November 4, 2010

kushari (Egyptian chili)

I was so happy to have tuned in to the Travel Channel the other day and learned about this dish! It was an interesting No Reservations episode that showed Anthony Bourdain in Egypt. His Egyptian guide made him try a very popular fast food in Egypt called kushari. There's also a very informative video on how to make it in this SBS Food website. There are many variations of how the name is spelled. I found out that koshary and koshari are also acceptable. I guess it doesn't really matter just as long as it's made with the same tasty combination of ingredients and flavors. The mix of grains instantly appealed to me as soon as I saw it. How can it go wrong when it's loaded with lentils, pasta and rice? We may never get a chance to travel to Egypt but I'm glad to have discovered the wonderful flavors of this Egyptian dish.

Kushari is a mix of the ingredients shown above. (1) roasted chickpeas which were sprinkled with cumin, paprika, salt, pepper and olive oil (2) cooked lentils (3) macaroni (4) rice ~ we prefer this brown rice mix but white rice may also be used (5) onion rings ~ pan fried in olive oil until toasted and caramelized (6) fresh tomato sauce ~ chopped fresh tomatoes seasoned with salt and pepper then simmered with garlic, onions and additional tomato paste in olive oil until rich and thick. Garnish with chopped parsley then serve with chopped hot chili peppers or hot sauce and sprinkle with lemon juice or vinegar.

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