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Mediterranean Appetizer - M'nazaleh

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Yippee's picture
Yippee

Mediterranean Appetizer - M'nazaleh

Hi, all:


I'm trying to recreate a Mediterranean appetizer M'nazaleh, which has tulip (crunchy like pickles) and marinated grilled eggplant in it.  Could anyone suggest an authentic approach to prepare these ingredients?  Thanks in advance for your input. 


Yippee

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Cold Barbequed Eggplant, that calls for salted and drained 1/2 inch slices (1 hr) then rinse and dry.  Grill on both sides and then let cool.  Sprinkle with spices and slowly cover with olive oil.  Let stand 7-8 hours minimum and serve.  It's Italian. 


I gave my sister my Lebanese cookbook.  I'm sure one or more would be in there but I can't get to it.


Tulip, do you mean squash or zucchini blossoms?


Mini

Yippee's picture
Yippee

This appetizer goes SO well with your bread and I've made up my mind that I'll duplicate it at home.



Sprinkle with spices....



Could you please specify which spices? 


Tulip was what the waiter told us.  It's pink in color. 


Yippee

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I understand the flower petals taste like cucumbers, and cucumbers go well with rye and other breads.  Tulip is a short season.


About the spices...  Lets see... for 4 large eggplants, sliced grilled brown on each side and arranged into a serving dish: salt, a couple of chopped garlic cloves, a little bunch of parsley, a few mint leaves, some basil leaves, plenty of fresh ground pepper and topped with 125ml (half a cup) olive oil. 


In other words, put what you like on them fresh from the garden.  I'd be tempted to add a few pickled capers (the ones with stems) instead of salt and some fresh tulip pedals in season (doesn't that sound so exotic!)  or a finely sliced section of skinny cucumber.  Sliced air dried bacon on the side.  Radish sprouts cut at 2" high.  A bowl of cottage cheese.  


Mini


After reading and seeing Daisy's entry below, wedges of lemon and a dish of olives.

Daisy_A's picture
Daisy_A

Hi Yippee,


Was interested by your description of this appetiser as I really like Mediterranean and arabic foods.


I found this picture of M'nazaleh at Dish Dash, in San Franscisco, which is apparently noted for it. Apologies if you know this! http://veggiemonologues.blogspot.com/2007/07/v-and-i-decided-to-stick-close-to-home.html


They seem to be presenting it as Lebanese/Persian in origin. I suppose herbs used for general marinade could include parsley, coriander, tarragon, mint, maybe chives. Recipes I've come across for Lebanese pickled aubergine/eggplant, however, refer to them being pickled with walnuts and garlic, sometimes also pomegranate seeds, sometimes parsley.


Seems like the final dish has pickled cucumbers in it, as suggested by Mini, and some definitely pink things, plus olives. I have read that the final mix can also contain tomatoes and walnuts.


Wishing you happy further exploration of this,  Daisy_A


 

Yippee's picture
Yippee

for your information. It will be very helpful to me to expand my repertoire of Mediterranean dishes. 


 


Yippee

Daisy_A's picture
Daisy_A

Hi Yippee and Mini,


I'm interested in the tulips here. I have been reading John Evelyn's Acetaria__A_Discourse_of_Sallets from the C17 and was particularly impressed with the number of edible flowers, nuts, wild herbs and flower buds he recommends adding to salads.


I've been thinking about flowers I could use from my own garden and as well as the flowers of most herbs, have thought about violets, nasturtium, marigold and roses (apparently you have to cut off the green 'heel').


With the tulips, if M'nazaleh was originally a Persian dish, I'm thinking that they would have historically used species tulips rather than the cultivars. What do you think? We were thinking of planting the species, anyway, as despite being smaller they naturalize better.  


Kind regards, Daisy_A

Daisy_A's picture
Daisy_A

Many thanks indeed, Mini. I found a basic list online, but yours is a much better one.


Obviously it advises caution on tulips. However there are flowers on here that we have in the garden that I would never have thought were edible, but which this suggests have really interesting flavours or uses, like Day Lily and Gladiolus.


Food for thought....


Best wishes,  Daisy_A

cyalexa's picture
cyalexa

Perhaps the waiter said "turnip".


Pickled turnips are pink and crunchy and commonly served with Mediterranean food. I have never made them but am having a Mediterranean theme at an upcoming party so I just might look for a recipe! I'll post here if I find something.

Yippee's picture
Yippee

I was wondering how a flower could turn so crunchy.  Now I know.  I must have heard it wrong. 


Please share your recipe if you feel that it's good. Thank you.


Yippee

cyalexa's picture
cyalexa

I won't have time to do it for my upcoming party as it takes 10 days, but, here is a recipe that looks good to me.


http://cookeatshare.com/recipes/pickled-turnips-293

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I found an almost identical turnip recipe which has equal parts vinegar to water (for 4c of liquid) with 3 Tablespoons of pickling salt dissolved into it.  The pink color comes from a beet (like the above recipe) and this Syrian recipe says if one doesn't have a fresh beet, a pickled one will do.  Also ready in ten days but the family eats them sooner. (It's like warm bread... the looks are too enticing to wait.) 


I also have a recipe for pickled nasturtium pods. Eliza Smith's 1739 cookbook The Complete Housewife  (could also be Compleat.)  The taste is peppery capers.   As we planted lots of Nasturtium flowers this year, I'll be trying this one.



  • 4.5 Tbs pickling salt

  • 3 c water

  • 1 pint of  gree plump nasturtium pods

  • 4 whole cloves

  • one mace blade (covers the nutmeg nut, whole)

  • 1/4 whole nutmeg (slice with a thick knife and a hammer)

  • 1 slice of horshradish (about 1.5" in diameter, pencil thick) cut toothpick size

  • 1 shallot peeled

  • 1 cup of white vinegar to cover



  1. Take one cup of the water, dissolve 1.5 Tbs into it and cover the pods to stand one day.

  2. Drain and repeat step one.  Three times over 3 days.

  3. Dran and put into a sterile pint jar with the splices (all optional) and cover with the vinegar.  Cover with a non-reactive cap and let stand room temp for a week.  Then store in the refrigerator or a cool dark place, will keep a year or more.  Makes 1.75 cups.

Yippee's picture
Yippee

Quite a few new ingredients to me.  Need to figure out where to get them first.


Yippee