Your Favorite Recipes and Poems of 2015 Part 2

Thanks for coming back! On Friday I shared your top five poem choices from my blog during the calendar year of 2015. As promised, it’s time for the top five recipes. Here they are in no particular order:

poems and recipes (1)

Macaronis bil Laban (Noodles with Yogurt). Ironically, this is a recipe I can’t eat. But you all loved it, and I’m delighted because when I could eat gluten and dairy I loved it too. It’s a simple, quick meal that can easily be adjusted for picky palates.

Maqluba: Lebanese Eggplant and Rice Casserole. I think maybe you all were just as impressed as I was that I turned out the casserole in the picture. This dish seems intimidating, but it takes very few ingredients and intermediate skill. Basically, you need to know your stove and how it cooks rice. If you are decent with that, you just have to plan for time to make this dish. And you won’t be disappointed. If you are, call me so I can eat your leftovers.

Fattoush is a bread salad popular in Lebanon. Again, one I can’t eat, unless the bread is removed. This salad is delicious. It’s also one that can sit and improve in flavor. Generally speaking you don’t want a salad to sit, but this one is fine to make ahead and mix the toasted pita in later.

M’dardara (Lentils with Rice) is another dish I learned in Lebanon. It makes me ridiculously happy that you love my Middle Eastern dishes so much. This one is my favorite to make and eat. In fact, it’s the dinner plan for tonight. My husband got new knives for Christmas. I am very excited to give them a go at slicing onions for caramelization.

Finally, Strawberry Cream Cheesecake Pie. I’m gonna go ahead and guess it was the “cheesecake” that got you. Another dish I can’t eat, another dish you can make in a snap. And the only dish that I didn’t learn in the Middle East. I can’t blame you. This is delicious. When I find the right dairy- and gluten-free products, I’m going to give this a go and enjoy myself.

If there is a post you loved you didn’t find here, in Part 1 or in my Top 10 Blog Posts, leave me a comment and let me know. As always, thank you for reading!

Shawna Ayoub

Shawna Ayoub is an essayist, fiction writer, poet and instructor with an MFA in creative writing from Indiana University. Some of her work has been published in The Manifest-Station, Role Reboot, [wherever], The Huffington Post, The Oxford Review and Exit 7. Her writing explores the intersections of race, place and survivorship. She writes with honesty about her own experience in order to transform pain.

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