Sunday, January 07, 2007

Recipe for Loubia bi Zeit


  • 1 lb. green beans (you can use any kind, but I really think it's best with fresh Italian pole beans if one can get them, which is what my Tayta uses when she can get them; also, in a pinch you can use frozen green beans)
  • 5 tbsp olive oil (though of course use your judgment on the oil - I felt like this was a little too much, though I should also say that I just eyeballed my measurements on this, so I may have added more than five perfect tablespoons)
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • small can of plum tomatoes, drained and chopped (the recipe called for a 7 oz can, which I didn't even know existed, but I used a 14.5 oz can and that seemed like the right amount)
  • 1 crushed dried chili pepper
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • (This recipe also called for cayenne to taste, which I didn't do as my Tayta does not use cayenne when she makes it - I'm not sure she uses a dried chili-pepper either, but I used it and it seemed fine....)

  1. Bring a saucepan of water to boil. Trim the beans and add them to the water; simmer for five minutes; drain them thoroughly.
  2. Heat the oil in a skillet and saute the onion for 5-6 minutes, until softened but not browned.
  3. Add the garlic and stir; saute for another two minutes.
  4. Stir in the tomatoes, crushed pepper, and cayenne to taste.
  5. Pour into a serving bowl.
Can be served warm, room temperature, or cold (especially delicious in the very hot summer right from the refridgerator).

I got this recipe from this book, which I got very cheap, and which has many of the regular, everyday dishes that I know from family gatherings. It's a pretty accessible book, though not every dish has an accompanying picture.


Mel said...

thanks! the seasoning was what I was wondering about, if there was some secret beyond garlic (which is my default for everything I cook)...I'll have to play with the chili/cayenne possibilities.

Dr. Crazy said...

As far as I can tell, the secret in lebanese cooking is always either garlic or lemon juice - sometimes both :) I'm glad I could help!