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Yemen (Yemen Recipes)

World Cuisine Recipes

   Yemen has 2 major regions: North and South Yemen, which used to be different states until the end of the 20th century. The traditions and the cultural habits are similar in the 2 regions of Yemen and the cuisine seems to be unique and general. Because it is mostly a rural country, the agriculture occupies the wide territories, filled with Wheat, coffee and the local qat. The most traditional dish is the salto, which is based on meat and served an end of dinner or lunch during a special day. The most important feature of the Yemeni cuisine is the fact that it is very spicy and the hot taste is the most frequent one. There is a wide range of such sauces and dressings, used to spice up the meat or the salads. Because cereals are grown in the country, Yemen people also make their own traditional bread, called the mellawach, which is served with a spicy hot sauce that contains many spices, called the zchug. Zchug is also put on grilled meat, besides the hilbeh, fenugreek or coriander paste. The Yemen cuisine includes Lebanese and Indian aliments and spices and also the Arabic general rules, Egyptian and Persian tastes, in a unique combination and authentic cuisine.
   The Yemen cooking doesnt require much preparations, as the cooking techniques are the same as the other Arabic and Indian cuisines and not too different than the Western ones. The methods applied when cooking are mostly: grilling, boiling, and frying (including oil). Grilling is applied to meats, like the Arabian style of kebabs, chopped or cubic meat pieces for salads and meat dishes as main courses. The grilled meats are flavored and spiced with the special spicy and hot sauces, which some are served cold, some warm. The roast meals are similar to the grilled ones, but meat or vegetables are not chopped or sliced, as they are roasted full. The boiling process is very common for all vegetables (Eggplant, tomatoes). Citrus fruits are eaten fresh and also, many of the vegetables. Another preparation for the Yemen cooking is peeling. Peeling is applied to almost all tomatoes, especially the ones included in sauces and to some of the fruits, so that they get soft and easier to prepare.
Yemenite Charoset
Servings: 24
1/2 cup almonds, slivered
1/2 cup apricots, dried
8 each figs, dried, quartered
2 teaspoons coriander, ground
2 teaspoons lime rind or lemon rind, finely grated
1 tablespoon honey
3 to 4 tablespoons sweet wine white
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
Cooking Instructions:
Process almonds and apricots coarsely in food processor. Transfer to small bowl. Process figs to fine consistancy. Stir into almond apricot mixture. Add coriander, rind, honey and enough white wine to bind ingredients. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Roll into balls, 1 inch in diameter, roll in the sesame seeds and place each in miniature paper cups, or shape into a pyramid and press sesame seeds into sides. Makes about 24 balls.
Yemenite Haroset
Servings: 8
1/2 pound dates, pitted
1/4 pound raisins, seedless
4 each figs, dried
1 1/2 cups sweet wine
1/4 pound walnuts
1/4 pound almonds
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon ginger, ground
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cardamom seeds
Cooking Instructions:
Place fruits in food processor or blender. Finely chop. Add 1/2 cup of the wine. Mix again, at low speed. Add remaining ingredients and mix at low speed until nearly smooth.
Yemenite Helbeh (Dipping Sauce)
2 tbl Fenugreek seeds
1/4 cup Zhug (see recipe "Yemenite zhug")
1/2 sm Lemon, juice of
1 Tomato
Cooking Instructions:
Let the fenugreek seeds soak in water for several hours or overnight. Pour off any remaining liquid, leaving a moist paste. Using a wooden spoon, whip in, little by little, up to 1/2 cup water into the paste. Then mix in the zhug, lemon juice (JN calls for 1 tablespoon, or to taste), and the tomato (JN says to grate it, I just mash it up). Adjust seasonings to taste. It should be very spicy. This can either be eaten plain with bread (I would use pita), or served with a meal like a chutney.

Yemenite Meat Loaf (Halabi Kebab)
2 1/2 lb Ground beef
3 tbl Flour
1 tbl Oil
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Pepper
1 tbl Zhoug
3 tbl Oil
1 cup Finely chopped onions
1 cup Sliced mushrooms
1 cup Chopped parsley
3 Eggs
2 sm Green chili peppers
1 cup Chopped parsley
1 cup Chopped fresh coriander
1 1/2 tbl Fresh minced garlic
1 tsp Pepper
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Ground cumin
2 tbl Olive oil
Cooking Instructions:
Combine ground beef with flour, 1 tbsp oil, salt, pepper and zhoug. Form the meat mixture into a 10-inch loaf. Make a well the entire length of the loaf. Heat 3 tbsp of oil in a skillet. Saute together the onions, mushrooms and parsley until the onions are golden. Place the mixture in the well of the loaf. Lightly beat the eggs and pour over the vegetables. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pat the sides of the loaf together to close up the well, and wrap in aluminum foil. Bake for 30 minutes. The loaf may be served either hot or cold. Zhoug is a source of pride among the Yemenite population. Made with the sharpest of chili peppers, it is eaten with classically oriental Jewish meals. More than just a condiment, it is a tradition. Yemenites believe that daily consumption of zhoug wards off disease and strengthens the heart. It can be an addition to salad, and a sauce for various kinds of meat, fish and poultry dishes. Zhoug: In a blender, puree enough chili peppers to measure 1 cup. Puree parsley and coriande together and blend well with the chili peppers. Add garlic, seasonings and olive oil. Again, blend well. Put the zhoug in a jar and keep it in the refrigerator. It will remain fresh for many months.

