa is a city in south eastern Turkey and was known as Edessa.

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Recipe by Emilie Hardman of The Conscious Kitchen

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December 2009|205

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