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Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Arabic Breakfast Ice Cream Cone! - A Crispy Tonir Lavash Ice Cream Cone filled with Kufta Meatball, Mint Eggs and Warm Harissa Chard Salad topped with Honey Yogurt and Pickled Lemon!
A very modern Las Vegas style ice cream cone presentation of classic Arabic, Persian and Moroccan brunch food!
Have you ever opened the refrigerator door and then stare at a small portion of ground beef sitting there and wondered what to cook with such a small amount of burger? I opened the refrigerator door yesterday about ten times and each time I pondered over what to do with that small amount of ground beef. After opening the fridge door late at night for the last time, an idea finally came to mind!
I needed to cook a few items like yogurt and ground beef that ended up being extra after cooking a couple of Lebanese style recipes yesterday. I had a big bag of Swiss Chard that the chef school gave me. I had one tomato that was very ripe. I had an un-toasted fresh tonir lavash bread in the freezer. I have never been the kind of chef that allows food to spoil.
Many times, I research old traditional recipes or create new recipes, just to use a few odd ingredients to make a nice plate of food and to not let the food go to waste. Many chefs do not think along those lines and they simply throw small amounts of odds and ends into the trash. That is a terrible waste! Make the best with the odds and ends that you have and the food cost will go down!
The tonir lavash ice cream cone shape was easy to make. Lavash bread does not take much time to become crisp in an oven. I have posted several kufta, kofta and kefta meatball recipes in my blog. Lebanese dried mint eggs were a recent recipe that I posted. Honey flavored goats milk yogurt was part of a few recipes in the past. I had a jar of Persian pickled lemons on hand. I made the Moroccan style warm chard salad with the same techniques that were used to make the Moroccan cooked egg plant salad recipe one year ago, but the chard leaves were left whole, instead of being minced.
When making the honey yogurt topping, it is important for the yogurt to be a thick pourable consistency. The effect of the yogurt on this presentation should be that of ice cream melting on top of an ice cream cone on a hot day! That is a really cool effect!
This entree can be presented vertically as an ice cream cone. The ice cream cone can be eaten on a plate or it can be eaten by holding it with one hand like a breakfast sandwich. Or, ahem! An Arabic breakfast ice cream cone!
Kufta Spice Mixture Recipe:
It is much cheaper to buy kufta spice mix pre-made and it is a very accurate flavored spice mixture. My kuftah spice mixture recipe is very basic and it is written by proportions. Kufta can be spelled kefta, kuftah, kafta, kofta, keftes, kifte and about one hundred other ways! There are subtle differences in the spice mixture from region to region and from family to family.
Here is the basic proportions for a kaftah spice mixture:
2 parts cinnamon
1 part allspice
1 part cumin
1 part coriander
1 part mild red chile powder
1/2 part black pepper
1/4 part mace
A small portion of finely ground toasted sesame seed is an optional ingredient.
Sea salt is sometimes added, but the salt is traditionally used as a separate seasoning and is not part of a kufta spice mixture.
Simply mix the dry kufta spice mix ingredients together.
By using proportions for the recipe, you can make a small batch or a large batch of the kufta spice mix. Any leftover kufta spice mix can be saved for later recipes.
Beef Kufta Meatball Recipe:
Place 4 1/2 to 5 ounces of lean ground beef into a mixing bowl.
Add 1 minced clove of garlic.
Add 1 tablespoon of finely minced onion.
Add 1 pinch of marjoram.
Add 1 pinch of turmeric.
Add 1 pinch of Persian oregano.
Add sea salt.
Add 1 tablespoon of the kufta spice mixture.
Thoroughly mix the ingredients together.
Roll the ground beef mixture into a large round meatball shape.
Brush a small roasting pan lightly with vegetable oil.
Place the kufta meatball on the roasting pan.
Bake in a 325 degree oven, till the kufta meatball is fully cooked.
The rest of the ingredients can be made while the kufta is baking.
Tonir Lavash Ice Cream Cone:
Keep a picture in mind of the size of the kufta meatball. The opening on the top of the ice cream cone must be big enough for the kufta meatball to fit into!
I used a pre-made soft par baked sheet of tonir lavash that I purchased at a mediterranean market. The tonir lavash was roasted yet soft and it was not toasted crisp. You can make your own tonir lavash, even though I have not posted a recipe as of yet. There are plenty of recipes for tonir lavash in books and on the internet, because tonir lavash was the very first lavash ever made!
To form the cone, have these items ready:
- Egg wash.
- 3 food safe twist tie wires that are about 10" long. (I used 3 bands made from aluminum foil.)
- 1 piece of 6"x6" parchment paper.
