mujadarra                                                                                                    mujaddara

Although I confess I had never heard about this dish until my son waxed lyrical about it and urged me to add it to my vegetarian repertoire (I think I have already mentioned I have more or less dropped meat from my diet ), it is apparently very popular in the Arab world. It’s a one pot dish made with lentils, rice and caramelized onions as a base. It’s great to make as it’s a complete meal : it contains proteins, carbohydrates and vegetables. And it’s dead simple as well as being cheap, filling and surprisingly very tasty. What more can anyone want? I have seen different spellings of it as well as different recipes on line. What I am blogging is a combination of what I’ve found. It worked for me but feel free to experiment with spices and herbs. My son’s recipe for example was a bit simpler than the one I ended up making. And by the way, isn’t it nice when one gets ideas of things to cook from her own son? I must have brought him up well then… :-) By the way it’s nice served with a dollop of Greek yoghurt.

INGREDIENTS (for 4 people)

1 cup of brown lentils (the ones that don’t require soaking)- roughly 200 gr.

1 cup brown rice

2 red onions, sliced

1 tspoon cumin seeds

1/2 tspoon cracked black pepper

1/2-1  teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon mild cayenne pepper

1 courgette, cut in ribbons or thin batons

2 tbspoons toasted pine kernels

chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 oz. butter


1 level tablespoon sugar

a few dollops of Greek yoghurt (optional)


In a large pot/wok put oil and butter. Heat up and then add the cumin seeds and the cracked black pepper. Fry for a minute. Add the sliced onions and the sugar as well as some salt and gently shallow fry for approx. 15 minutes. Meanwhile boil the lentils and the rice in two separate pans until nearly cooked but still “al dente”. When the onions are translucent and semi caramelized add the other spices, the courgette and the cooked lentils and rice. Season, add half a cup of water, bring to a simmer and cook for another 10 minutes until all the water has been absorbed. Sprinkle the parsley and the toasted pine kernels on top before serving.

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