Mouthwatering 'molokheya' (green soup)
Recipe by Sherien Helal
This traditional soup is one of my favourite Egyptian Recipes. Its main ingredient is Molokheya otherwise known as Egyptian spinach. Your local Middle Eastern grocer should have this in stock when in season but the recipe also works with dried or preserved leaves. If you are unable to track it down you can use English spinach or chard as a substitute however you may not achieve the same rich flavour. A variant of this traditional recipe includes chicken, duck or rabbit meat.
4 cups chicken broth
3 bay leaves
1 onion, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
Salt and pepper
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons cumin seeds
1/2 cup olive oil
Equipment you will need:
Large skillet, medium high heat
1) Pour the broth into a soup pot and add the bay leaves, onion, tomato paste, salt and pepper and bring to a simmer.
2) Add the molokheya and season with salt and pepper. Stir well. Simmer for 20 minutes.
3) Pour the olive oil into a large skillet over a medium high heat. Stir in the garlic and cumin seed. Continue stirring or swirling the pan. When the garlic is golden brown, pour the hot oil over the surface of the simmering molokheya.
Serve with plain rice.
For more information on and inspiration to try molokheya take a look at this article from Food Safari’s Maeve O’Meara.
Molokhia (green soup) with chicken. Photo by Dan Q. Dao.
Recipe by Mahmoud Ramadan
Like most Egyptians, I love falafel! It is delicious, traditional and easy to make at home.
1x 400g tin of mixed beans
1x 400g tin of chickpeas
1 lemon, zest finely grated
1 tablespoon harissa
1 heaped teaspoon allspice
1 heaped tablespoon plain flour
1 bunch fresh coriander
Equipment you will need:
Food processor (bowl blade)
Large frying pan, medium heat
1) Drain the beans and chickpeas and put them into the processor. Finely grate in the lemon zest, then add a pinch of salt and pepper, the harissa, allspice, flour and coriander stalks (reserving the leaves). Blitz until smooth.
2) Scrape out the mixture. Quickly divide and shape into 8 patties approximately 1.5cm thick.
3) Put 1 tablespoon of olive oil into the frying pan and add the falafels, turning when golden and crisp.
Serve with pickles and a green or tahini salad, or enjoy with flatbread in a sandwich. Have a lovely falafel!
Delicious falafel. Photo by kosher.com.
Stay tuned for more delicious Egyptian recipes from our Bunnik team in Cairo.