Welcome to the
Palestinian
Kitchen

While some traditional dishes, such as Falafel, Hummus, Shawarma etc can be found throughout the Middle East, Palestinians, like other M.E countries have their own claim to certain dishes, which are are varied and distinct. Many areas throughout Palestine have there own variations of ingredients and dishes.

Gazan Falafel style recipe

2 large cups dry chickpeas, rinsed and soaked in water for 16 hours
1 bunch cilantro (roughly 3/4 cup chopped)
1 bunch dill (roughly 1/2 cup chopped)
1 bunch parsley (roughly 1 cup chopped)
7 garlic cloves
5 hot green chilies, adjust based on personal preference
1 Tbs. each: cumin, coriander, salt, and black pepper
1/2 tsp nutmeg
Put through a food grinder or pulse in food processor in batches, starting with chickpeas:
Set aside for 2 hours, then add immediately before frying:
1 tsp baking soda
2 Tbs roasted sesame seeds
Shape in small patties (dip hands in a little water if necessary to prevent sticking) or use a falafel mold, then fry in hot oil for around 3 mins (4-5 at a time) Drain on a paper towel. Enjoy!

Eggplant Stew with chickpease
(Tabeekh Bitinjan)

2 lbs eggplants, cut into 2 inch cubes or half-circles, depending on variety (I used the thin seedless Japanese variety, but any variety will do)
1 lb lean stew beef
1 onion, chopped (roughly 1 cup)
5 T. light olive oil, divided
Assorted spices: 1 tsp Allspice, 1 clove, 4 black pepper corns, 4 cardamom pods, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 bay leaf
Water as needed (8-10 cups or so)
1 14 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 6 oz can tomato paste
6 cloves garlic
1 tsp salt
If using larger eggplants, soak in a heavily salted water bath for 15 minutes, or sprinkle with salt and set aside in a colander for 20 minutes until eggplants begin to sweat. Rinse, drain and pat dry. Fry in hot vegetable oil and drain well, or drizzle with olive oil and roast in oven on cookie sheets until browned from bottom, about 30 minutes. Flip pieces over to brown other side or switch your oven to broil for 5 minutes.
 
Meanwhile, rinse meat and pat dry. Heat 3 Tbs. olive oil in a non-stick pan and brown meat. Add onions and sautee together until golden. Fill pot with enough water to cover submerge meat. Bring to a boil, skimming any froth that rises to the surface. Reduce heat to medium low. Add whole spices, tied in a piece of gauze or disposable tea filter if desired, and cover for 1 1/2 hours until meat is fork tender.
Strain meat, making sure to reserve broth. Discard whole spices.
Return meat and broth to a clean pot and add tomato paste and chickpeas. Bring to a boil. Gently stir in fried or roasted eggplants and let simmer. Meanwhile, make the tiqlaya: Mash garlic and salt in a mortar and pestle. Heat 2 Tbs. olive oil in a small frying pan and add mashed garlic, stirring constantly for 30 seconds to a minute. Add garlic to eggplant stew, de-glazing any leftover garlic scrapings with a little of the tomato stew.
Garnish with chopped parsley or basil, if desired. Serve with bread or white rice.
The above two recipe's are from "The Gaza Kitchen: A Palestinian Culinary Journey" is a cookbook and a documentary portrait of the Gaza Strip by Laila El-Haddad and Maggie Schmitt, published by Just World Books.

Maqluba- upside down rice and meat

half cup vegetable oil, divided
1 onion, finely chopped
half kilo lamb, cut in medium-size chops
salt to taste
1.5 teaspoon allspice
half teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon cinnamon
3 cardamom, crushed
1 bay leaf
1 kilo eggplant, peeled and sliced
3 tomatoes, sliced
1.5 cup rice, thoroughly washed
Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a saucepan, add onions and lamb chops and stir over a medium heat for couple of minutes. Season with salt, black pepper, allspices, cardamom, cinnamon, and bay leaf. Add 4 cups of water, cover the pot and let simmer until cooked (cooking time varies from an hour to two and half, depending on meat type).
Meanwhile, heat the rest of vegetable oil in large frying pan. Add eggplant slices and sauté both sides until golden brown. Place them on paper towel to absorb oil and set side.
In a big pot, add a small pinch of rice (to avoid burning of the meat). Arrange lamb chops, tomato slices, eggplant slices in layers. Pour lamb stock, and then add rice. Add a small pinch of salt (optional). Bring the pot to a boil over a medium heat. Then cover it and turn the heat down to low and let simmer until rice is cooked (from 20 to 30 minutes).
Leave the pot to cool for 15 to 20 minutes, and then carefully flip it up-side down over a serving platter. Serve hot with fresh yogurt or Arabic salad. With thanks to Eman, from the Palestinian Kitchen
Lentil Soup (Shorbet Adas)
Ingredients
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup onion, finely chopped
1 cup red lentils, thoroughly washed
2 cubes vegetable stock
Salt to taste
1 table spoon cumin
1 tea spoon turmeric
1/2 lemon, squeezed
Parsley for garnish
In a pot over medium heat, saute the chopped onions with olive oil until lightly browned. Add lentils and stir with onions for a minute or two (roasting lentils before cooking gives them extra flavor). Add vegetable stock and 6 cups of water (or you can add 6 cups of homemade chicken stock). Cover the pot and leave it under low-medium heat for about an hour or until lentils are very tender and creamy.
Now after having them cooked, add cumin, turmeric, salt to taste, and juice of half a lemon. Blend the whole mixture using an electric blender to make a coherent and more creamy soup. Garnish with parsley and serve hot.