Dish #5: Shish Barak (Lebanon)

Shish Barak in Yogurt sauce is a Lebanese dish likely held over from when the region was occupied by the Ottoman Turks. When made correctly, I could see this being a sort of comfort food.

This may have been the first dish that didn’t really come out how it was probably supposed to. I post this here with apologize to Lebanese people everywhere.

This took me what felt like a long time to make. I’m sure with a lot of practice this dish wouldn’t take nearly as long as it took me tonight.

I will say the flavors of this dish were fantastic, so I will definitely be taking another go at it.

I’m not going to spell out the recipe I used because it’s long, but know that I used the dough from this recipe and the meat and yogurt from this recipe.

I started out making the dough. It was very easy, though I had to add a bit more water to make it come together.
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While the dough was resting, I made the meat mixture. Most often in Lebanon, when red meat is eaten it is lamb. I’m not huge fan of lamb, so I made mine with beef, which I think is acceptable. It was seasoned with Lebanese spice which has things in it like all-spice and nutmeg and the whole thing smelled like Thanksgiving. If this is a common spice used, it must smell like Thanksgiving there all the time! Though I guess Lebanon doesn’t have Thanksgiving so…. Bottom Line: meat was delicious!

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Next I rolled out the dough and cut little circles. Make the dough is on the thin side. I used a small biscuit cutter to make my circles.

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Then you stuff the dumplings. Traditionally, these are small, but honestly, I would have preferred to make them bigger so there was more meat in each bite.

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If you can, get help here. It’s tedious 😦

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Set those aside and make the sauce. The recipe called for Labneh but Greek yogurt is just fine. That’s what I used. The sauce is yogurt and some water melted together in a pan. Once it’s hot, add salt, garlic, mint and lemon juice. Garlic and lemon are popular in Lebonese cuisine, though I think this sauce could have used more garlic.
Add the dumplings and let them cook in the sauce.

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The sauce is where I messed up. Granted the flavors were there and it was a great flavor palate, my yogurt fell apart because my heat was too high. It resembled ricotta cheese instead of the creamy yogurt it was supposed to be. Next time I’ll have to fix that.

I would definitely recommend making this dish, but maybe on the weekend when I won’t feel so rushed.

Enjoy!

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One thought on “Dish #5: Shish Barak (Lebanon)

  1. Pingback: Dish #15: Scallion Pancakes (China) | Food on the Table

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