Pink lentil kibbeh – Style of Beirut

July 26, 2022  •  Class: , , , , ,

This can be a good dish for warm Summer time days!  Served at room temperature, vegan and lighter on the abdomen than heavy stews or purple meat kebabs.  In Lebanon, it’s standard within the South, the place locals use plenty of aromatic wild edible herbs to spice their kibbeh (known as kammouneh). I believe it’s a dish initially from Turkey and particularly Anatolia, and it’s a Kurdish chef, Asma, who initially  introduced it to me, telling me it’s from her hometown of Mardin. I’ve additionally had it at Armenian eating places in Beirut, as additionally it is a part of the Armenian traditional delicacies.

Her version although yummy, is a tad too rustic (a bit bland) for my style, so I’ve developed my very own utilizing Mexican chilies which are extensively accessible and used right here in Texas (Texas was part of Mexico till 1836). If you happen to wouldn’t have entry to those dried Mexican chilies, you possibly can substitute some jarred purple enchilada sauce or a mole, and physician it up with some contemporary native peppers or tomatoes.  I’ve been on a kick upon my return to Texas to taste my Lebanese meals with Mexican flavors, and it has labored rather well up to now.

Making your individual chili sauce is really easy, and it retains rather well within the fridge (about 10 days, extra whether it is in a sterilized jar); the sauce can be utilized as a condiment, (identical to ketchup), besides it’s infinitely higher, with a richer, extra complicated style (relying on the chilies used).

The purple lentils cook dinner in water in about 10 minutes, then the bulgur is sprinkled on prime and the grains will swell up in a few minutes. Then, a stir-fry of onion and spices is added to provide this dish a kick of taste. If the bulgur and lentil pilaf is simply too dry, add extra water or sauce. Whether it is too moist, add extra bulgur.

I went all-out this time, including tomato and purple pepper paste, my very own chili sauce, parsley and basil, onions fried, garlic paste, cumin, a touch of saffron, a contact of date molasses (or piloncillo) for a bit of sweetness, olive and lemon juice, tasting and adjusting alongside the best way.

In Lebanon, (and in Anatolia too, I’m assuming), this dish is served with a glass of ayran.

 The lentil and bulgur kind the canvas to construct your individual private kibbeh: Go for it. 


Pink lentil kibbeh

Joumana Accad
Mediterranean, Center Jap
July 26, 2022

Legumes, Mexican fusion, Complete Grain/Bulgur/Rice, Major Dish, Mezze/Appetizers, Vegan,

vegan, mezze, kibbeh, legumes and beans, Turkish, armenianfood, lebanesefood, appetizers, lentils, mexican, mediterranean meals, kurdishfood, chilies, mexicanfusion,

60 kibbeh servings

Prep Time: half-hour

Cook dinner Time: 25 minutes

Passive Time: quarter-hour


2 cups purple lentils

2 cups fantastic bulgur #1

5 cups water

1 giant onion, chopped

1 Tbsp garlic paste

1 cup salsa (made utilizing ancho, guajillo and California dried chilies)

2 Tbsp purple pepper paste

1/4 cup tomato paste

1/4 cup olive oil (extra as wanted)

2 Tbsp vinegar or lemon juice

1 cup chopped parsley

1/2 cup chopped basil (can use different herbs, like mint)

3/4 cup chopped inexperienced onions

2 Tbsp date syrup or molasses or piloncillo syrup

salt, black pepper, to style

2 tsp cumin (floor)




  1. Place the lentils in a sieve and rinse briefly just a few seconds below working water. Switch to a big pot and canopy with water (about 5 cups). Convey to a boil and decrease the warmth to medium for about 8 to 10 minutes or till the lentils have softened. Take away from the warmth, and sprinkle the bulgur over the lentils. Cowl the pot and let it sit for about 10 minutes (or longer). The bulgur ought to soften however can use a bit extra moisture at this stage.
  2. Within the meantime, fry the onion in olive oil in a big skillet over medium warmth. Stir-fry for about quarter-hour or till the onion has softened and is golden in colour. Add the garlic paste, cumin, tomato paste, purple pepper paste, chili sauce, saffron (optionally available).
  3. Simmer the combination gently for about quarter-hour, watching to verify it doesn’t cut back an excessive amount of. You need to have sufficient to cook dinner the bulgur a bit extra and imbibe the pilaf later. When the combination is prepared, switch it to the lentil and bulgur bowl and blend it completely.
  4. Add the contemporary herbs and inexperienced onions, combine effectively. Add a little bit of olive oil and lemon or lime juice, if wanted. Combine some extra.
  5. Form into balls or ovals, and plate on lettuce leaves if desired or some grape or fig leaves. Serve with further lime or lemon slices, and a contemporary salsa of diced tomatoes, onions, and parsley or cilantro doused in lemon or lime juice.




Recipe Notes

To make the chili sauce:

Choose just a few dried chilies (I used 3 anchos and 5 guajillos), half an onion, a pair garlic cloves, and toast in a skillet briefly over medium warmth till the smokiness wafts by the air, about 5 minutes.

Cowl with water and convey to a boil. Boil a couple of minutes then flip off the warmth. Allow them to soak for a few hours or in a single day.

Then, switch them to a blender and puree them; switch to a big sieve set over a bowl and extract as a lot of the chilies as attainable, discarding the seeds and stems.

Place the sauce over the warmth in a saucepan and cut back it whereas including some oregano or zaatar if desired, some cumin, salt, and a few brown sugar or piloncillo (juice or in chunks) or a pair tablespoons of date or carob molasses. Style and regulate seasoning.

NOTE: It’s also simpler to seed and take away the stem previous to submerging the chilies in water. Carrying gloves, seed the chilies and take away the stem as wanted.



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