Yogurt, Spinach, Parsley & Beet Salad (borani)

In this recipe both cooked spinach and fresh parsley and cilantro are mixed together. It is my adaptation of an Armenian dish.

In Israel you will most often find the vivid pink ‘borani’, made with beets and beet greens instead of spinach (see variation). 

 

beet-yogurt

As an alternative to the traditional pita bread, I prefer to spread it on toasted whole wheat or multi-grain bread, rubbed with a clove of garlic.

It can also be a side dish, accompanying poached or grilled fish or chicken.

 

Makes about 3 cups. (more…)

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Seville Orange or Lemon Marmalade

I have updated the more traditional English recipe I made for years.

Thinly slicing the raw fruit helps make the marmalade faster, and even more wonderfully fragrant. I start with this new version and then you will find the more traditional way. In both recipes I opt for less sugar as I love the tartness of citrus marmalade. If you prefer it sweeter you can increase the amount of sugar. 

 

1-Marmalade-Beginning-copy 

You can make the same marmalade using Mayo lemons, varying the amount of sugar you add, and also maybe cooking less time the lemon slices, as they are definitely more tender that the Seville oranges. 

I often add some julienned tangerine, orange, and/or kumquat peels together with the sliced lemon or Seville orange to make a mixed citrus marmalade.

 

 

Makes about a dozen  8-ounce jars (more…)

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Spicy Carrot Jam with Oranges, Apples, and Lemons

I have never tried to make carrot jam, as the ones I have tasted were sickly sweet, lacking any aroma or distinctive tang. But I was intrigued by the ‘Carrot Cake Marmalade,’ at Food & Wine. The recipe originated from “ Molly’s Rise and Shine in New Orleans, where diners rave about the yogurt bowl served topped with marmalade,” as the recipe’s intro states.

I liked the idea of adding warm spices, but increased the number of other fruits –oranges, apples, and particularly lemons—which beautifully complement the carrots’ one-dimensional sweetness. Also, I didn’t over-process the fruit to get a very smooth jam, as the recipe suggests.

My carrot jam is somewhat tart, much closer to my most favorite citrus-fruit marmalades. But you can add more honey or sugar to make it sweeter, as most people probably would prefer it…

 

 

Serve with creamy, thick yogurt, with fresh cheese –like myzithra or ricotta– or with the very creamy manouri cheese. I also like to spread it on slices of my Orange, Lemon or Tangerine Olive-oil Cake. 

 

 

 

 

At Molly’s Rise and Shine in New Orleans their very smooth carrot jam is served with granola and yogurt, topped with orange segments and blackberries.

PHOTO from the restaurant’s FaceBook page.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Makes about 2.2 quarts (liters) (more…)

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Olive Oil, Whole-wheat, Yeasted Pastry

A versatile, quite easy olive oil pastry with yeast that makes a lovely crust for savory as well as sweet tarts. See note to see how you can store the rolled dough in the freezer, which gives you the possibility to double the recipe, so that you have a pastry shell to use whenever you feel like whipping up a pie.

It is adapted from Martha Rose Shulman’s recipe, as published in the NY Times Cooking.

 

 

 

Makes Two 10-inch tart shells

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Oxymel: Mint and Honey Shrub (Vinegar Syrup)

         This sweet, tangy, and aromatic drink was thought to be not merely refreshing but also restorative and healthful! Long before shrubs became fashionable again, they used to be Ancient Greeks’ favorite refreshments, called oxymeli (vinegar-honey syrup).

 

From my 1994, out of print book Mediterranean Pantry, with photos by the brilliant Martin Brigdale

 

Sugar has replaced honey in most old recipes and people continue to enjoy similar drinks today, especially in the Muslim countries of the Eastern Mediterranean, where alcoholic beverages are prohibited.  

In an old Turkish cookbook compiled by Turabi Efendi in 1862, I found a vinegar-sugar syrup called oxymel that was scented with sweet marjoram. Starting from that basic recipe I experimented with different quantities of sugar and vinegar, using marjoram, mint, and rose geranium as flavorings.

My favorite was this mint-flavored oxymel, but you can try other herbs you like. I use sugar, but you may well substitute honey, choosing a somewhat plain, not too fragrant honey.

TO SERVE place 2-3 tablespoons oxymel in a glass, pour in very cold water and ice cubes, and decorate with a sprig of fresh mint.

 

Makes 1 cup (more…)

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