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> Waraq Dawali
> Mahashi Recipe
> Juices, Pickles and Spirits
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> The Evolution of the Palestinian Kitchen
> The fig and grape seasons (mawasim al tazib):
> The Olive –Picking Season (mawsim al-zaytun):
> Harvest Time
Fruit and vegetable juice is extracted from pomegranates, grapes, oranges, lemons, apples, carrots and tomatoes.
They include olives of all kinds, cauliflower, cucumbers, zucchini, egg-plant, turnips, and carrots.
- Wine: is extracted from grapes, both white and red.
- 'Araq: is extracted from white grapes and is distilled and refined three times with anise. It is served straight, or diluted with water or ice. It is the popular drink in the region.
One of the customs still observed in the town of Bethlehem and its area is the preparation of delicious foods made from milk in the spring season, and stored to be eaten in the remaining months of the year such as white cheese, and labaneh, viscous yoghurt preferably made from ewes' milk as follows:
1- Yoghurt: It is made from lukewarm milk and a little curdled milk. It is left some hours to set. It is then placed in the refrigerator until desired.
2- White cheese: It is made from ewes' milk. For every tin of heated milk a chemical pill, bought from the pharmacy is added. It is left for two hours to set, then it is placed in a cloth sack to clarify and then it is poured into small square pieces of cloth. Afterwards, they are covered and arranged over one another. Over them a large piece of wood is laid for two days until water is filtered. If you want to keep the cheese for the summer it should be preserved in salt for four days. Then it is boiled in water, salt and mastic. It is taken out of the water and left to cool. Later it is stored in glass containers in the water in which it was boiled. The containers should be well sealed.
3- Curdled milk and butter: Boiled milk is placed in a "Siqa", a goat skin bag, which is tightly closed. The bag is moved right and left several times until part of it sets becoming as large as an orange. This is butter. The milk now tastes differently and is called curdled milk which is eaten with the food.
4- Animal fat: Butter is melted in a utensil and then purified. Soaked crushed wheat, nutmeg and cinnamon are added. It is boiled until it crystalizes. Then it is purified and preserved in glass containers until needed. Crushed wheat is useful here because it absorbs whatever water remains in the butter. It is edible and is called "dhobeh" (lit. molten).
5- Labaneh: It is made from curdled milk. It is placed in a cloth bag to thoroughly clarify. Then it is poured into a container and sprinkled with a little salt and mixed well. It is kept in the refrigerator until desired.
6- Dry curdled milk: Curdled milk is heated a little, and then poured in a light cloth sack and left to purify and solidify. It is then placed in a container and salted. Mahaleb, cinnamon and nutmeg are added, and it is mixed well. Small balls, in the shape of apples are made and placed over a piece of cloth on a tray and left for four days until they are completely dried.
Recipe for its use: The dry curdled milk is placed in a jar container. A little water is added to it and crushed by hand, and it is called "rubbing of dry curdled milk". It is used in meat soup.
Source:"Bethlehem, The Immortal Town" by Giries Elali.
Source: Bethlehem, The Immortal Town" by Giries Elali