We have some neighbors who are from the Middle East. Hanaa is originally from Lebanon and her husband Aziz is originally from the Jordan area. Every now and then Hanna makes her delicious hummus and shares it with us. She brought us some of that delicious hummus on Thursday. For Friday’s dinner, I decided to make a meal around the hummus.
As you all know, I have a ton of of cookbooks. I have many different ethnic cookbooks too. For this meal, I just went to the Middle Eastern section of my library and started going through my collection, looking for the perfect entree to compliment the hummus. I chose an Arabic beef and green bean stew that I served over couscous. Beirut Lebanon used to be known as the Paris of the East, and Lebanon is kind of the culinary capital of the Middle East. A lot of foods from this area are French in origin, with Middle Eastern accents. This recipe is one of many that gets its roots from France and has been highlighted with Middle Eastern and Lebanese accents.
Arabic Beef and Green Bean Stew
3 TBSP olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
1-1 1/2 lbs beef, cut into strips
2 cups green beans, cut into pieces that are about 1 inch in ize
3 tomatoes, diced
1 TBSP tomato paste
1 TBSP garlic
salt & pepper to taste
1 TBSP za’taar seasoning
2 cups water
Saute the green beans, onion and garlic in the olive oil for about 2-3 minutes, then add the beef and cook until the beef is completely done.
Once the beef and vegetables are cooked, add the tomatoes, tomato paste, seasonings and water. Mix everything together well, cover and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a medium heat and continue to cook for about 7-10 more minutes, or until the green beans are tender.
When the beans are tender and the sauce has been thickened and reduced, it is ready. You can serve it over couscous, rice or pasta. I chose to serve it over couscous and I added some of my leftover salsa rouge to the couscous to make it really come to life. Puerca o Cerda con Salsa Rouge To make the meal complete, we heated up some pitas, served it with Hanaa’s delicious hummus, and a Spanish Temperanillo. Though we are in Denver, I made it an Arabian night.