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Pioneering Lebanese Winemaker Succumbs

Pioneering Lebanese Winemaker Succumbs


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If you weren't a serious wine-lover, Château Musar probably sounded like a joke the first time you heard about it — a winery in Lebanon? Making pricey, and supposedly really good, wines? Once you tasted Château Musar, though, you'd understand why it commanded the high prices and the respect it got. It was — and is — a complex, elegant, racy wine, reminiscent of something excellent from Provence or the southern Rhône (the grapes, in varying proportions from vintage to vintage, are cabernet sauvignon, grenache, cinsault, carignan, and mourvèdre), but with a spicy earthiness that was very much its own. It also ages well, and has found a place, often in older vintages, on wine lists at some of the best restaurants in England, France, and elsewhere.

Gaston Hochar, who descended from a French family that had come to what is now Lebanon during the Crusades and stayed, studied winemaking in Bordeaux in the 1920s, and in 1930 founded Château Musar in the Beqaa Valley, east of Beirut (This corner of the Middle East is in fact one of the oldest wine-producing areas in the world, with vines first planted by the Phoenicians). Hochar's sons, Ronald and Serge, gradually took over the running of the winery in the late 1950s and early '60s, Ronald attending to the business aspects of the enterprise and Serge supervising the grape-growing and winemaking. Château Musar first attracted international attention after the 1979 Bristol Wine Fair in England, where the 1967 vintage was hailed as "the discovery of the Fair."

Serge became a celebrity in the wine world, attracting attention especially during the Lebanese Civil War in the 1980s, when he had to transport his grapes from his vineyards in the Beqaa to his winery in Ghazir, north of Beirut — in the process, he crossed the so-called Green Line, which separated the Muslims of western Beirut from the Christians to the east. More than one observer cracked that a hint of gunpowder could be detected in Hochar's wines from that era. In 1984, the leading British wine magazine, Decanter, named Hochar their first Man of the Year. He liked to say that wine superseded politics.

The Hochar brothers and their own sons (Ronald's is Ralph, Serge's are Gaston and Marc) continued to maintain the quality and reputation of Château Musar, which is known not just for its signature red wine but for an unusual white made from indigenous varieties called obaideh and merwah, and for a series of younger, less expensive wines, including a superb rosé. Musar is also given credit for having spurred the development of the modern-day Lebanese wine industry; today, such Lebanese labels as Château Kefraya, Château Ksara, Massaya, and Domaine Wardy are found on wine lists all over the world.

On New Year's Eve 2014, on vacation with his family in Acapulco, Hochar died while swimming in the ocean. He was 75.


Wines of War

The harrowing taxi ride from Latakia on Syria’s northern coast ended in frustration. It was mid-September and the Aarida border crossing into northern Lebanon was closed, thanks to Syria's civil war. Cars and trucks jammed the roads in chaos. The small coolers on the cab's back seat held samples of Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet grapes kept fresh with ice packs. They would never reach the lab in Beirut. Something as simple as testing wine grapes for ripeness to determine when harvesters should pick had fallen victim to the unpredictability of a war zone.

“It was never going to be easy,” said Karim Saadé, general manager of the Johnny R. Saadé Family wineries. His family owns two wineries—Château Marsyas in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley and Domaine de Bargylus in Latakia, Syria. Centuries ago, wine was big business in this region, and a few pioneers have tried to resurrect it. The Saadés own the only modern commercial winery in Syria. Now the country's civil war, more than three years old, combined with fighting in Iraq, have made the business downright dangerous.

“It was always a hassle," said Saadé, "the logistics, transportation, delivering merchandise, shipping the wine out. Even before the war, we had to treat our own water and have generators to produce our own electricity. All of the samples for analysis are shipped to Beirut or Bordeaux.”

When Karim and his brother Sandro first embarked on fulfilling their father’s dream of owning a world-class vineyard, their region's local wine tradition, which dates back to the Canaanites and the seafaring Phoenicians, had long dried up. Their vineyard was created from scratch in 2003, after four years of searching for the ideal terroir and buying up small plots from local farmers to form a 30-acre block at nearly 3,000 feet of altitude.

The goal was always to produce premium wines that stood shoulder to shoulder with Bordeaux and the Rhône. Their consultant, famed Bordeaux vintner Stéphane Derenoncourt, still remembers the first time he saw the foothills of Mount Bargylus. “I found it majestic. And I thought, this is where we will make some serious wine,” Derenoncourt told Wine Spectator. “The wines have balance, maturity, freshness and aging potential, with a beautiful aromatic complexity that develops."

