mezze table

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Main dish
8 People
  Pita; whole or wedges
  Paperthin Lavash; whole or wedges
  Olives, black
  Cheese; goat and/or yogurt
  Herbs, fresh; mint, chervil, cilantro, tarragon, & dill
Dips; or sauces
  Baked Bulgur Patties
Bread; filled or flavored
Meats, grilled; or other substantial dishes
  Bulgur Bread
  Paperthin Lavash
  Bedouin Barley Bread
  Fenugreek Corn Bread
  Moroccan Anise Bread
  Afghan Homestyle Naan
  Afghan Snowshoe Naan
  Pebbled Persian Bread
  Uighur Nan with Cumin & Onio
  Lamb and Tomato Breads
  Thyme Bread
  Olive Salad
  Bread Salad
  Chickpea Salad with Spearmin
  Sweet Onion Salad
  Grilled Vegetable Salad
  Hazelnut Spice Blend
  Thyme and Sesame Blend
  Pomegranate and Walnut Sauce
  Grilled Marinated Chicken
  Baked Bulgur Patties Stuffed
  Marinated Lamb Kebabs
  Chicken Street Kebabs
  Georgian Walnut Sauce Casser









Mezze, maza, meze, mezeler, mezedes, mezza, mezethakia, meza, al mezah: There are as many different names for mezze as there are languages along the eastern rim of the Mediterranean, and there are as many different mezze dishes as there are cooks to invent them.

Mezze is a way of eating; as with tapas or antipasti, almost anything that is small and tasty qualifies as a mezze dish, even main dishes if they can be served in small portions. Mezze dishes are often served as hors d'oeuvres to accompany drinks, or set out as a first course. But when served with plenty of fresh warm flatbreads, even the most humble array can instantly become a meal. And the mezze table is one of the all-time great ways of giving bread a central role in a meal, whether a simple home-style supper or a dazzling festive spread.

A basic mezze meal can be as simple as a basket of warm pita, a plate of fresh herbs, another of feta cheese or yogurt cheese, a dish of olives, and a pitcher of iced water. Add a dip or salsa, a salad or two, and a grill such as Grilled Marinated Chicken, and a simple light meal becomes a more elaborate dinner.

Keep in mind that whatever is served should be easy to pick up or to eat with flatbreads. Place all the breads and dishes on the table at the same time. There are no courses in a mezze meal, no rules about what must be eaten first and what later. Think of a long summer night on the Mediterranean with plenty of time to eat, to talk, and to eat some more. A mezze meal should be as informal and relaxing as it is delicious.

To give a mezze meal the status of a mezze feast, simply increase the number and variety of dishes, including perhaps a few heartier choices like kebabs or one or two bean dishes. When making your selections about what to serve, think also about how the table will be arranged, about colors and shapes, contrasts and complements.

Place a rich red salsa beside a pale cream-colored dip, a white feta next to the black olives, an orange or a carrot salat near a plate of fresh green herbs.

Nutritional information per serving: xx calories, xx gm protein, xx mg cholesterol, xx gm carbohydrate, xx mg sodium, x.x gm fiber, xx gm fat ( x gm sat, x gm mono, x gm poly), x.x mg iron, xx mg calcium, x% of calories from fat.

Tyops courtesy of Sylvia Steiger, SylviaRN (at) CompuServe (dot) com

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