Fatouche Salad

We love to have salads for dinner during the summer. And this is one I grew up eating all the time. I don’t know if every Lebanese household pulls this off on Fridays in the summer, but my mom did…she would make Fatouche and French fries. It was the perfect way to enjoy a hot Friday night.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve made it more to my and John’s liking. We skip the mint, we add feta, we don’t use as much lemon and salt than my mom would like, and we use more cherry and whole tomatoes, peppers and cucumber than lettuce. Now that’s not to say that when my mom makes Fatouche I complain…I love it – it’s just different, and it’s my mom.

– 3 servings
1 head of romaine, chopped
Handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tomato, chopped
1 pepper, green or yellow, cubed
1 cucumber, halved, sliced
1/2 onion, sliced
1/4 teaspoon Sumac
Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 medium rounds of Pita bread
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Split the pita bread in half, and bake until golden brown. You need to keep an eye on this. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve burned the bread! Remove from the oven and set aside.

Toss together all the vegetables, and in separate bowl combine sumac, lemon juice, and olive oil. Whisk until well combined, pour over salad, taste and season with salt and pepper.

Break up pita bread over the salad to bite size pieces and top with feta. Toss together when you are ready to serve.

Don’t forget to wash your hands, and eat with your fingers. 🙂
Happy Cooking!


5th Anniversary Worthy & my 100th Post!

This June my husband and I celebrated our 5th anniversary! Since it fell on a Wednesday, we decided we would make a trip to the store, buy everything we needed, and cook together – we planned an actual night out for Friday.

We came up with a few ideas, then my husband mentioned the recently purchased Trotter’s book I had gotten. When we saw the Poached Salmon with Lobster Potatoes and Veal Stock Reduction, we thought it would be perfect with a bottle of champagne, and made a list. Of course we made our own variations. The poached fish itself was actually nothing to write home about, so we recommend searing yourself a delicious filet mignon and serving it with the potatoes and sauce, we are sure you will love it.

The steak is served with the most decadent mashed potatoes including lobster and creme fraiche. The Veal stock reduction is not something you can skip out on, but if your like me, and didn’t have the time to make your own stock – you can buy some, it does not compromise the taste.

Veal Stock Reduction – 1/2 cup
2 tablespoons shallot, chopped
2 tablespoons garlic, chopped
2 teaspoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup red wine
3 cups Veal stock
1 teaspoon dried tarragon

Sweat the shallots and garlic in a small saucepan with butter. Deglaze with red onion and reduce to a glaze. Add the veal stock and reduce by half. Add tarragon let simmer for 30 seconds, and strain.

Grilled Steak with Lobster Potatoes and Veal Stock Reduction
– serves 2
1 large Idaho potato, peeled
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons creme fraiche
2/3 cup cooked, chopped lobster meat
1 piece of fried bacon, crumbled
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 6oz filet mignon
1/2 cup Veal Stock Reduction

Boil the potato until soft, and pass through a ricer. While it’s hot, whisk 4 tablespoons butter, bit by bit into the potatoes. Then whisk in the creme fraiche and fold in the lobster and crumbled bacon. Keep the potatoes over a double boiler, while you grill your steak and warm up the reduction.

Season steak with salt and pepper, and grill to your preferred temperature.

To serve: Place a large dollop of potatoes in the center of both plates, to each mound with a steak, and drizzle the Veal Stock Reduction around the potatoes.

The photos are of the original dish we made, and if you would like the recipe for the poached salmon, just send me a message.

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Happy Cooking!

Garden Salad

No lettuce here friends, well unless you want to decorate the plate with romaine leaves. This is a delicious and healthy meal on its own, even my husband who was skeptical as I prepared it, had two servings!

It’s super simple, use what you have in the garden and add a can of chickpeas, or fresh ones if you are lucky to get your hands on some. I only used a few items, because we’re keeping our fridge empty – all our vegetables are turning color and we’ll need the space. So feel free to use, cucumber, zucchini, any sort of tomatoes, parsley, multiple pepper colors, and even grated beets!

Garden Salad – serves 2
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
Kosher salt
1 15-oz can of chickpeas, rinsed
1 scallion, sliced
1/4 pepper, any color, diced
1/2 tomato, diced
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

Whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, and season with salt.
Combine the remaining ingredients, mix well, and divide among plates.

If you have endive, you could serve this as a wonderful appetizer. Separate leaves, lay them on a plate, chop smaller inner leaves, add to salad. Mix well, and spoon chickpea salad into each leaf. No utensils necessary to enjoy!

Stay cool in the heat, and drink plenty of water!
Happy Cooking!