“Bargylus is opening the door to the past for all the people who will come later,” said Saadé. “I don’t want to be pretentious, but Bargylus is on the finest tables in London and Paris, and soon we hope to be in the U.S. I hope we can inspire others.”

But since war broke out in the region, the brothers figure the wines of Domaine de Bargylus in Syria must be the world’s most difficult to produce. They stock a two-vintage supply of corks and bottles in case there is an embargo. It can take months to get the necessary official signatures to receive oak barrels from France. Wine takes a circuitous route from Syria to Egypt to Beirut.

The threat of crossfire, bombings and kidnappings make it impossible for the Saadés or Derenoncourt to travel through northern Lebanon and Syria to reach the vineyard. The Saadés run their winery by phone and e-mail from their office in Beirut, while a well-trained, loyal team of employees works onsite.

Syrian wine could become a casualty of the swift, brutal rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which imposes a strict interpretation of shari’a law. Under the Islamist militants, alcohol is forbidden, its production, sale and consumption punishable by lashings and imprisonment.

Until now, Domaine de Bargylus' location in Syrian Pres. Bashar Assad’s stronghold of Latakia offered relative protection. But Latakia is a major port, crucial for supplying oil and natural gas to the international market. In August, fighting broke out as Islamist factions tried to wrestle the village near the winery from Assad’s forces. Ordnance exploded in the vineyards and workers fled for their lives. “Ten days before the white wine harvest, we didn’t even know if we were going to pick,” said Derenoncourt.

The Syrian Army pushed back the militants, restoring relative security to the area, and the winery team brought in the harvest. “I call the last three vintages vins du guerre [wines of war]—and they are very, very good,” said Derenoncourt.

Bargylus' owners have acquired 30 acres of stony soil at high altitudes not far from the city of Latakia.

The instability of the region could eventually threaten another wine region, the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon, an hour east of Beirut. Bekaa is a high-altitude plateau cradled between Lebanon’s interior mountain range and the mountains on its border with Syria. It is the heart of Lebanon’s burgeoning wine country—and a stronghold of Hezbollah. At the same time, the eastern mountains harbor both ISIS and al-Nusrah Front fighters.

A year after planting in Syria, the Saadés planted their first vines in Bekaa Valley. “Bekaa is in a constant state of instability,” said Saadé. “We always have to be cautious.”

At harvest time this year, a group of ISIS fighters came down from the mountains an hour to the north, and fighting broke out. Enologist Joe Said Touma told Wine Spectator he feared every day that the conflict would spread to his family's 123.5-acre Chateau St. Thomas.

Producers of Arak, an anise-flavored spirit distilled from grapes, since 1888, the Touma family has established export markets in the Middle East, America, Canada and Europe, shipping 400,000 bottles of wine and 2 million bottles of Arak. But the war has dissolved markets and thrown up road blocks.

“We can’t export to Syria and it’s very dangerous to export to Jordan by road. It’s risky. If ISIS stops the truck, the driver could be in danger … not to mention, the wine won’t get there,” said Nathalie Touma, director of exports. “To ship to Iraq—big whiskey and Arak drinkers—we ship by sea to Turkey and then by road to Iraq.”

They seem to take the hardships in stride. When their father Said Touma created the family winery in 1990, there were just a few wineries in the country. Now there are more than 40, and official support grows. “The minister of foreign affairs has asked ambassadors to serve Lebanese wines for their events and ceremonies,” said Nathalie.

While the vineyards in Bekaa, just an hour from Beirut, remain accessible, travel to Syria is unthinkable. Neither Derenoncourt nor the Saadés have seen Domaine de Bargylus since March 2011. “Hope keeps you moving forward,” said Karim. “I hope I can go there tomorrow.”


Chess Pie

Chess Pie is very similar to the classic Buttermilk Pie. It's a simple custard pie mostly made from eggs, sugar, and butter (what's not to love!) and typically includes a bit cornmeal for a nice subtle texture. It's wonderful on its own, with a dusting of powdered sugar, or served with fresh fruit.

How did it get it's name?

It's texture is similar to a certain type of European cheesecake and rumor has it that Southerners were mispronouncing "cheese pie" to sound more like chess and that's how the pie got its name!

