The Veggie Gourmand With Greg Malouf

BY HARPER'S BAZAAR ARABIA / Oct 18 2015 / 14:58 PM

There is more to Middle Eastern food than meat and rice, insists the vanguard of new-wave Arabic cuisine, Greg Malouf

The Veggie Gourmand With Greg Malouf
The Veggie Gourmand With Greg Malouf
Entertain Greg Malouf
The Veggie Gourmand With Greg Malouf
The Veggie Gourmand With Greg Malouf
ITP Images
Chef Greg Malouf Dubai UAE February 2015photo by Ajith Narendra ITP Images15042015_Chef Greg _HBZGreg Malouf

LEMON POSSET WITH FENNEL SHORTBREAD THINS

 Serves 4

Grated zest and 120ml lemon juice (about 2½ lemons)

125g caster sugar (superfine)

450ml pure cream (double or heavy)

½ teaspoon ground ginger (optional)

Candied citrus peel, to serve (optional) or a dab of orange flower or rose petal jam

1.       Combine the lemon zest, lemon juice and the sugar in a small saucepan and heat gently until the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat. 2. Pour the cream into a different saucepan and add the ground ginger, if using. Heat gently until it comes to the boil. Pour in the hot lemon syrup and return to a simmer, whisking all the time. Simmer for 20 seconds then remove from the heat. Cool slightly then strain through a sieve into a jug. Pour into decorative glasses and chill overnight, or until set. 3. Top each lemon posset with a small twist of candied peel and serve with shortbread biscuits.

 

[Subhead] WEDDING COUSCOUS WITH HERBS AND FLOWERS

Serves 4

200g couscous

70ml extra-virgin olive oil

250ml boiling water

1 green chilli, deseeded and finely shredded

Finely grated zest of 1 orange

1 teaspoon butter

2 tablespoons barberries

 25g pistachios

2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds

1⁄3 cup shredded parsley leaves

1⁄3 cup shredded tarragon leaves

1⁄3 cup shredded purple basil

A handful of edible flowers, to garnish, such as rose petals

Greek-style yoghurt, to serve

1-2 tablespoons green harissa

400ml vegetable stock

 Salt and ground black pepper

 

1.       Put the couscous in a bowl and add a tablespoon of oil. Rub it into the couscous evenly, pour on the boiling water and stir well. Cover with a tea towel and leave for 10 minutes, stirring with a fork from time to time to prevent the couscous from clumping together. 2. When the couscous is cool, use your fingers to break down any remaining small clumps. Then reheat by covering with a tea towel and microwaving on high for two minutes. This ‘mini-steam’ should help make the grains even fluffier. 3. Add the chilli and orange zest and mix thoroughly. 4. Stir the green harissa into the vegetable stock and bring to a gentle simmer. Season, to taste, then pour into a serving jug. 5. Melt the butter in a small frying pan. Add the barberries and pistachios and sauté for a minute. 6. Add to the couscous, together with the pomegranate seeds and herbs, and toss everything together. Scatter on the rose petals and serve with the jug of hot harissa broth and plenty of cold creamy yoghurt on the side.

 

[Subhead] PUMPKIN KIBBEH STUFFED WITH FETA & SPINACH

Makes 12

KIBBEH SHELL

450g butternut squash

 Salt and ground black pepper

Olive oil

100g fine bulgur wheat

½ small onion, finely chopped

1 tablespoon tahini, well stirred

1 tablespoon plain flour

¼ teaspoon ground allspice

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Greek-style yoghurt, to serve

Extra-virgin olive oil, to serve

FETA AND SPINACH FILLING

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

1 small onion, finely diced

100g spinach leaves

Salt and ground black pepper

Feta or your choice of melting white cheese or savoury butter

 

1. Make the kibbeh shell first. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Cut the pumpkin into chunks and arrange in a small roasting tin. Toss with salt, pepper and a generous splash of olive oil. Cover with foil and roast for 25 to 30 minutes, or until very tender. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. 2. Soak the bulgur wheat in warm water for five minutes. Tip into a sieve and, using your hands, squeeze out all the water. Tip into a tea towel and twist to extract even more water. When it’s as dry as you can manage, tip it into a large mixing bowl. Slice away the skin from the pumpkin and weigh out 250g of flesh. Add it to the bowl with the bulgur wheat and mash the two together to form a smooth purée. Add the onion, tahini, flour and spices and season generously with salt and pepper. Knead with your hands until the mixture is thoroughly blended. Chill for at least 30 minutes. 3. To make the filling, heat the oil and butter in a medium frying pan and add the onion. Sweat for five to 10 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add the spinach leaves and stir over the heat, until it wilts. Remove from the heat and leave to cool. Season with salt and pepper then chop finely. 4. To make the kibbeh, divide the shell mixture into 12 even portions. Take one portion in the palm of one hand and roll it smooth with the other. Using a forefinger, make an indentation in the ball and shape it carefully into a hollow shell. Try to make the shell thin and even. 5. Fill the shell with a scant teaspoon of the spinach filling, together with a small cube of feta or a flavoured butter. Add another pinch of spinach, then wet the edges of the opening and pinch it closed. You are aiming to form a small torpedo-shaped dumpling, with slightly tapered ends. Repeat with the remaining 11 portions. 6. Cover the stuffed kibbeh in the fridge for between 30 minutes to four hours. 7. Pour vegetable oil into a medium, heavy-based saucepan to a depth of about 6cm and heat to 180°C (350°F). Fry the kibbeh, a few at a time, for four to five minutes, turning them so they are a deep golden brown on all sides. Serve with a dollop of yoghurt.