Yemenite Roast Chicken with Cumin
Servings: 4
3 1/2 lb Chicken
1/4 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Pepper
1 tsp Ground cumin
1/4 tsp Turmeric
1 tbl Vegetable oil or olive oil
Cooking Instructions:
Preheat oven to 400'. Trim off excess fat from chicken. Mix together, the salt, pepper, cumin, turmeric and oil. Rub chicken all over with mix- ture. Set chicken in a roasting pan and roast 1 to 1 hours, basting occasionally if desired. Pierce the4 thickest part of a leg with a skewer or sharp pa: knife. When the juices run clear, the chicken is ( Carve chicken and serve the pan juices separate- ly , if desired.
Yemenite String Bean Soup
Servings: 8
2 cup Chopped fresh string beans
1 cup Chopped onion
2 tsp Salt
8 cup Water
6 tbl Tomato puree (fresh or canned)
Cooking Instructions:
Wash the string beans well and remove the tough strings before chopping. Cook all ingredients together until the stream beans are tender. Serve over steamed white rice.
Zhug (Yemen Spice)
Servings: 1
2 sm Mild red peppers
2 Fresh red chilies, (2 to 3)
A handful of coriander leaves
1 1/2 tbl Ground coriander
6 Cloves garlic
Seeds from 6 green cardamoms
5 ml(1-2 tsp) lemon juice, (5 to 10)
Cooking Instructions:
Finely chop the red peppers and chilies, removing the seeds. Chop the coriander leaves. Blend or pound all the ingredients to a paste, and store in a jar in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Baked Guavas Stuffed with Mushrooms and Olives
Servings: 6
6 guavas
1 tbl oil
1 cup mushrooms, chopped
1 tbl onion, chopped
1/2 cup green olives, chopped
2 tbl parsley, chopped
4 tsp chopped fresh dill weed or 1 tsp dried dill
1/2 tsp salt and pepper
1 tbl sesame seeds
Cooking Instructions:
To prepare the guavas for stuffing, cut a thin slice from the top of the guava. With a melon ball scoop or small spoon, remove the seeds and set the guavas aside. Heat the oil in a skillet. Add mushrooms, onion, green olives, herbs, salt and pepper; saute until vegetables are soft. Remove the mixture from the flame; cool. Stuff the guavas, filling them to the top. Place stuffed guavas in a baking dish just large enough to hold them and sprinkle sesame seeds over the guava tops. Bake at 325 F. for 1 hour, or until the fruit is tender. Serve hot.
Artichokes Stuffed in the Yemenite Style
Servings: 6
10 oz artichokes, (6 medium)
1 lemon, halved
3 1/2 tbl lemon juice
1/4 cup vegetable stock or water
1 tbl olive oil
1 cup minced onion
1 clove garlic, minced
3 cup chopped zucchini
1 cup chopped tomato
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tbl chopped red bell pepper
1 tbl balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Cooking Instructions:
Wash artichokes by plunging them up and down in cold water. Cut off stem end of each artichoke; remove bottom leaves. Trim about 1/2 inch from the top of each artichoke; trim away about one-fourth of each leaf (tip). Rub the top of each artichoke and trimmed edges of leaves with cut lemon to prevent discoloration. Arrange the artichokes, stem ends down, in a large Dutch oven; cover with water, and add the lemon juice. Bring to a boil cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or until a leaf near the center of each artichoke pulls out easily. Drain and set aside. Combine vegetable stock and oil in a nonstick skillet; place over medium heat until hot. Add onion and garlic; saute 3 minutes. Add zucchini, tomato, parsley, and bell pepper; cook 13 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in salt and pepper. Scrape out the fuzzy thistle center (choke) from each artichoke with a spoon, and discard.
Melon Baal Canaf (Melons with Wings)
Servings: 6
3 sm Cantaloupes
1/3 cup Oil
3 cup Raw chicken or turkey meat chopped
1 tsp Salt
2 cup Green onions, chopped
1/3 cup Parsley, chopped
1/4 cup Fresh lemon juice
2 cup Cooked rice
Cooking Instructions:
Cut each melon in half; remove seeds. Scoop out pulp and reserve. Heat oil in a skillet and saute chicken or turkey. Add salt and continue to saute until poultry is cooked through, about 15 minutes. Blend in green onions, parsley and lemon juice; continue cooking until onions are soft. Remove from flame and cool. Add rice to cooled chicken mixture; stuff melon cavities. Chop up 1 cup of reserved melon pulp and place on top. Put stuffed melons into an ovenproof dish; bake at 350 F. for 20 minutes. Serve hot.
Shashlik with Vegetables
Servings: 4-6
2 lb Lamb, cut in 36 pieces
Salt, pepper and cumin
3 Onions, peeled
3 Tomatoes, unpeeled
Hot cooked rice
Cooking Instructions:
Season the lamb with salt, pepper and cumin. Cut the onions and tomatoes into quarters. Alternate the lamb with the vegetables on skewers; grill or broil for 5 minutes on each side. Serve with rice.
Yemen Fatah
Servings: 2
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large onion, halved lengthwise, sliced crosswise (1 heaping cup)
1 large garlic clove, minced
3/4 Ol lamb, lean, cut into thin 2 inch strips
1/2 cup beef broth
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon coriander
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1 salt if desired, to taste
1 black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
1 cup couscous, cooked according to package directions
2 tablespoons parsley leaves, minced fresh
Cooking Instructions:
In a medium skillet, heat the oil, and saute the onion and garlic until the onion is translucent. Add the lamb or beef, and saute the meat, stirring it often, just tobrown the strips on all sides. Stir in the broth, oregano, cumin, coriander, allspice, salt, and pepper, and cook the mixture a few minutes longer. Serve the meat mixture, sprinkled with parsley, over the hot couscous.

World Cuisine Recipes


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