White Baladi Goat Cheese

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I have never held in my hands the udders of a four-legged mammal before. But it was during our stay in Hardine for the Blooming April events series that Bruno and I decided to go on a little adventure and decided one morning to go to the nearby goat herder and get ourselves some fresh goat milk and attempt to make cheese.

We woke up one Sunday morning and drove to where the goats are. Charbel, the goat herder, gave us the white plastic wide-mouthed gallons and advised us to put on latex gloves because the smell would be hard to get rid of. Charbel got a mother goat out and calmly it obliged and offered her udders for us. We approached and started squeezing to no avail. I was afraid of squeezing wrong or too much and end up hurting the goat. But after being told that I SHOULD squeeze harder, I had no option but to try. Continue reading

Pickled Stuffed Vine Leaves

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If you’re anything like me, it would be the joy of your days to be in the wilds surrounded by nature. One can’t think of being away from nature would create a sense of anxiety that is only cured by total immersion.
This is one of the little things that one finds out about himself gradually as days go by. One goes from despising the idea of camping out there in the wild exposed to wild animals and insects to despising the idea of being in the middle of the concrete jungle exposed to wild humans and insects.

Whatever you do in the mountains feels purposeful. Sometimes you go for a walk in the neighborhood and that feels rewarding, sometimes it’s watering the garden, other times it’s the time take to remove the weeds, or climb up and pick the produce and pluck out the good ones. It feels that whatever you do is rewarding in a sense. Nature is rewarding and with some more time and patience, those rewards get more valuable.

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Continue reading

Strawberry Granola Bowl of Sunshine

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It’s been raining here for two days now. That ain’t stopping me tho!

Yo Rain, Cash me ousside, how bow dat?

I went to kick this storm in the butt. I walked out in the mist, defying all the horrific thoughts that stormed in my head about some monster jumping out of the mist to attack me. I calmed myself whenever I walked into a set of tangling trees whose branches are having an endless orgy for years. I calmed myself away from the idea that a beast might be lingering and I’m disturbing its natural habitat, especially when I hear them beasts of owls and wolves and foxes and other wild animals calling for something so loudly at nights all over the valley. Fortunately, all I ever found is countless tiny frogs jumping right and left as I walk by. I guess I squished hundreds or thousand of them, those who weren’t fast enough to hop to safety. I don’t think I’l be trying cooked frog legs any time soon. Continue reading

Fool Mdammas – Broad Beans and Chickpeas

I seriously have a problem that I need to talk to you about.

I need to know if I’m alone in this.
If you feel the same as I do, please let me know and release me from my agony.

HERE IT IS
From the moment I open my eyes, sometimes even before I open them, I start thinking of what to have for breakfast. I get up and start making something to eat

Am I alone in this?

Probably this is why I have so many breakfast recipes on this blog.

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Wood-Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Freekeh and Lentils

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Remember when we were a republic with no president?

Not anymore. Orange is literally the new black. After more than two years with no president finally the Lebanese parties (most of them at least, the ones who got a share of the cake) have agreed to vote for a candidate. Two hours of labor in the parliament proved that we still have a wicked sense of humor despite all, and that keeping the child in you alive is super important even if you’re a member of the parliament. Nothing feels good like re-living classroom fights between the bullies in the back, the nerds in the front, the teacher on the platform by the blackboard, and the supervisor pretending to be monitoring that everything is going as planned. All on live TV

Politics aside, it is purely coincidental that I am posting an orange pumpkin on such a day. This recipe was supposed to go last week as part of Pumpkin Week with the EatTheLebaneseSeason squad, our initiative to give recipes on how to cook and use local seasonal produce. But here it is: a super flavorful salad that can sub for a main meal with all the goodness it is packed with.

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