How do I best store chess pie and how long will it keep?

Chess pie should be stored in the refrigerator. After taking it out of the oven, let it cool at room temperature for a few hours and then place in the refrigerator. This will help prevent the top from cracking. This pie will stay good for about 5 days in the fridge.

Can I add other flavorings?

Chess pie is traditionally only flavored with vanilla, but its simple base pairs well with a lot of different flavors! Add fresh orange juice in place of the vinegar or use coffee or maple extracts in place of the vanilla. Have fun with it!


Al Pastor 101

Heat a skillet with 2 tablespoons of oil over medium high heat. Add garlic and guajillo chilies to the skillet. Cook, stirring often, until fragrant and garlic is lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool 5 minutes.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine oil mixture, cumin, pineapple, pineapple juice, oregano, salt, vinegar, and achiote in a blender. Process until smooth, about 30 seconds.

Place sliced pork in a resealable plastic bag and pour marinade over pork. Seal bag and shake until evenly coated. Chill a minimum of 2 hours or overnight.

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons of oil a heavy cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Working in batches, cook the pork in the skillet slightly charred and cooked through, about 3 minutes.

Serve in warm tortillas topped with onions, cilantro, and fresh pineapple.

Have your taco Tuesdays become a little &hellip predictable? Have you been using the same seasoned ground beef taco recipe for the last, oh, 523 Tuesdays? If so, I suggest changing things up with some Tacos al Pastor. This sweet, spicy, and smoky pork taco is everything.

What is al pastor?

Al pastor is a delicious preparation of pork developed in central Mexico. True al pastor is made with pork that is first marinated in dried chiles, spices, achiote, and pineapple, then grilled on a vertical spit.

It&rsquos typically served on tortillas with pineapple, onions, and cilantro. If tacos al pastor is on the menu, you better believe that&rsquos what I am ordering.

Why is it called al pastor?

As I mentioned earlier, al pastor is from central Mexico. But did you know that it can trace its roots all the way back to Lebanon? In the early 1900s, many Lebanese immigrated to Mexico and brought with them a rich food culture. One of the traditions they brought with them was the method of roasting meat on a vertical spit.

Over time, Mexican shepherds adopted this technique and began preparing strips of marinated pork on vertical spits. This preparation was eventually called &ldquoal pastor,&rdquo which means &ldquoshepherd style.&rdquo

What cut of meat is best for al pastor?

The most traditional cut of pork to use for al pastor is thinly sliced pork shoulder. The fact that it happens to be my favorite cut of pork only further explains why I love al pastor so much. You can also use pork sirloin or pork loin, but be careful as these two cuts are much leaner than pork shoulder and can easily dry out.

Full disclaimer: I did not make this recipe on a vertical spit, because let&rsquos be honest, how many of us have a vertical spit laying around. So I&rsquom not going to claim that this recipe is authentic. But it&rsquos pretty darn close and it&rsquos assuredly delicious.


Roasted Cornish Game Hen Recipe

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

I used fresh rosemary and thyme for these hens, but you can use any herb of your choice. Peel four whole cloves of garlic and cut a lemon in quarters. Pat the hens dry with paper towels. This is important for getting nicely browned, crispy skin.

Use your index finger to carefully loosen the skin on top of the hens, then slip a thin slice of butter under the skin on top of each breast.

Next slip a few fresh herb leaves under the skin.

In each cavity, stuff a quarter of the lemon, a clove of garlic, and a sprig of fresh rosemary and thyme (or herbs of choice).

Rub each hen all over with some extra virgin olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Truss the hens by tying the legs and wings. For a step-by-step visual, you can Google “how to truss a chicken” and multiple videos will come up.

Place the hens on the rack of a roasting pan lined with aluminum foil. Place the hens as far apart from each other as possible to enable the skins to get browned and crispy (I added a fifth hen this time for our dinner guests). Place the hens in the preheated oven and roast for 25 minutes.

In the meantime, combine the chicken broth and white wine in a small bowl. After the hens have roasted for 25 minutes. pour the liquid over the hens, reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F, and continue roasting for another 35 minutes, basting every 8-10 minutes with the juices on the bottom of the pan. This is important to keep the meat juicy and flavorful.

