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Loubia – Lebanese Green Bean Stew

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

One of my favorite traditional Lebanese stews is Loubia. Its very healthy, very simple and easy to make. When you make it once you will want it again! You can use frozen green beans, and to be honest, that saves aLOT of time getting the beans ready. I love anything fresh so I usually get the beans ready the night before while watching TV.

I like to use 1lb of beans. Will feed 4, I just love leftovers 🙂

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

Just pinch off the stalk side of the bean Then snap them in half.

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

I love to prepare this in the pressure cooker, because it cooks in 15 min!

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

Sautee 1 medium onion.

Add 1/4 teaspoon Cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon 7 spice blend, 1/4 teaspoon sage, 1/4 teaspoon thyme. Salt.

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

Add 1lb cubed meat.

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

After browning the meat, add the green beans then add 1 can Diced Tomatoes (add the whole thing w the liquid). Alot of people add tomato sauce or paste, I never use the stuff. I always use these diced tomatoes. Keeps everything light and refreshing. Just close the lid on the pressure cooker. Set it to high for 2 min. Once the pressure builds up, put it on low and cook for 15 min only!

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

While the beans are cooking. I add oil to a pot, brown some vermicelli, and add rice and water.

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

The meat is melt in your mouth no matter what cut it is because of the pressure cooker. The natural juices of the beans come out and soak up in the rice beautifully.

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

At home we always dine family style.

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

Loubia - Green Bean Stew

I love to eat this with pita bread. Mop up the juices. Wrap my mouth around the juicy chunks of meat. This also makes a very healthy dinner. Your kids will love it. I did as a kid, and I still am addicted to it 🙂

Basturma – Lebanese Armenian Pastrami

BEWARE : beef heavy post ahead

Basturma

Basturma is one of those things that has a lot of memories for me. Piling up in the car, heading to the Armenian side of town, into the deli. The wafting smell of spices. Hot fresh crunchy French bread, tangy garlic sauce, crisp pickled Persian cucumbers, and lots of thinly sliced spicy salty Basturma.

Ok, so its not technically pastrami, but it is related. It is originally a Turkish dish, and was adapted by many including Albanians, Arabs, Greeks, Armenians and Lebanese.
Basturma

Bastourma, or Pastirma, is simply a cut of meat that is dried and cured with a mix of spices. The process is not as simple and has many steps. I don’t know the exact recipe, but it starts out with salt curing it for days to pull out all the moisture. Letting it dry, by putting weights on it. Then, cover it in a paste of crushed cumin, fenugreek, garlic, and hot paprika, followed by thorough air-drying. The paprika should be spicy. This whole process does not take less than 3 weeks.
Basturma
Basturma
Basturma

I have never made it myself . It is available at a local meat market, and it’s sold for around $9.00 a pound. I buy 1/2 a lb and ask the butcher to slice it real thin. I don’t dare buy more because it really doesnt last around me, lol. I start munching on the thin translucent buttery slices the minute I’m in my car. The soft beef, with fat ribbons has a salty addicting taste that is just punched up with the spicy thick paste on the outside.

When it does make it home, its great with eggs in the morning, or just simply on a pita with some mayo. Just don’t blame me if you get addicted.

Meatloaf Cupcakes

hey peeps! i was brainstorming the other day and i thought meatloaf cupcakes, how awesome would that be? Now, i have never had or made meatloaf in my life, and neither has my hubby so i thought what the hell, why not? so i googled “meatloaf recipe” and got one off of http://www.momswhothink.com/ . I modified it a little, but the basics are there, and let me tell u we loved it!

here is their recipe:

1/2 cup bread crumbs (i added a lil more)
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 cup milk
1 large egg
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard (i substituted with celery seed)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground sage (i also added 1/4 teaspoon thyme)
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder (didn’t have this)
1/2 cup barbecue sauce ( I had run out so i used Ketchup, hot sauce, honey and A1 for the sauce)
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce ( didnt have so i used A1 steak sauce instead)

Meatloaf Cupcakes

added the A1
Meatloaf Cupcakes

onions
Meatloaf Cupcakes

herbs n seasonings
Meatloaf Cupcakes

i added this pik cuz i LOVE how u can see each salt particle …im silly i know
Meatloaf Cupcakes

breadcrumbs which i made by toasting toast in the oven for 10 min
Meatloaf Cupcakes

1 egg
Meatloaf Cupcakes

milk
Meatloaf Cupcakes

So, i added a big spoonful for each cupcake whole, but what i would do differently is add probably at least 1/2 more, because they shrank a little when cooked.
You can also add cupcake liners, which i shouldve tried but my brain wasnt working.

Meatloaf Cupcakes

Meatloaf Cupcakes

Meatloaf Cupcakes

make sure to make a cupcake “dome” to look like a cupcake since meatloaf doesnt rise
i used the bottom of the spoon to shape them
Meatloaf Cupcakes

and voila! I only had a 1lb ground beef so i was short.
Meatloaf Cupcakes

SO, i didnt put the sauce on them right away. Pop them in the oven at 350 for 30 min
this is what they look like, before saucing them and popping them back in
Meatloaf Cupcakes

So, the sauce i made is 2/3 ketchup, 1/3 A1 steak sauce, 1 tablespoon honey, and 1/4 teaspoon hotsauce
Meatloaf Cupcakes

spoon it on then pop back into the oven for the last 20-30 min
Meatloaf Cupcakes

yummmmy
Meatloaf Cupcakes

For the frosting, i wanted to use a boxed mashed potatoe. I usually hate potatoes from a box, but these are not too bad, and i wanted it to be really smooth, and i was being lazy and didnt want to bother with peeling potatoes:)

Meatloaf Cupcakes

After it cooled a bit, i popped the mash into a ziplock and went to town
Meatloaf Cupcakes

And here u go!
Meatloaf Cupcakes

imaginging i was in a 5 star restaurant i dotted the plate with hot sauce.hehe.
Meatloaf Cupcakes

I would really recommend trying this. It’s really fun, and i would imagine it would be a hit with kids. Also, use more meat per cupcake then i did, and try it with a cupcake liner (*hit myself in the ass for not doing this)

xoxo

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