If someone had told me I would be eating raw lamb and going back for seconds and thirds I may not have believed them, but kibbeh has become one of my favourite dishes. If you are looking to broaden your cooking skills, learn more about a culture or just try something different, you will not be disappointed with this this cooking class Lebanon’s Trademark Dishes.
Our class starts with an introduction to our chef Norma and a handout that includes all the recipes we’ll be cooking, along with helpful hints and tips. We also get a jar of Lebanese spices to take home with us – very handy for me in the next coming months as I recreate the dishes!
Norma’s hands-on approach to teaching, along with her passion and excitement for cooking, makes it very easy to pick up the skills you need to become a master of Lebanese cuisine.
We start off with something nice and easy – tabbouleh – where we learn important tips like not to cut wet parsley as it ruins the flavour. Upon my first try, it’s the BEST tabbouleh I have every eaten and never again will I settle for the supermarket stuff! The ready-made version doesn’t even begin to show you how fresh and full of flavour this dish should be!
Now to the raw meat dish kibbeh. We start with good quality lamb bought from a trusted butcher. You have to be very very careful with who you buy meat from if you are making a raw meat dish, and Norma explains that only the best quality meat is put into the blender with the spices mix. She glides through her presentation. We make a cooked version for those not as adventurous, and pop the cooked one into the oven and the raw version in the fridge (it’s important to keep it cool before serving – another great tip from Norma).
During a slight hiccup with the pastry for the baqlawa and a quick shopping trip by our lovely front desk rep, we create a delicious hummus (a mammoth batch enough to feed a small army, in fact). All this food is making me very hungry!