Middle Eastern

Middle East Tabouleh Salad

August 23, 2016

Delicious Tabouleh Salad is an excellent way to use up summer tomatoes. Tabouleh is an Arab Middle Eastern vegetarian dish traditionally made with tomatoes, finely chopped parsley, mint, bulgur and onion, and seasoned with olive oil, lemon juice, and salt.


January 26, 2016

Harira is the traditional soup of Morocco and Algeria. Families eat this herb-rich, tomato based soup year round. I’m sure that my mother ate this soup when she lived in Morocco many years ago.

Middle Eastern Falafel Salad

October 16, 2015

It’s Friday and I’m in the mood for falafel AND I’m in the mood for a salad so let’s combine the two for a delicious Middle Eastern dinner. Oh, and the hummus dressing is pretty darned good too.

Spicy Falafel

April 28, 2015

I don’t recall the exact time that I first had falafel, but I do remember biting into something so delicious and crispy that I had never experienced before. These little gems are so addictive and are great served with hummus or tzatziki or a refreshing salad.

Chickpea Spread

July 22, 2014

Try this Greek spread with pita wedges and topped with feta and dill.




May 13, 2014



Did you know that couscous is not a grain, but a tiny Moroccan pasta made from semolina flour? Here is a basic couscous recipe and some delicious variations.


1 1/4 Cup Water

1/4 Cup Dark Seedless Raisins, Dried Currants, Dried Cranberries or Dried Cherries (Optional)

1 Tablespoon Butter

3/4 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1-Cup Couscous

In a 3-quart saucepan, combine water, raisins (if using), butter, and kosher salt. Heat to boil over a high heat. Stir in couscous. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with fork. Transfer to serving bowl. Makes about 3 cups or serves 4 as side dish.

Lime Couscous: Prepare as directed, but leave out raisins and add 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, and 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lime peel to water.

Moroccan Couscous: Prepare as directed, but add 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric, and 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin to water.

Dried Tomato & Green Onion Couscous: Prepare couscous ad directed, but leave out raisins. Add 1 sliced green onion and 5 chopped dried tomato halves to water.

Almond Couscous: Prepare couscous as directed but leave out raisins. Add a pinch of ground nutmeg and pinch of dried thyme to water. Stir 1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds into fluffed couscous. 

© Victoria Hart Glavin


Moroccan Red Lentil Soup

February 9, 2014

Lentil soup

Moroccan Red Lentil Soup

My mother lived for many years in Morocco and once told me that Moroccans eat this red lentil soup to ward off the chill of the desert night. Given the weather we’ve been experiencing I think that we all need a delicious soup to ward off the chill, warm our tummies and feel all warm & fuzzy toward our loved ones. You can make my Moroccan Red Lentil Soup one day in advance and keep in the refrigerator overnight. If you’re adding any garnish then add at the moment of serving. 


1/4 Cup Olive Oil

1 Minced Medium Carrot

1/3 Cup Chopped Parsley

1/2 Cup Chopped Cilantro

1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1 1/2 Teaspoons Freshly Ground Pepper

6 Minced Large Garlic Cloves

2 Tablespoons Minced French Ginger

1 Teaspoon Ground Turmeric

1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

1 1/4 Cup Dried Red Lentils

2 Teaspoons Sweet Hungarian Paprika

28 Ounces Canned Whole Tomatoes With Liquid (Puree)

8 Cups Vegetables Broth

Pour olive oil into a heavy 6-quart pot and place over a medium-high heat. Add onions, carrots, parsley, cilantro, and kosher salt. Sauté for 8 minutes until golden brown. Reduce heat to a medium-low. Stir in pepper garlic, ginger, turmeric, and cinnamon. Cook for 30 seconds. Add lentils, paprika, tomatoes, and broth. Turn heat to medium-high and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat back to medium-low. Cover with lid and cook for 50 minutes. Add a bit of water if the soup becomes too thick. Remove from heat and ladle into serving bowls. Garnish with a teaspoon of yogurt, chopped cilantro or leave plain. Serves 4

Tzatziki Sauce

July 26, 2013

Tzatziki SauceTzatziki Sauce

I love making Tzatziki Sauce because it’s so easy to make and homemade is so much better than store bought.  It seems like the store bought stuff is sugary which is horrible.  All you need is a food processor or a blender and a few ingredients.


1 Cup Plain Greek Yogurt

1 Garlic Clove

1/4 Cup Minced Red Onion

1/4 Cup Diced Cucumber

3 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/2 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper

Place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor.  Pulse for 30 seconds to 1 minute. You want to keep it just a bit chunky.  Pour the Tzatziki Sauce into a bowl, cover and place into the fridge for 2 to 4 hours.  Remove from the fridge when you are ready to use.  Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.  Makes about 2 cups.

Basic Hummus

January 12, 2013

Basic Hummus

I am just going to come out and say it: I really love hummus.  I have no problem with grabbing some pita bread and calling it dinner.  Sometimes I like to throw spiced lamb or chicken on beds of hummus and often I use hummus as a sandwich condiment. 


2 Cups Cooked Chickpeas

1/4 Cup Tahini

1/4 Cup Fresh Lemon Juice

3 Pureed Garlic Cloves

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/4 Cup Water or Chickpea Cooking Liquid

1/8 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

If you are cooking dried chickpeas then use 3/4 cup dried chickpeas.  If you are using canned then use 1 can of drained chickpeas.  Purée the chickpeas in a food processor or a blender.  Stir in the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, salt and cayenne pepper.  Mix until smooth.  Add either the water or chickpea cooking liquid and mix well.  Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator.  Makes 2 cups.


January 5, 2013


Za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice mixture of herbs, sesame seeds, sumac and salt.  It is a spice blend that dates back to the 13th century.  Za’atar is used many ways, but most frequently used as a table condiment.  Dip warm flatbread into some olive oil and then dip into the Za’atar.  Trust me it’s delicious.  Za’atar also makes a great dry rub for both meats and vegetables.  Sumac is a bit difficult to find.  Go to a specialty spice store like, Kalustyans, or order online from Amazon.


1/4 Cup Sumac

2 Tablespoons Thyme

2 Tablespoons Toasted Sesame Seeds

2 Tablespoons Marjoram

2 Tablespoons Oregano

1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt

In a dry sauté pan, toast the sesame seeds on a high heat for two minutes.  Remove from the heat and let cool.  In a small size bowl combine the sumac, thyme, toasted sesame seeds, marjoram, oregano and kosher salt.  Store in an airtight container for up to a week.  Makes approximately 1/2 cup.

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