Enough about Food Wars, does everything have to be about war? Can't we just enjoy hummus and tabouleh without thinking that someone or some state is stealing it from us... Can't people understand that this is just borrowed land and borrowed time... Can't we appreciate our differences instead? Build on them, share them, and teach our children ... stop being a dreamer, not in your lifetime...
Anyway, I was able to go to the Tabouleh Festival and let me say it was amazing! I was very impressed. A lot of people showed up at the tent in Saifi and it was very crowded. The ambiance exciting, the goal was met. It smelled like onion... It was a huge tabbouleh indeed! The children sang the song tabouleh tabouleh and we went home satisfied ... We had a little something to do with the success of this immense event. That was the goal!
My son Albert singing, with Omar Farhat playing the derbakeh.
I also went to see Aredna, the food exhibition in Dahieh. I learned again something new about the mouneh - that depresses me because I thought I knew it all. No, not quite... I learned how to make debs teen, meaning fig molasses, another recipe to include in my book. I bought interesting packages to add to all my mouneh items in my pantry. I got a bag of dried Damascus roses. I intend to use them to decorate cheese platters and to add them in some of my cooking to give an exotic touch to the dishes. I bought another bag of "cammounieh", I can't get enough of this spice mixture. I really find it to be a piece of art. Its smell is just exquisite and the dried rose petals are so gorgeous in the mixture. I bought a bag of red lentils from Yohmor, a village known for its lentils in South Lebanon. I have been told that they are quite special. Of course, I passed by to see my friend Abou Cassem. I got from him some za'tar roughly sieved to use in cooking my tomato sauces. A man in the corner was making brooms, I could not resist for a mere 4.000 LL. Some producers sell bags for flavoring stock. I got a whole bunch of those to use for my chicken stock. I also got a bag of dried rosemary to use to season meats. I'm thinking of going back again because it is truly an exceptional market. Producers and farmers come from all over Lebanon: Hermel, Jbeil, Bekaa, Baalbeck, etc. It is so interesting to talk to them about their production and stock up on mouneh items for the winter. My next visit will be to see if indeed there is something else that I can learn from mouneh making. Min' shuf!
Here is the man who makes the brooms: