Nowadays, gastronomy is a reflection of a nation’s cultural heritage. The economic and social situation is clearly shown by the value of this culinary art. Each country has its own culinary speciality. Among others, Lebanon has a culinary mix thanks to its geographical position bordering Israel and Syria. Lebanese cuisine has a multitude of flavors in terms of gastronomic specialties. Vegetables occupy an essential place in vegetarian meals.
Characteristics of the Lebanese cuisine
Historically, the Lebanese cuisine is a metamorphosis of the Mediterranean cuisine. The country’s culinary specialty is simple but rich in taste, including fresh fish, olive oil, vegetables and fruits. The Lebanese dish consists of a cold starter, a main course and a dessert with fresh fruit and coffee. The Lebanese cuisine uses condiments in the concocted meals: coriander, saffron, sumac, cardamom, etc. Many Lebanese dishes are vegetarian because vegetables are omnipresent in Lebanese meals. In principle, fish does not really occupy an important place in Lebanese dishes. The most famous vegetable dishes in Lebanese cuisine are: the fattouche salad and eggplant caviar with tahini.
The fattouche salad
This typical Lebanese dish is based on fresh vegetables from the region. This salad is easy to prepare. It is composed of a light and greedy flavour. The basic ingredients are: green salad, cucumber, tomato, radish, pepper. In a traditional way, the fattouche salad is accompanied by yeast bread called pita bread. This one is based on vinaigrette which is prepared with olive oil, wine vinegar, garlic and a special Lebanese spice called sumac. This salad is a real delight and has a pleasant scent.
Eggplant caviar with tahini
As its name suggests, the eggplant is the basis of this recipe. This dish is very simple to prepare. Just grill the eggplants. After removing the blackened skin of this vegetable, it must be blended by adding the tahini sauce. To enhance the taste, seasonings are used such as mint leaves, garlic. Eggplant caviar has a particularly smoky taste. It is ideal for people who like vegetables on the barbecue. Thus, this aubergine caviar dish is made for those who love vegetarian cuisine.