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The thing I like about Lebanon is that wherever you go to buy food, you get out of the place having learned something valuable to your cooking skills’ evolution. In Mar Mikhael, the street where we live, I sometimes feel like time has stopped. Leaving new constructions and hip bars and restaurants aside, small merchants still exist, people living in the neighborhood for ages still stop by to buy their groceries, everyone knows everyone and life is not so complicated.

So when our guest chef Jean came back last week from the grocer’s with a new kind of bean (white beans to be more exact) AND a new recipe, I was thrilled to try something new. This dish has Armenian origins and can serve as a nice homey meal when you have no idea what to cook.

What you’ll need:

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– Β 2 cups of White Beans

– 1 big White Onion, diced

– 6 cloves of garlic, crushed

– Β Fresh coriander leaves
– Β The juice of 1 lemon
– Β Salt and Pepper to taste
– Olive oil
How to make it:
1) In a casserole, cook the onions in olive oil, then add the beans and stir
2) When the beans are cooked at 90%, add the crushed garlic and coriander leaves and toss until well combined. Season to taste
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3) Add the lemon juice on top, toss and leave for a minute then turn off the fire and you’re done!
Serve with fresh onions, slices of lemon, and green chili if you’re a spicy lover πŸ™‚
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My advice would be to enjoy this dish on a summer day in the mountains, where the weather is fresh and you’re away from city heat!
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Guest Chef Jean Fares After quite some time, we are proud to welcome back our beloved Guest Chef Jean Fares! This time, he outdid himself with this delicious and all-fresh seafood pasta. He bought fresh calamari, fresh herbs, fresh vegetables and most importantly shrimps that were still alive (yes, that’s how fresh it was!) to make this absolutely phenomenal spaghetti dish that I keep on longing for ever since. Believe me, try to make it and you’ll definitely adopt it.

Jean’s birthday is tomorrow so I’ll be baking him a nice and yummy cake for the occasion (the one I had baked here).

Here’s what you’ll need:

Ingredients

– Fresh Shrimps. Keep the heads and shells aside to make the juice

– Fresh Calamari

– Coriander leaves

– 3 to 4 small tomatoes (choose them very red), chopped

– White wine

– Spaghetti

– Salt and Pepper

– 1 Onion (diced)

– 3 cloves of Garlic (diced)

How to make it:

1) Boil your spaghetti al dente and drain

2) Chop the onions, the garlic and chili pepper (If you want to spice it up)

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2) In a wok or pan, heat a bit of olive oil and cook the onions, garlic and pepper, then add the shrimp heads, white wine and chopped tomatoes. Let it simmer and reduce

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4) On a grill, cook the calamari

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5) Mix them all when they’re done, top it all with some fresh coriander leaves and experience an explosion of flavors πŸ™‚

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