I’m in Deirmimas, my beloved village, my beloved house. I have missed it and I will always do. Relaxing on the porch, on the couch, a book on my lap, the wind blowing through my hair. It’s a good, sweet wind, as my friend Diana said, it’s delicious. By sitting there, doing nothing, contemplating the trees, the house, I am amused, I never get bored; I’m surrounded by beautiful trees, flowers, birds picking flowers and cats playing around and the quietness of the village makes your mind wander.
I like when I first open my eyes, in the morning, look through the window, and see a beautiful, clear blue sky. I smile and say, today is a beautiful day. I hurry to get up out of the bed to go sit outside, eat some figs. In the evening, when the sun is down, I go pick figs, white figs from the garden. It is a relax-vacation, im enjoying my stay, the nature, the homemade lebanese food.
Today is a great day, may this day bring you joy and a fresh new beginning of sharing and exploring and I want to wish you all a Happy Easter.
In Lebanon we have a tradition that comes along during this miraculous holiday, baking holiday sweets, “Maamoul” a recipe I have posted a couple of years ago. The difference this year is that, I used to help mom preparing the maamoul, this time I did it myself, of course with the help of my husband in moulding and shaping the maamoul. And they turned out to be just amazing, delicious and easy to prepare. What about you, what did you bake this Easter?
As we were invited for lunch today, I prepared this strawberry tart, since I prefer, and like, the home-made desserts. The crust is more like a crostata with crème patissière. I loved it.
A very rich, flavourful and delicious dish, these marinated chicken breasts with cilantro and garlic are very easy to prepare. And they’re done in no time. The combination of cilantro and garlic is amazing. Cut two chicken breasts into cubes, add 4 crushed garlic cloves, half bunch cilantro, finely chopped, good olive oil, salt and pepper, chili pepper and a dash of lemon juice and throw in 2 small quarter of that lemon. Mix well to combine. As accompaniment, I added 2 sliced potatoes and a big handful of quartered cremini and white mushrooms. In a 350 heated oven, first bake the potato coated with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt for 10 minutes, stir so they won’t stick. Then add the marinated chicken and the mushrooms over the potatoes and bake for about 40 minutes, stirring few times until the potatoes are soft and the chicken well cooked. Enjoy.
I love this bean dish, it’s warm, soft plus I like the combination of cilantro and garlic. It is also a popular dish in the Lebanese cuisine. There are different kind of beans, for this dish we use the Romano Beans, also known as Borlotti Beans or Cranberry Beans; it’s streaked with red. This dish is eaten with pita bread. The recipe calls for:
- 1 cup of Romano Beans, soaked in water overnight
- 5 garlic cloves, crushed with a garlic presser
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- half bunch cilantro, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- salt and pepper
Get rid of the soaking water; put the beans in a large pan to boil, with enough water to cover the beans; When the beans are almost done, over a medium-heat, in another sauce-pan, drizzle the oil, add the garlic, stirring for a minute then add the cilantro and let them cook a bit, lowering the heat. Then add the tomato paste, and let them cook. Taste the beans, they should be soft, well cooked; reduce a cup of the water if it’s a lot then add the garlic-cilantro sauce, stir and let simmer like 15 minutes, season with salt and pepper. Serve the dish with spring onions, green bell pepper, radish, and pita bread. Enjoy.
Tabbouleh is a very popular dish in the middle east. It is considered one of the most healthy salads. It’s a part of the popular Lebanese Meze. And the word Tabbouleh is derived from the Arabic, meaning seasoning. It’s popular in Lebanon, Syria, Cyprus, and with some variations in the Armenian and Turkish cuisine.
It’s a very easy dish to prepare. The main ingredients are parsley and burghul. So the recipe goes with the mix of a big bunch of very fine chopped parsley, a handful of fine burghul wheat, soaked in water for 15 min, chopped onions, I added some green onions, chopped tomatoes in small cubes, a juice of a lemon or lime, good quality olive oil and salt and pepper. It is usually served with Romaine Lettuce; some persons would like to eat it with pita bread. Try this delicious dish and tell me what you think. Enjoy.
When you’re home on a Saturday evening, it’s cold outside, snowing and you feel warm and cosy to stay home, what would you do? I, personally think of cooking a meal or baking something sweet. The heated oven, the good smell that enrich the house. We had some blueberries, so I thought, instead of eating them plain, which is also very delicious, I try them in a baked sweet. I looked up the net and found that amazing recipe, courtesy of Martha Stewart’s website. The muffins turned out having the exact fluffiness and tenderness I wanted them to be. I adapted a little bit the recipe, which calls for a certain topping or just a sprinkle of sugar and mace; I opted for the sprinkle to which I added some cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg instead of the mace. And that sprinkle gave a certain crust to the muffin which was perfect, delicious and added a flavour to the blueberries. Try it out and tell me what you think. Enjoy with a cup of coffee or an infusion of fresh ginger, cinnamon stick and anise seeds.
I wish a happy holidays for everyone and hope this Christmas and 2014 bring peace of mind, joy and good health.
These pictures are from the Park Mont-Royal, our last day before moving to Toronto. This park is a great escape to relax, and enjoy the Nature, or even jog or walk the dog. I’m going to post another thing about the houses in Montreal, another beauty. I miss Montreal.