written by QUDUS ABUSALEH

by HAZEL VENZON

featuring                                            
        
SAWA THEATRE

 

Mulukhiya on Rice

 

INGREDIENTS

Mulukhiya:

• 4 cloves of garlic, minced

• 2 spicy chili pepper sliced in half if you want it

more spicy or want it less spicy just put it in whole

• 1 tbl cumin*

• 2 tsp salt*

• 1 tsp black pepper* *let’s call that your spice mix

• 1 lemon

• 1 bag Mulukhiyah (minced, defrosted)

• 1 c. Boiling water

• 1 tomato, sliced crosswise, 1/2 inch thick.

Chicken Brine:

• 2 chicken Breasts

• 4c. Cold Water

• 3 tbl Salt

• 1 tbl White Vinegar

Rice:

• 1 cup rice

• 2 tsp Olive Oil

• 1/2 tsp salt

• Pinch of turmeric

• 2 cups of boiling water

YOU'LL NEED

• 1 Small pot for Rice

• 1 Med pot for Mulukhiya

• 1 Large bowl for Chicken brine.

STEPS

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1: Cooking Rice

Heat up a small pot on medium-high heat.To the pot, add the olive oil, add salt and dash of turmeric. Then, stir in the rice. Let the rice sizzle and fry up for 2 minutes. Make sure turmeric is coating the rice, but don’t let it stick to the bottom. Then add 2 cups of hot water.  Once you see that rice is boiling, cover it and simmer on low for 20 mins. Once cooked, fork with a knife and set it aside, keep covered.

2: Brining the Chicken

Before you proceed, heat up Med sized Pot to Med heat. Take the chicken breasts. Slice the Chicken, 1 inch thick (crosswise).  In a bowl, combine vinegar with the 4 cups of cold water and add the salt. Steep the chicken into the brine, massage the chicken and set it aside.

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1: Cooking Rice

Heat up a small pot on medium-high heat.To the pot, add the olive oil, add salt and dash of turmeric. Then, stir in the rice. Let the rice sizzle and fry up for 2 minutes. Make sure turmeric is coating the rice, but don’t let it stick to the bottom. Then add 2 cups of hot water.  Once you see that rice is boiling, cover it and simmer on low for 20 mins. Once cooked, fork with a knife and set it aside, keep covered.

4. Plate your dish

With a small bowl or a 1c measuring cup, lightly pack your rice into it and flip it over on to a plate. Do the same to another plate. Divide the Molokhia between the two plates, topping it with cracked pepper.

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Vegetable Dolma

 

INGREDIENTS

Dolma Filling:

• 1 cup of White Rice

 

• 1 hot pepper

 

• 1 tsp of Jamaican curry powder*

 

• 1 tsp of paprika*

 

• ½ tsp of sumac*

 

• ¼ tsp of Caribbean spice* *spice mix

 

• ½ bunch of dill

 

• ½ bunch of parsley

 

• 2 Tbsp. of salt

 

• ¼ cup of canola oil

 

• ½ cup of tomato paste

Vegetables:

• 2 Mini Eggplants '

 

• 25 grape leaves

 

• 2 lemons

 

• 1 white onion

 

• 1 Yukon gold potato

YOU'LL NEED

• 1 medium sized pot 

 

• 1 small plate that fits into the pot (heatsafe)

 

• 1 large serving plate

 

• 1 cutting board

 

• 1 non-stick frying pan

 

• 1 potato peeling knife / paring knife

 

• 1 knife

 

• 1 large mixing bowl for the rice,

 

• 1 med bowl for water and tomato paste,

 

• 1 med bowl for your onion

 

• 1 kettle, filled to the max

STEPS

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1: Prepare the Stuffing

Wash rice with water until it runs clear. Add our salt to the rice and let sit on the side for now. Now, peel and cut an onion LENGTHWISE, set half aside and chop up the other ½ super fine. Chop up your chili, and set it aside. Take your dill,and parsley (no stems), chop it up super fine. *You do it at the same time.* To a pre-heated pan on medium high heat, add oil, finely chopped onion and  chili pepper to the pan and let it fry for roughly 2 mins or until the onion is slightly transparent. Add ¾ of the tomato paste, dry spice mix - fry until combined. Next add the fresh herbs, let it cook for another 2 mins. Combine the tomato mixture to the rice and fold until evenly coated. Juice both lemons and add it to the rice mixture. Set aside.