The hens are done when an instant-read thermometer placed in the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees F. Using a meat thermometer is very helpful for getting the best results. You want the chicken to be done but cooking it too long will dry out the meat.

If you want the skins browner, turn off the oven to broil and roast for a couple more minutes, watching closely so the skin doesn’t burn. Carefully remove the hens, pour the juices from the cavities into the roasting pan. Transfer the hens to a warmed platter, remove the trussing string, and tent with aluminum foil to keep warm. Pour the liquid from the roasting pan into a small saucepan and boil for 5 minutes until it is a thin sauce-like consistency. Serve the hens whole per guest or cut them in half lengthwise, placing them cavity side down on each plate, drizzle with the sauce and garnish with a sprig of fresh herb and a slice of lemon. Serve immediately.

For a very different and incredibly delicious roast chicken recipe, be sure to try our Peruvian roasted chicken, Pollo a la Brasa!


Ingredients

  • 2 pounds (1kg) boneless beef chuck roast, cut into 1 1/2–inch steaks, or 3 pounds (1.3kg) bone-in beef short ribs, ribs removed and reserved (see note)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) canola oil
  • 3 large carrots (10 ounces 280g), diced
  • 1 large yellow onion (12 ounces 340g), diced
  • 2 ribs celery (6 ounces 170g), diced
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 3 quarts (3L) homemade or store-bought chicken stock (see note)
  • Sachet of 2 sprigs fresh thyme, 1 bay leaf, and about 5 whole black peppercorns
  • 1 cup pearled barley (7 ounces 200g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon (3ml) Asian fish sauce (optional)
  • Minced fresh parsley, for garnish

An Institution Crumbles : The Pioneer Boulangerie Succumbs to Social, Economic Forces

Once dubbed “Gastroland” by a food critic, the Pioneer Boulangerie restaurant in Santa Monica occupied an entire city block and offered a head-turning array of gourmet eateries under one roof.

It became a city institution, albeit one that sometimes seemed to be suffering an identify crisis.

But on Friday, after 17 years on Main Street, Pioneer Boulangerie closed its doors for good, the victim of a variety of economic and social forces.

“It just got to the point where we couldn’t afford to turn the lights on and open the doors,” said John Garacochea, son of one of the restaurant’s founders.

“There were a lot of factors. The recession . . . a labor-intensive business, the homeless problem. And we used to be unique, until the last few years when all these gourmet food and coffee places opened along Main (Street) . . . and Third Street Promenade.”

Additionally, Garacochea said the state’s new seismic codes required building improvements that would have cost at least $100,000, a figure hard to swallow with a money-losing business.

He said no decisions have been made about future of the property, bordered by Bicknell and Bay streets and owned by John W. Garacochea and his brother, Jay Garacochea, who co-founded the business.

For its faithful patrons, news of the closing came hard.

“I started crying when I heard,” said Leslie Lobel, a regular at Pioneer Boulangerie since it opened. “I was shocked. I came

to try and get our last pies. It was a total Santa Monica institution. It was where families would go for dinner, kids would get their birthday cakes, people would meet for lunch. Where else can you go and spend $2 for a cup of coffee and a roll?”

The massive operation included a full-service bakery, a patio-style cafeteria, a bistro dining room, a deli, an espresso bar, a wine and cheese shop and, at one point, a frozen yogurt machine.

John Garacochea conceded that the numerous eateries were probably “a little too much” for some customers. In retrospect, he said that business may have suffered because “people would just get used to the place and we would change it.”

About 60 employees have lost their jobs with the closing. Some are being offered jobs at the original Pioneer Bakery, where only bread is baked, in Venice, Garacochea said. Another, smaller bakery, replete with all the pastries available at the Pioneer Boulangerie, opened on Montana Avenue and Lincoln Boulevard a few months ago, where it shares space with a Panda Inn.

One of biggest problems Pioneer Boulangerie faced in recent years, Garacochea said, was an influx of “indigents” who would hang around the restaurant, sometimes locking themselves in bathrooms or making off with beer or other products.

“For a while, we had customers calling up daily and saying ‘We’re not eating here anymore because of the homeless,’ ” Garacochea said.

Eventually, a security guard was hired. But Garacochea complained that as a result, what was supposed to be a European, villagelike ambience was replaced with a “prisonlike” atmosphere.

