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

Baharat Mixes

This is a list of the ingredients each spice mix contains. You must mix or grind them together and store in a cool dark place. A glass container is best and use as needed.

Arabic Baharat(Arabic spice mix):
2 tablespoons fresh ground black pepper
6-1/2 teaspoons paprika
4-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom

Turkish Baharat:
2 tablespoons fresh ground black pepper
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground mint
1 tablespoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
pinch of ground cinnamon

Levant Baharat:
1/4 cup black peppercorns
1/4 cup allspice berries

Syrian Baharat:
2 teaspoons allspice
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1-1/2 teaspoons cloves

Tunisian Baharat:
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon dried rose petals
1 teaspoon black pepper

Gulf aka Khaleeji Baharat:
1 tablespoon red pepper
1-1/2 teaspoon cumin
1-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1-1/2 teaspoon ground (dried/black lime or lemon)
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon kholengan

Chinese Five-Spice:
2 tablespoons ground star anise
2-1/2 teaspoons ground fennel seeds
1-1/2 teaspoon ground cassia
1/2 teaspoon ground Sichuan or black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

2/3 cup toasted white sesame seeds
1/3 cup toasted coriander seeds
2-1/2 tablespoons toasted ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon toasted black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup roasted and peeled pistachios
1/4 cup roasted and peeled hazelnuts

Sea Salt/Lime Dates

When I first saw this recipe, I was eager to try it but not sure, how it would go over. I then realized how a date is not truly a date until warmed. Warming softens the skin making it more of a mouth experiment. This sweet, salty and sour treat will get great reviews from your entire guest.

12 dates pitted
almonds (you can use whole but I use sliced)
sea salt
lime juice

1. slit sides of dates and stuff with almonds enough so you can still close the dates back up, then heat olive oil in pan, warm dates then just add on a plate, sprinkle with sea salt and lime juice. You can add toothpicks in each if you would like.

Yields: 4 servings

Chicken Kabsa


Kabsa is the main traditional dish of Saudi Arabia. While the ingredients may be long, this recipe is anything but hard. Each spice used in this recipe is a popular Middle Eastern spice so the combining spices make this dish about as authentic as you can get. If you’re in a rush you can substitute the spices for 1 tablespoon of Arabic Spice mix as well. I always cook chicken with the skin on as it gives your food a more natural chicken taste as well as fat. I personally do not eat it but I would suggest cooking with it on before you remove it. Every home has their own style, this is mine and I hope you enjoy.

And might I add this is the recipe that started it all and why I started my own cooking blog. My husband wanted kabsa which I had never made and all of the online versions were not right or difficult to follow. I wanted a site that had the food I like yet with easy to follow recipes.

1 whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces
1 cup of basmati rice
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 tomato, diced
2 green chili’s, stems removed and slit lengthwise
2 bay leaves
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, diced
6 green cardamom pods, whole
5 cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
2 black limes
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cardamom, ground
1 (8 ounce) can of tomato sauce
4 boiled eggs (optional)
Pine nuts and raisins (optional)

1. In a 4-quart stockpot on medium-high heat add onions, garlic and. Allow onions to turn golden. Add bay leaves, cardamom pods, cloves, cinnamon sticks, black limes, cumin, coriander, salt, pepper, ginger and ground cardamom. Blend well and allow to sauté for 30 seconds.

2. Add tomato sauce, tomato, chili’s and chicken bouillon. Mix well until sauce thickens, reduce heat to low-medium. Add chicken allow to sauté for a 1 minute. Rotate chicken so that it gets all of the flavors. Add water until chicken is completely covered. Bring to a full boil then reduce to low. Cook for 35 minutes covered.

5. After the chicken has cooked reserve broth for rice. In a 2-quart saucepan, add rice and enough sauce from the chicken just so that the rice is covered. Bring to a boil then immediately turn heat to low and cook covered for eight to ten minutes. Meanwhile, why the rice is cooking turn oven on high broil. Add chicken to a roasting pan and broil for five minutes or until golden.

8. Add cooked rice to a serving platter with chicken arranged on top. Garnish plate with hard-boiled eggs, pine nuts, and raisins.

Yields: 4 servings