2: Prepare the Vegetables

** Turn your kettle on Slice the potato into ¼ inch rounds, set them aside. Hollow out the eggplant by cutting off the tops, and with a paring knife, carefully carve away the seeds, leaving a hollow cup. Season the inside with a pinch of salt. Once water has boiled, submerge separated onion layers into a bowl of hot water, leave it to soften.

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3: Stuffing and Layering

In your med-sized pot, cover the bottom with water and remaining oil. Use 3 grape leaves and lay them on the bottom of the pot. Lay potatoes on top of the leaves, season with salt and pepper. Fill the hollowed eggplant ¾ full of the rice mixture, set aside. Wrap each grape leaf using 1 tablespoon of rice mix. Place rice near the wide edge of the leaf. Fold one side in, covering the rice, and then repeat on the other side. Holding both flaps down, tuck the rice in place and roll the rice into a 2.5” x 1” log. Repeat until finished. Add one layer of dolmas on top of the potato. The rest was set aside. Once all dolmas have been made, carefully take your onion layers and stuff them with 1 tbl of rice, pierce them closed with a toothpick. Layer them on top of the existing layer of dolma. Place the stuffed eggplant in an open space. Top the last layer with the remaining dolma.

4. Cook the Dolma

** Heat the dolma pot to medium-high heat. Combine remaining tomato paste with 3 cups of warm water from the onion bath or kettle, until dissolved. Add this liquid to the dolma pot. Using the plate that fits inside the pot, rest it on top, and press to compact the layers. Cover and let it cook for 20 mins. After 20 mins, remove the plate from inside the pot. Lower to medium-low heat, keep cooking it, covered for another 15 mins.

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5. Plate your Dish

Remove as much gravy from the pot and set it aside. With your serving plate, place it on top of the pot. Holding both the plate and the pot of dolma, pressed together, in one swift motion, flip the dolma pot upside down. DO NOT LIFT the pot from the plate. The plate should now be rightside up, the pot now inverted, upside down on the plate. The dolma should be inside the pot. Tap the bottom of the pot, and slowly lift the pot to reveal your layers of cooked dolma. Divide the dish between two plates and smother the dolma with gravy.

Kunafah

 

INGREDIENTS

Syrup:

• 1 cup granulated sugar.

• 0.5 cup water.

• 1 small spoon lime juice.

Tea: (Kunafah’s side-kick!)

• 2 CINNAMON STICKS

 

• 3 pods of cardamom

 

• 1 TEA BAGS (black tea)

Kunafah:

• 0.5 lbs pound knafeh shredded dough

 

• 1 cup ghee

 

• 0.5 lb Akaawi cheese

 

• 50 g crushed pistachios

YOU'LL NEED

• 9” round pan, or square

 

• Serving plate

 

• Small pot

 

• Stove top tea-pot, or small pot

 

• Cheese grater

 

• Strainer

 

• Large Mixing bowl

 

• Cutting Board

 

• Kitchen knife

 

• Paper Towel

STEPS

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1: Wash Akaawi Cheese

Grate the whole block into a bowl. Fill the bowl with warm water and let it stand. Rinse after 5 mins. Repeat this process four times over the course of the preparation. After the final rinse, dry the cheese with paper towel, pressing firmly to release excess moisture.

2: Make Syrup

In a small pot over medium-high heat add sugar, water, stir to combine. Once it’s boiled then add the lemon juice. Turn heat down to low and let it simmer for 10 minutes. Let it come to room temperature.

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3: Shred Kunafah Dough

Divide the dough into half. Split the halves into halves. Taking one section, slice crosswise, creating small pieces. Repeat until everything has been finely shredded. Place it into a big mixing bowl.

4.  Assemble all the Ingredients
 

Warm the Ghee for 30 seconds in the microwave. Add ¾ of the to the Kunafah shreds. Massage fully. Brush the bottom of the pan with remaining ghee. Spread over half of the dough, evenly, across the bottom of the pan. Press down on the dough, creating a compact layer. Add the cheese to the dough, leaving a ½ inch space from the rim of the pan. Top with the remaining dough, press down to keep the dough compact.

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5. Make Tea
 

Bring 2 cups of water to boil. Add cinnamon sticks and cardamom pods. Boil on medium heat for 5 mins, then add the tea bag. Turn off heat, let the bag steep for 5 mins. Remove the tea bag.

6. Plate your Dish
 

With your serving plate, place it on top of the Kunafah pan.  Holding both the plate and the pan pressed together, in one swift motion, flip the Kunafah upside down. DO NOT LIFT the pan 

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