The hard times plaguing Pioneer Boulangerie have been shared by other frustrated merchants on Main Street. The Oar House, another old-time Santa Monica venue, closed about 10 days ago. The owner could not be reached for comment, but neighboring businesses said the business had been struggling to pay for seismic upgrades to the building.

“Businesses all along Main have been struggling,” said Brandon MacNeal, co-chair of the Main Street Merchants’ Assn. “It’s just gotten progressively worse. The city’s interests in developing (Third Street Promenade) really robbed Main of essential resources like diminished police presence the trees get trimmed a third of the time that they do on the Promenade, and there isn’t enough street lighting. It’ll be tough without Boulangerie because they brought a lot of people who would come just to see the place, then shop.”

A Main Street revitalization plan goes before the Santa Monica City Council in January for approval of its funding.

The Garacochea family came to Venice from the French Pyrenees in 1908 to open Pioneer Bakery in the two-story building on Rose Avenue and Fifth Street where it still stands.

The family, which left the village of Les Aldudes with sourdough starter to bake the bread that remains the bakery’s calling card, lived on the building’s second floor, running the bakery on the lower level. Four generations later, the wholesale bakery operation--which includes a new bakery in Oxnard and another planned for the East Coast--distributes bread in 42 states.

The restaurant was John W. Garacochea’s dream, according to his son, who said that his father traveled through Europe for years before deciding to open a European eatery decorated with folkloric Basque art housed in chateau-type architecture.

The restaurant’s heyday, John Garacochea said, was from the late ‘70s through 1989, when it drew a large clientele from North Santa Monica and Pacific Palisades. After that, he said, the restaurant began struggling, sometimes losing money, sometimes breaking even.

“I am depressed,” said Jan Sloane, who made a habit of driving from West Los Angeles for the coffee and bread at the restaurant. “Years and years I’ve come here. I just thought they were remodeling again. They make the best cappuccino here. I’ve been to Starbucks. They’re not as good.”


Baba Ghanoush!

Baba Ghanoush. Don&rsquot tell the cowboys, but this is one of those things in my recipe repertoire that falls under the category It Doesn&rsquot Get Much Better Than This. It&rsquos true. I absolutely love this stuff. Even though the cowboys wouldn&rsquot touch it with a ten foot pole.

I&rsquom happy with the life I&rsquove been given. I love my family. I&rsquom okay with the cow that thinks it&rsquos a dog and sleeps on my porch. I can even make my peace with the flies. Maybe. And I embrace all of the country food I&rsquove had to learn to make in the last decade-plus of my life: fried chicken, chocolate sheet cake, chicken fried steak. So if I want to wig out one day and make a traditional Middle Eastern eggplant spread with a totally funky name, I give myself permission.

Baba Ghanoush is delicious. Made with eggplant that&rsquos been fire roasted (either on a hot grill or under a broiler) to the point of shriveling, it can be served as a side dish. Typically, though, it&rsquos a cold or room temperature spread, served with pita bread or crostini or crusty French bread&hellipor a spoon.


Serge Hochar, Famed Proprietor of Lebanon's Chateau Musar, Dies at 75

Serge Gaston Hochar, the legendary co-owner of Chateau Musar, president of the Lebanese Institut de la Vigne et du Vin, and passionate ambassador for Lebanese wines, died Dec. 31, 2014. Hochar was on a trip to Acapulco, Mexico, with his family to celebrate his recent 75th birthday when he died in a swimming accident.

His absence will be felt by many. He was a popular winemaker, respected internationally for his excellent wines, and a tireless pioneer in winemaking in Lebanon. Even in times of war in his region, he was optimistic, finding humor in daily life.

"Lebanon--since its inception 10,000 years ago--has always had war. It will never be at peace. You have to accept it. I never worry. For the last five years, I've told myself, be happy, be positive, be funny,” he told Wine Spectator in early December, responding to recent incursions by Islamist militants from Syria into the Bekaa Valley, where Musar is located. "Lebanon is more than beautiful. When you are in Lebanon, you feel you are a different person."

Born Nov. 20, 1939, Hochar began working in 1958 at Musar, the Lebanese winery founded by his father, Gaston Hochar, in 1930. Serge worked alongside his father and brother, Ronald. While Ronald focused on marketing and finance, Serge was gradually drawn to winemaking, making his first vintage in 1959.

