Daring Cooks January: Mezze

I was so excited when I saw the challenge that Michelle from Veggie Num Nums had for us this month.
Mezze is so great we eat it very regulary here at home. Michelle only wanted us to make fresh pitabread and hummus.
So that left me with a lot of oppertunities to go wild on other dishes to serve on my mezze-party!
I made it a greek mezze with some arab influences and I must say my guests where thrilled with the results.
They ate their tummys full and there was not one little piece left!










In this post I will only share the recipes we were obliged to make for the foodblog event itself.
In the upcoming weeks I will share all the other recipe too of course. (But if I did that right now it would be such a monster post 🙂 )

12 grams of dry yeast
591 grams of lukewarm water
596 grams of all purpose flour
An extra 200 grams of all purpose flour
1 tablespoon of salt
2 tablespoons of olive oil

Take a large bowl and poor in the warm water. Sprinkle the yeast over the water en stir till the yeast is completly dissolved. Now stir in approximatly 300 grams of flour. Stir this mixure well (Michelle told us to stir it a 100 times during 1 minute.) I was a wee bit lazy and let my kitchenrobot do all the work! Its important that you stir the dough in the same direction all the time, this to activate the gluten.
Now put the dough aside for about 10 minutes (but you can let it rest for up to two hours!)

Now sprinkle the salt over the dough and stir in the olive oil. Mix well (again I used my kitchenrobot.) Now it is time to add the rest of the flour. Do this slowly will stiring, so the dough gets the change to take it all in and become a sticky dough. The amount of flour mentioned in the recipe did not do the trick for me, I needed a lot more flour. Thats why I mentioned the extra flour in the ingredients section. It may very well be that you dont need the extra flour or you could just like me need a lot more. A lot has to do with the kind of flour you use. Put the dough on a lightly flour surface and knead it for about 8 to 10 minutes. When you see that your dough is quit runny and not at all a sticky dough, add flour and keep adding till you get that smood and elastic dough we are looking for!
Now clean out your large bowl and grease it in with a little bit of olive oil. Put your dough in the bowl and let it rise for about 1,5 hours in a dry and warm place.

Now preheat the oven on 230 degrees and putt some baking foil on an oven tray.
Gently punch down the dough (that looks like an exploted balloon) and place it on a lightly floured surface.
Divide the dough in half and place the rest of the dough back in the bowl, while we are gonna make pitabreads from the first half!
Divide the piece of dough in 8 pieces and role them out till they are very very thin!  Place the rolled out pita breads on the baking tray ( I did it 3 at a time, but it depends on how large your oven is!) and place them for about 2 to 3 minutes in the oven.
Now watch… cause it is quit amazing to see the pita breads puff up till they look like little bread balloons.

If you like you can season the next batch of pita breads what makes them taste even more delicious! I flavored mine with a little Zathar and some fennel seeds. Delicious!
If you bake the pita breads at diner you can wrap them in a towel to keep them warm till all the breads are baked. Or you can do as I did and bake them in the morning and put them in the toaster a few minutes before serving!

300 grams of chickpeas ( I used tinned chickpeas, because I am a little bit lazy and because I always have them in the cupboard.)
the juice of 2 lemons
3 garlic gloves, peeled and crushed
a little pinch of salt
4 tablespoons of tahini

I drained the chickpeas the night before. To make a good Hummus you need to be sure that all of the liquids are reduced to a absolute minimum. You want to get a creamy hummus that melts in your mouth.
Now puree the drained beans and the garlic in a foodprocessor or use a puree masher.  I added some extra olive oil to get a creamy mixture. (Don’t add to much, you dont want it to go all fat and sticky!)
Now add the tahini to the mixer and stire well.
I added half a tablespoon of harissa to get a little heat in the hummus. But he is very tasty just the way it is or if you like you can add other flavours to it like smoked paprika or some dried fennel seeds. Anything you like will do just fine!

The recipe for the pita bread is based on a recipe from Flatbreads and flavors by Jeffrey Alford.
The recipe for the hummus is based on a recipe from The new book of Middle Eastern Food by Claudia Roden.

3 responses to “Daring Cooks January: Mezze

  1. What a fabulous Mezze spread! I love the serving dish too. Great job on the challenge this time round!

  2. Thank you so much for cooking along with me this month! Your food is just brilliant–everything looks SO delicious. And your presentation is lovely. Your serving dishes are amazing!

  3. Oh, man, I love mezze. And tapas. Do we see a pattern here? Thanks for the recipes. And double thanks for the sources. YUM.

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