Pinenut Stuffed Meatballs

1 onion, diced finely
1-1/2 pounds ground beef
salt and pepper, to taste
1-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
2/3 cup pine nuts
vegetable oil
2 pounds tomatoes, diced
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons garlic, chopped

1. In a medium sized bowl, add beef, onion, salt, pepper, cinnamon and allspice. Work mixture into a paste with your hands. Roll into walnut sized balls. Make a hole in each ball and stuff with pine nuts.

2. Put some oil on a plate and roll meatballs in it. Place on a baking dish baking on 400 F for 15-20 minutes.

3. For sauce add tomatoes to a food processor and liquefy. Add salt, pepper, sugar and garlic. Pour over meatballs and bake for another 35 minutes OR just serve sauce on side for guest to add their on as I did in the above picture.

Adapted from Arabsque

Mexican Taco Bake

1 pound lean ground beef
4 large soft taco shells
1 package Taco seasoning
1 cup melted Velveeta cheese

tomatoes, diced
scallions, diced
shredded cheese
sour Cream

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. In a 9 inch skillet brown ground beef until no longer pink. Follow directions on taco seasoning package and add taco seasoning and 1/2 cup of melted Velveeta.

2. In a 9-inch round cake pan, put in one soft taco shell. Spread 1/4 of the beef mixture evenly over taco shell. Place on next taco shell, adding 1/4 of the beef mixture on shell. Repeat until shells and beef mixture is gone. Add remaining melted cheese to top of final meat mixture layer. Put in oven until heated through, about 10 to 15 minutes.

3. Add toppings.

Zucchini lasagna

This lasagna is my all time favorite. I have always loved lasagna anyway (well ok only my Mother’s) but when I came across this recipe when I was searching for new recipes to try in Ramadan. I was not even sure how this would turn out but upon my husband and myself tasting this all I can say is we were blown away by the many flavors. This is lasagna is even better then the one my Mother always made. The fun thing about this dish is that you can add any of your favorite vegetables in it not only zucchinis. I have made it with portabellas and eggplants. I have even added all three. Also, when making this I always make two and just freeze the other one for those days when I do not have the time to cook. However, when I am in the process of baking the frozen one I do cook for an hour but half way in between I make a mixture of butter, garlic, and Italian seasoning. I then pour this all over the top of the lasagna. This gives it a nice refreshing taste and I promise no one will ever even know you were not slaving in the kitchen all day.

1 lb (16 oz) package of non cook lasagna noodles
1 pound (16 oz) ground beef, turkey, or lamb
1 onion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of Italian seasoning
4 cups ricotta cheese
1 cup grated Romano cheese
1 (16 oz) jar of pasta sauce (your choice)
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
2 medium zucchinis, sliced

1.In a 9 inch skillet, brown the ground meat over medium heat. Add onion, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Cook, drain, and set aside.
2.In a large bowl, mix together ricotta cheese, Romano cheese, sauce and the seasoned ground meat. Mix until well blended.
3.Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
4.Add a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Add a layer of noodles lengthwise and a few noodles in the opposite direction. Pour in a generous layer of ricotta mixture on top of noodles. Add another layer of noodles lengthwise. Spread on 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese. Line up the zucchini slices on top of the mozzarella cheese. Add another thin layer of ricotta cheese. Add the last layer of noodles lengthwise. Top the noodles with the remaining sauce, add the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.
5.Bake in a preheated oven for one hour. If Mozzarella cheese becomes too browned, loosely cover with a piece of foil.

Yields: 8 servings

Patates Musakka

I can not believe this is the first dish that I ever was taught how to cook several years ago. That is how easy it is. I used to make it all the time because it was all that I could cook. Not only is it easy but no one will know how easy it was, that is how good it taste. And its all in one pot, can it get any better?
6 medium potatoes, peeled and sliced 3/4 inches thick
1 lb (16 oz) ground beef
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
4 tablespoo
2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon pepper
salt to taste
1 teaspoon parsley

1. In a saute pan on medium heat place the potatoes. Add in order, ground beef, onion, garlic, tomato, butter, olive oil, water, salt, pepper and parsley. Cook for 20 minutes on medium-low heat, adding water if needed.

Yields: 6 servings