Egyptian Dinner Party

I have had the good fortune of being surrounded by amazing people since I arrived in Boston.  I had some friends over last night for an Egyptian dinner party.  The food was not authentically Egyptian, but it was delicious.  We had Megadarra with Spiced Tahini Sauce;  Carrot, Mint and Pomegrante Salad with an Orange Cumin Vinaigrette;  Raisin Coriander Bread; and Almond Stuffed Dates with Roses.  I hope this is the first of many more dinner parties to come. -Amanda

Megadarra with Spiced Tahini Sauce

Serves 12-15

For the megadarra:

2 cups puy lentils

8 cups water

1 teaspoon salt

3 cups brown jasmine rice

6 cups water

1 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons olive oil

6 large onions, sliced

1 teaspoon salt

black pepper

For the spiced tahini sauce

1/2 cup tahini

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 teaspoons dried mint

1 clove garlic

1 teaspoon lemon zest

pinch of salt

Directions

1.  For the megadarra:  In a pot, simmer lentils in 8 cups water with 1 teaspoon salt for about 20 minutes.  Drain and set aside.  In another pot, simmer rice in 6 cups water with 1 teaspoon salt for about 35-40 minutes.  Fluff with a fork.  In a skillet, sautee onions in the oil until soft.  Add salt and pepper.  Continue cooking until they reach a deep, golden color- around 15-20 minutes.  Combine rice, lentils and onions in one pot.  The longer it sits, the better!

2.  For the spiced tahini sauce:  Combine all ingredients until smooth.  Pour over the megadarra.

Carrot, Mint and Pomegranate Salad

Serves 10

1 lb. carrots

1/3 cup fresh mint, chopped

1 pomegranate, arils removed

1/2 orange, juiced

pinch cumin

pinch salt

1/2 tablespoon olive oil

Directions

1.  Shave or grate carrots.

2.  Toss with mint and pomegranate seeds.

3.  Add remaining ingredients and toss until combined.

Raisin Coriander Bread

Yields 1 loaf

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 cup raisins

1/2 tablespoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon dry active yeast

1 1/2 cups water

Directions

1.  Combine all ingredients thoroughly.  Let rest 12-20 hours.

2.  Pour the dough onto a floured surface.  Pat out flat, and fold it in on itself toward the center, as though you were creating a purse.

3.  Let rest, seam side down for 1 hour.

4.  Meanwhile, preheat a dutch oven in a 450 degree Fahrenheit oven.

5.  Place dough in the dutch oven seam side up.  Cover the dutch oven, and bake for 30 minutes.

6.  Remove lid, and bake additional 15 minutes, or until dark golden crust is reached.

7.  Let cool before slicing.

Stuffed Dates with Almonds and Roses

10 medjool dates, sliced

1/4 cup almond butter

20 raw almonds

pinch of cinnamon

pinch of sea salt

1 teaspoon honey, or other sweetner

1 tablespoon dried rose petals

Directions

1.  Fill the center of each date with about a teaspoon of almond butter.  I find it easiest to use a spoon.

2.  Sprinkle over cinnamon and sea salt

3.  Top each date with one raw almond.

4.  Drizzle with honey.

5.  Scatter the rose petals over the dates.  Et voila!

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2 responses to “Egyptian Dinner Party

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