Saturday, June 16, 2007

Another one of Anne's makloobas

If I am not mistaken ma'aluba or maqluba is Arabic for upside down. The idea is to cook the rice, the spices and the vegetables with the pieces of meat, poultry or fish on top in one big pot and when it is ready, you serve this on a broad dish. How to pass the stew onto the dish? Well, you put the dish, facing down, on top of the pan and turn the whole thing upside down. Thus the dish will be put on the table with the meat buried under a pile of rice and vegetables.

I don't mess around with this way of serving, but I do like to cook all of these types of ingredients in one pan, for it gives a very tasty stew. I like to vary with all types of ingredients. A large variety of vegetables and spices are at my disposal and I choose regarding the season. In stead of rice, or together with rice one can add lentils or other legumes, one can take couscous, qinoa and so on. Mostly I cook with chicken, but all sorts of meat, poultry and fish are fit for the stew. Here is how I made my maklooba today:

5 drum sticks with the skin removed
1 table spoon of olive oil
3 tea spoons turmeric
1 tea spoon ground cumin
1 tea spoon ground coriander
half a tea spoon cinnamon
8 stems of blanched celery
half a teaspoon squeezed ginger
5 cloves of garlic
two hands of fresh parsley
1 cup of rice
1 table spoon qinoa
half a cup of red lentils
2 courgettes

Put in the oil, the cumin and one teaspoon of turmeric on low heat. Stir fry until the oil gets the color of the spices and then add the celery. Stir. Add Chicken with 1 tea spoon turmeric and ginger. Stir. Add rice and garlic and salt. Stir. Add, courgette, qinoa and lentils. Stir. Add three cups of hot water, turmeric, coriander and cinnamon and parsley. Cook until the rice is ready. Add a bit of hot water if the stew turns too dry and begins to stick to the bottom of the pan.

Itamar ate the stew in a pita.

Astrology - In Our Time

This week's In Our Time started with an elegant quote from Shakespeare:
In Act I Scene II of King Lear, the ne’er do well Edmund steps forward and rails at the weakness and cynicism of his fellow men:
This is the excellent foppery of the world, that, when we are sick in fortune, - often the surfeit of our own behaviour, - we make guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and the stars: as if we were villains by necessity.

The effort was supposed to be to map the rise and fall of astrology. Its rise during the renaissance, with the works of Ptolemy and Abu Ma’shar and its fall -- when? This is where the shows turns really funny. Melvyn Bragg is intent on letting astrology fall. Surely it was after Copernicus? No! With Newton? No! Guest Lauren Kassell seemed to be defending astrology as a system until today. But surely astrology is no longer a subject at the university? Still it is being studied and reworked.

Were there secret believers among the guests? What a pity, once more, this podcast cannot go on for twice the time span.