Mloukheya

Mloukheya

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2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup Mloukheya powder
5 cups boiling water
10 dry bay leaves
5 pieces of meat (lamb, beef, or chicken)
1/4 cup harissa arabi (not from a can)
1 head of garlic, crushed
1 tomato, finely chopped
Dash of salt and pepper

  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot.  Add in the mloukheya powder and stir.
  2. Once incorporated, add in the boiling water.  Cover and boil for one hour (stirring occasionally so the bottom doesn't scorch).
  3. Transfer to a crock pot and cook on medium for 10 hours (every now and then stir to make sure it's not sticking in the bottom).
  4. While the sauce is cooking mix the meat with harissa, garlic, and tomato and let marinate.
  5. After you have cooked the sauce for 10 hours add in the meat and stir.  Cook on high for 6 hours. (About half way through turn the lid sideways to let some of the steam out.)
  6. Serve in a shallow bowl and eat with bread.

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I'm sure your first question is, "WHAT is mloukheya?!"  It is a black soup made from leaves that are dried and turned into powder.  Although it can be cooked at any time, it is traditionally served for Arab Nehw Year as a symbol of prosperity for the future.

It is one of my favorite dishes but I've always been told how difficult it is to make.  As you can tell from the recipe, it's not that difficult, it just takes a lot of time.  Last night, in preparation for the Arab New Year, I asked my mother in law to teach me how to make it.  Today I shared it with everyone and they gave it their stamp of approval.  

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