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History & Heritage


Maqlouba: an upside down dish from Palestine

Do you like rich, satisfying comfort food? Then Maqluba is for you! This upside-down rice cake, popular in the Middle East, layers ultra-gourmet ingredients and promises to impress your friends, as it is visually beautiful. A traditional dish, deliciously flavored with spices, here is the recipe.

The origins and ingredients of maqluba

The name “maqlouba” literally means “upside down” in Arabic. And this is the particularity of this Palestinian dish! Inimitable, this dish consists in assembling the ingredients upside down, then turning the whole thing upside down at the time of serving. Eggplant, fried onions, potatoes, rice, and lamb form, one after the other, magnificent layers where the aromas are released and harmonize.

A tasty dish, whose recipe has spread to Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan in different versions. The ingredients can vary and the order of the layers can be improvised. Whatever, maqlouba lets your creativity do the talking!

The secrets of preparation

To prepare your maqlouba, count one hour of preparation and one hour and a half of cooking. Are you ready? Let’s go! In a stewpot, place the pieces of lamb, onions, garlic and spices (cardamom, cinnamon, cumin). Add water and simmer for about 20 minutes.

Take advantage of this cooking time to fry slices of eggplant and potatoes on high heat, and also to soak your rice.

When the meat is cooked, keep the broth and start assembling. In a round pan, place the eggplant slices on the bottom, bringing them up to the edges of the pan. Then continue with the potatoes, grilled onions, meat and raw rice. Take the broth and sprinkle your assembly.

Cover the dish with aluminium foil and bake for about 20 minutes. Wait until the dish is lukewarm before removing it from the pan. Decorate with parsley, pomegranate, and pine nuts if desired.

All that is left to do now is taste & enjoy!

See also

Chorba, a comforting soup from the Maghreb perfect for the cold weather

Published on 20 April 2023