- 1 piece of 10"x10" parchment paper.
Roll a 12"x 15" sheet of par baked soft tonir lavash into a long cone shape, with one open end.
Trim the top of the cone with kitchen shears or a knife, so that it looks even.
Adjust the top opening of the cone, so that it is slightly larger than the meatball.
Hold the top opening in place, by pinching with the thumb and finger.
Trim the excess lavash off the flap of the cone with kitchen shears.
Brush the edge of the flap with egg wash.
Crush the 6"x6" parchment paper into a ball shape and drop it inside of the cone.
Do the same with the larger piece of parchment paper, but make sure the larger paper wad seats in the upper middle part of the cone.
Use one hand to tie the cone shut at three evenly spaced locations on the cone. Place these wire retaining bands on the small lower end of the cone, the middle and the upper end of the lavash cone.
The cone should now retain it's shape!
Place the tonir lavash ice cream cone on a rack in the 325 degree oven that the kufta meatball is baking in.
Bake till the tonir lavash cone becomes toasted crisp.
Allow the cone to cool.
Use tongs to carefully remove the parchment paper wads from inside the cone.
Untie the retaining wires.
Viola! A crisp tonir lavash ice cream cone shape!
Set the cone aside where it cannot be damaged!
Moroccan Style Warm Cooked Harissa Chard Salad:
Heat a saute pan over medium heat.
Add 1 small splash of olive oil.
Add 1 minced clove of garlic.
Add 1/2 teaspoon of minced ginger.
Add 1 small handful of chopped onion.
Saute till the onions almost turn clear in color.
Add 4 medium size rinsed, towel dried, trimmed Swiss Chard leaves.
Toss the chard in the pan, till it wilts.
Add 1/2 of a chopped Roma tomato.
Add sea salt and black pepper.
Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of harissa paste.
Add 1/4 cup of water.
Toss the ingredients together.
Simmer till nearly all of the liquid has evaporated.
Keep the Moroccan cooked harissa chard salad warm on a stove top.
Lebanese Dried Mint Egg:
Wait till the kufta meatball is ready, before making the eggs!
Place 1 egg into a mixing bowl.
Add 3 pinches of dried mint.
Add 1 pinch of sea salt and black pepper.
Whisk the ingredients together.
Heat a non-stick saute pan over medium/medium low heat.
Add 1 pat of unsalted butter.
Add the egg mixture.
Use a rubber spatula to scramble the eggs, till they are soft and fully cooked.
Keep the eggs warm on a stove top.
Place 4 ounces of goats milk yogurt into a small bowl.
Add 1 tablespoon of honey.
Add 1 small pinch of turmeric.
Stir the ingredients together.
Add a few drops of water at a time, while stirring, till the yogurt sauce becomes the consistency of thick cream or thick melted ice cream.
Set the honey yogurt sauce aside.
Place the finished kufta meatball on a plate to rest for 2 minutes.
Pat any excess grease off of the kufta meatball with a dry towel.
Hold the tonir lavash cone with one hand.
Use a small spoon to gently load the Moroccan warm harissa chard salad into the cone, but do not forcefully press the salad into the cone. Gently set the salad in place!
Use a small spoon to place the mint eggs into the cone. Gently press the eggs into the cone, so they form a seat for the kufta meatball.
Place the kufta meatball on top of the eggs in the cone and expose the meatball, so that it looks like the top of a scoop of ice cream sitting on an ice cream cone!
Place the cone into either a wire ice cream cone holder or into a stemmed goblet. The cone must fit snuggly in the rack or glass, so that it does not wobble! The cone will be top heavy, so take care!
Cut a slit on top of the kufta meat ball, for the pickled lemon slice.
Cut 1 thin slice of Persian pickled lemon.
Open the slit on the meatball and insert the pickled lemon slice.
Generously spoon the honey yogurt sauce over the meatball and allow some of the sauce to run down the cone, so the honey yogurt sauce creates the illusion of melting ice cream!
Serve before the ice cream cone melts! Ha! Ha! Ha! Just joking!
"Hey! Something really smells great! Where is that wonderful aroma coming from? It cannot possibly be coming from that guy's ice cream cone over there! I'm getting so hungry from the nice aroma of kufta meatballs in the air!" Ha! Ha! Ha! That is a possible innocent bystander's remark!
The savory aroma of this melting Arabic Breakfast Ice Cream Cone is mouth watering! I really cannot believe that I just described an ice cream cone as having a savory aroma! I must be crazy or sometink! Enjoy this nice Las Vegas style modern Arabic breakfast creation of mine. It will put a smile on a face, just like an ice cream cone does! Yum! ... Shawna