Mediterranean Rice Pudding

Dessert, Recipe

When I researched rice pudding, I found that it is made in nearly EVERY country  in the world in some variety. I also discovered that a recipe can vary greatly between people in the same country. Rice pudding was one of my late father’s favorite dishes, and whenever I make it, I am reminded of my dad which makes it extra special for me. :-)

Rice pudding is made from rice and is usually mixed with water or milk. Different variants are used for either desserts or dinners. When used as a dessert, it is commonly combined with a sweetener.  Rice pudding can be boiled or baked, and it can be thick like a pudding or thin like a drink.

Below is a list of the most common ingredients of rice pudding across the world:

  1. rice (all types- long-grain, short grain, basmati, jasmine, etc)
  2. milk (usually a thick milk such as whole, heavy cream or evaporated, etc)
  3. spices (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cardamon, etc)
  4. flavorings (orange blossom water, vanilla, almond, orange, lemon, etc)
  5. sweetener (sugar, honey, brown sugar, etc)

In the US, most rice pudding recipes are based on European immigrants; but more recently, Asian, Middle Eastern and Latin American recipes have become more popular.  Below is my Mediterranean Read the rest of this entry »

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Pomegranate Molasses Recipe

Recipe, Spice


After last week’s post on Muhammara, I received a lot of questions about pomegranate molasses. Pomegranate molasses is made by boiling down pomegranate juice to a tart variety, and it is used in many Mediterranean meals including dips, meats and salads. Pomegranate molasses can be puchased in the ethnic aisle of your local grocery stores and can be found in Mediterranean/Middle Eastern markets.

You can also make it on your own using the recipe below. I prefer to make it on my own because I can determine the sweetness of the molasses.


  • 4 cups pomegranate juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice

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Muhammara or Fire Roasted Red Pepper Dip

Dip, Recipe, Vegetarian

Muhammara is a popular Mediterranean dip that originates from Aleppo, Syria and is eaten by people all over the Mediterranean region. Muhammara means “reddened” in Arabic. The main ingredients are fresh red peppers, walnuts and breadcrumbs. The walnuts are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and make it “heart healthy”. Muhammara is eaten as a dip with bread, as a spread for toast and as a sauce for kebobs, grilled meats and fish. You can garnish it with fresh mint (as pictured). My favorite is to spread it on pita bread.


  • 2 roasted red peppers
  • 6 ounces walnuts, crushed or whole
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate molasses
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes or red chili powder
  • 4 garlic cloves, whole
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • mint, to garnish
  • pita bread, crackers (optional) Read the rest of this entry »

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Healthy Mediterranean Pita Pizza

Diabetes, Recipe, Vegetarian

I was asked by a national organization to begin to write recipes for people with diabetes. I am very honored to do so and have decided my very first recipe will be Healthy Mediterranean Pita Pizza. This meal is so yummy and anyone and everyone will love it (not just those with diabetes).

It only has about 250 calories, 5g fat, 1g saturated fat, 41 g carbohydrate, 3g dietary fiber , 8g protein.

Ingredients: (makes 1-2 pita pizzas)

  • 1 pita bread
  • 1/4 cup tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cucumber, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons hummus
  • 1 tablespoon sliced olives
  • 1 tablespoon crumbled feta cheese

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Spinach Pie or Spinach Borek

Recipe, Vegetarian

Borek is a baked or fried filled pastry. It can be filled with cheese, meat or veggies. For this recipe, I use spinach; it is delicious. It originates from Modern Day Turkey. Borek roll is usually prepared in a large pan and cut into portions after baking or as individual pastries before baking or frying..




  • Borek dough (can get from local Mediterranean grocer) or light easy dough (dough recipe coming soon on
  • 6 cups fresh spinach leaves (~1 bag)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 medium yellow onion chopped
  • 2 small tomatoes chopped (remove seeds)
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sumac
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • vegetable or canola oil for frying

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