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October 2010

radishes-tagine

Roasted pickled radishes — the dish no one will guess

When we were served these sour pink balls as part of a tray of roasted vegetables, no one could guess what they were. That color — like no vegetable we’d ever seen. Was it a very small, pale beet? Dyed baby potatoes? We had to ask the waiter. Maybe the …

zaatar-yogurt-dip

Herbed yogurt dip with chives and zaatar

This dip won over a self-proclaimed hater of zaatar (my husband) and another self-proclaimed hater of herbs (a good friend). Zaatar is quite popular in this part of the Middle East, and is frequently sold as a dry spice mix, which also includes sesame and sumac (and sometimes salt). But …

seared-eggplant1

Simple mezze salad: Eggplant dip with thyme and parsley

It doesn’t get much easier than this. You roast an eggplant, mix it with mayo, and season with chopped herbs. Then you eat it. This is pretty much a Middle Eastern babaganush with a Western twist. The mayonnaise makes it creamier than usual, and the thyme adds an unusual flavor …

lentil-salad-cafe-liz

Lentil salad with cranberries and thyme

I came to the market a little too late on a recent Friday. It was all of 4 P.M., but half the stands were closed. Discarded vegetables lined the path, as greengrocers dumped unwanted produce before the weekend. Piles of lettuce leaves that came to my waist. Boxes of mushy …

tahini-spread-cafe-liz

Simple mezze: Tahini with roasted pepper and herbs

I’m not sure I cracked the secret of the secret tahini, but my not-so-secret version is good nonetheless. A few days ago, we were at a vegetarian restaurant called Mezze for the first time. The restaurant isn’t new; how it is that it took us so long to visit a …