He studied engineering, then law, at St.-Joseph University in Lebanon, before his desire to produce the best wine possible took him to Bordeaux. There he studied under two of the greatest enologists of the 20th century, Emile Peynaud and Pascale Ribéreau-Gayon. After completing his studies in 1964, Hochar returned to Lebanon and Musar, eventually taking control of the winery in 1974.

Hochar was an early convert to organic grapegrowing, convinced that Musar could produce fruit of exceptional quality without using synthetic chemicals. Musar grows its grapes on 371 acres of mainly gravel and limestone soil in the Bekaa Valley, 25 miles east of Beirut and 3,000 feet above sea level, and in Mount Barouk, around Kefraya and Aana.

“I’ve always felt like I was a philosopher. I did not initially want to make wine, but then I felt I could bring something new to the table and produce completely natural wines. I wanted to make wines that respect nature,” Hochar once told a Lebanese magazine.

While primarily focused on red wine, Chateau Musar also produces white wine from vines that are 100 to 150 years old. In all, the winery produces 58,000 cases a year. It was challenge enough for any winemaker.

Then a year after Hochar took over, the Lebanese Civil War (1975-1990) broke out, and the young winemaker showed his tenacity, refusing to abandon the family operation. "When the war started, I didn't stop making wine. War does not kill yeasts,” he told Wine Spectator. He only lost two vintages, the 1976 and 1984, to the conflict.

At the same time, Hochar knew he had to look for new consumers. Chateau Musar was selling 75 percent of its production to a country now engulfed in war. He shifted toward exports, and within two decades, Chateau Musar was exporting 75 percent of its production.

“Serge Hochar undeniably put Lebanese wines on the international map, being one of the first, if not the only one to tackle exports when other wineries were focused on the local market. His charismatic approach definitely gave our country international exposure,” wrote Karim and Sandro Saadé, owners of Chateaus Marsyas and Bargylus, in an e-mail to Wine Spectator. Hochar was both a friend and mentor. “Sandro actually learned how to decant and serve wine from Serge for the first time when he was 10 or 11 years old.”

American wine consumers also had many opportunities to meet Hochar during visits to the United States, including when he poured at Wine Spectator's Wine Experience on more than one occasion. He was appreciated not only for excellent wine but his insight. “He taught us all to slow down a bit and pay attention to life,” said Catherine Miles, vice president at Musar's U.S. importer, Broadbent Selections.

The success of Chateau Musar acted like a beacon for other wineries in Lebanon which, due to its small size, Hochar believed, needed to focus on low-volume, high-quality wines. After the civil war ended, there were only five wineries left in Lebanon. Hochar was the first representative at the International Alliance of Wine and the Vine (OIV), after Lebanon joined in 1996. A year later, with the support of the OIV, he was the impetus behind the formation of the Union Viticole du Liban (UVL), of which he was a long-serving president. Today, there are 40 wineries in Lebanon. In 2013, the UVL created the Institut de la Vigne et du Vin (National Wine Institute), and Hochar was president.

In addition to his career in wine, Hochar was founder and CEO of a real-estate development company in Lebanon. He is survived by his wife, Tania, two sons, a daughter and seven grandchildren. He worked with his sons Gaston and Marc at Musar, as well as his brother Ronald and nephew Ralph.


Impress Your Entire Household With Joanna Gaines's Deceptively Simple Fatayer Recipe

Ever have those cravings for something warm, salty, and buttery, but aren't quite sure what to make? Joanna Gaines's fatayer can fix that! The recipe, which Gaines made on the first episode of her new cooking show, Magnolia Table, is a classic Lebanese meat pie, and it'll satisfy all of your tastebuds.

While I was initially a little worried that these savory pastries might be too far out of my cooking skills comfort zone, I was surprised just how simple they were to put together. The filling is as easy as sautéing a few ingredients in a pan, and the outer pastry is made from Pillsbury Grands! Southern Homestyle Original Biscuits. And since the biscuits are already portioned, all you have to do is roll them, fill them, and close them. After brushing a little melted butter over the top, they're ready to go in the oven.


The recipe makes 24 fatayer, which correlates roughly to 8-10 servings. Don't worry if you can't eat them all in one night though, as they reheat nicely for a treat throughout the week. And if you're looking to make a full meal out of it, I recommend Gaines's Lebanese Salad as the perfect side dish.


Watch the video: Out of the box - Οινοποίηση. 16112019. ΕΡΤ (May 2022).