Sunday, September 25, 2011

Munch Bunch 3 - Arabian Nights

Our beloved supper club met after seven weeks yesterday. Boy was it fun!

I’d mentioned last month that with everyone’s travels getting in the way, we couldn’t find a single weekend when we were all in Chicago. But that long gap only strengthened our enthusiasm to munch (eat) and bunch (gossip).

Last night’s theme was Arabian Nights. Carnivore and I played hosts. There is something magical about Middle Eastern food. The flavors, the spices, the versatility, not only make it easy but also enjoyable to cook. Safe to say everything was so delicious, our husbands love us more after last night! Here’s what we ate ... and drank:

Salvatore Calabrese's Fig Supreme Cocktail
Appetizer Platter
DSB and VB kicked off the night with a drool worthy joint effort. They made Falafels, Red Pepper Hummus and Tzatziki from scratch. We enjoyed these with some toasted pita. Recipes here and here.

Midi – Medi Pizza
This was a fusion pizza with Mediterranean and Arabic elements. I’d eaten something like it back in Melbourne and wanted to recreate the flavors. Recipe to follow soon.

Lamb Tagine
When MSM pulled this out of the oven, there were two vegetarians standing right beside her. The lust on their faces said it all. Just look at the olives and lamb. Now imagine it on a bed of buttery fluffy cous cous. How could you NOT want to eat it? Recipe (adapted from) here.

Vegetable Tagine
I cooked this for the first time when I did Bon Appetit’s two-week cleanse. It was the entree for us vegetarians and we served it with cous cous too. Recipe (adapted from) here.

Baklava
Move over Suzy Singh; we have a real MasterChef in our midst! DK's Baklava literally silenced us at the table. We sat there eating piece after piece refusing to say anything but, “Mmmm. Wow!” Without being too sweet and fatty, it was packed with layers of flavor. Recipe here.

Some of you might know that I’ve been stressed out about a few things lately. This night was just what I needed. There is something strangely therapeutic about cooking and sharing food with friends and family. Don’t you think so?

17 comments :

  1. the food look yuummm...
    Its good to find the people with same interest and party with them. I even love the theme the Arabian Nights, it got me to the dreams of real Arabian parties..

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  2. Yumm Yumm Yumm....it all looks soo so good...wish I was there at your party last night, gonna try the baklava asap...looks yummy...
    Waiting for your pizza recipe, looks delish...

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  3. oh! all that food looks so GOOD...good food definitely is therapeutic..but i am all for eating..cooking is not so much my cup of tea ;)) Baklava is espl so yummy!

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  4. Everything looks scrumptious! I love middle eastern food. There are so many vegetarian options too!

    Leia

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  5. All of this food is making me hungry!! I love middle eastern food. I really wonder sometimes, how did I ever live without hummus, just thinking of hummus and the indefinite flavor combinations makes me happy!

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  6. Love me some Arabian foods.. I can't live without hummus, kabobs etc.. Just can't :)

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  7. Stressed and you... hmm time to facetime again i say!!

    drool worthy food and above all.. very yumm"

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  8. Its a lot of hard work.. but everything looks yum and are making me hungry :( I love the spices and flavors in middle eastern food.. That lamb dish makes me nostalgic :(

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  9. Swati - It really was. And I'm so glad that I find like-minded people wherever I go. It's one of the things that makes constant moving bearable :)

    Anjali - Thanks! Make sure you adapt the recipe to suit your taste. Otherwise it might become too sweet. My friend heavily modified the recipe.

    Sovina - Haha!!! So when I see you, I can cook & you can eat! Both happy!

    Leia - It really was. And people have so many misconceptions about that cuisine. In fact it's among the most veg friendly cuisine I've tried.

    Priyanka - I hear ya. So many years without Hummus. I can't believe what I was missing.

    Kiran - Me neither. Actually, I cannot live without good food in general.

    Aditi - It was!!!

    Garima - We missed you. And yes, FaceTime soon.

    Hasini - Yes those spices are the heart of Middle Eastern food. Wish I could friend authentic ones in the US.

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  10. I seriously should move to Chicago. This post makes me want to, so we can be best friends and have dinner parties and drink lots of fig supremes and be fabulous! Omg. It would be so awesome!

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  11. All of it looks better than what you'd get at a restaurant. Yummy!

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  12. Yummy food!! I was just thinking of the middle eastern place we used to go to and for the life of me i cannot think of the name of it!! I love how u refer to husband as Carnivore!!

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  13. Jennifer - If this alone is making you think about moving, I should send you links to previous posts about our dinner parties :)

    Bones - My sentiments exactly.

    Kavery - It really was! And wayy healthier too.

    Namu - It's Mecca Bah! And yes, he is a pure carnivore!

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  14. Just mouthwatering dishes...looks delicious!

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