Michelle Karam

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1 Box Filo Dough from your frozen food section at your supermarket

¾ lb unsalted butter melted & clarified

2 c. walnuts finely chopped

1/3 cup sugar

½ tsp. cinnamon

 

 

Syrup:

2 cups water

½ cup honey

2 cups sugar

1 tsp. lemon juice

Cinnamon stick

 

DIRECTIONS:

Lay open package of fillo dough and rest your baking pan on it and cut sheets the size of your baking pan. Immediately cover your sheets of fillo with a moist towel to keep the sheets from drying out & cracking. Mix together in a bowl walnuts, sugar & cinnamon.

 

 

Lay 5 sheets of fillo dough in the bottom of the baking pan and brush each layer with the melted butter. (YOU DO NOT NEED TO SOAK THE ENTIRE

 

SHEET-JUST COVER LIGHTLY)

Sprinkle 5 TABLESPOONS of the walnut mixture over the top. Then layer on top of it 10 sheets of fillo dough, only buttering every 3rd one. Continue this process 3 more times, buttering each 3rd time.

Butter top layer generously to cover along the edges.

 

Before baking, score dough into diamonds; brush again generously over each diamond to ensure the fillo will stick when baking.

 

Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. Pull the pan out of the oven after 15 minutes and pour the rest of the warm butter that was remaining over each diamond. Fillo dough will puff up. Bake for an additional 20-30 minutes or until the top is light golden brown. When the pan is out of the oven, hold top with a spatula and tilt it to the side to try to drain any remaining butter.   Leave pan tilted for at least 5 minutes so that as much butter as it can will be removed. (May use some paper towels to soak up)

 

SYRUP:

Add all ingredients together over medium high heat- once it comes to a boil and a syrup is formed, remove cinnamon stick.

 

COOL BAKLAVA.

Syrup may be added to the baklava just prior to serving. If you add it too soon, the baklava will get soft and soggy.

 

You can keep the syrup in the refrigerator to store it.

Armenian Stuffed Bell Peppers

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Stuff it!!!  Most of us were brought up to think that meat and vegetables were cooked separately… side by side so to speak… but if you grew up in our house being that we were from Armenian descent, veggies stuffed with meat or dolmas as we called them were part of the norm.  We stuffed grape leaves, cabbage, eggplant, tomatoes and even peppers. 

Stuffing peppers is actually pretty common in a lot of cultures.  Hungarians, Greeks, Italians and Armenians all have some sort of variation for this recipe. 

The one I’m going to share with you today is an Armenian recipe.  You can actually use this recipe to stuff  just about any vegetable that you like!

Red, Green, Yellow… the color of the pepper doesn’t matter! This is one of those no fail type of recipes… go ahead and try… you can’t ruin it!

 This one is for you Lelo… thanks for writing to me for the recipe! I know grandma would be proud of you! -Michelle Karam of Mediterranean Medley on MCCN

 Stuffed Peppers Ingredients

8 Bell Peppers

1 pound ground beef/turkey/chicken

½ cup long grain rice

½ onion finely chopped

¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 can peeled, petite dice tomatoes

Juice of 1 lemon

½ teaspoon dried mint crushed

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 small garlic clove minced

salt & pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

  • Wash the peppers and cut off the tops & remove seeds. Set aside
  • Mix the meat, rice, onion, parsley, garlic, cayenne, salt & pepper and half of the can of tomatoes in a large mixing bowl.  Combine thoroughly.
  • Stuff the cored peppers with meat- do not stuff all the way to the very top. Leave about ¼ of an inch from the top as the rice will expand while cooking and it will overflow.
  • Arrange the stuffed peppers in a large pot.  Pour the remaining tomatoes over the top.  Add the lemon juice, mint  and a little water so thereis approx 2-3  inches of liquid in the bottom of the pan.
  • Cover and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and allow to simmer, covered, for about 45 min, or until the peppers are tender. 

 OPTIONAL: You may serve with a dollop of yogurt or Lebni (Armenian style yogurt- it has a thicker consistency than plain yogurt) on the side

See Michelle’s Recipe:  Mediterranean Fish

What MCCN HAS To Offer

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In a short period of time you have made MCCN one of the most popular sources for multi-cultural cooking options.  Maybe you just visit us for the recipes but there is so much more to the Multi Cultural Cooking Network including original programs, cultural food history, red carpet coverage, restaurant reviews, dinner and movie reviews.  Check out some of what we have done so far with our year in pictures and we look forward to an exciting 2010 with you!

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Mediterranean Medley: How to Make Hummus

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Michelle Karam hosts Mediterranean Medley.  On her first webisode, she prepares hummus.   Michelle is of Armenian descent and her culture very much influences her passion for cooking.