Palestine, United Arab Emirates – Lamb Kubba

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by Adelina Aida

This dish is one of the best dishes of Palestine and Arabic cuisine. This is made up of meat and can be cooked as the vegetarian version of the dish. This is cooked by various methods and the most used method is frying. Because meat, when fried, taste very delicious and amazing. It is also known as KIBBEH. This dish is cooked and served in many other dishes as the main complement like kubba rice, kubba-filled bread, etc. It is also served by adding in the sandwiches. It is more like a fried snack or a side dish to complement other dishes on the dining table. This is served along with different sauces like tomato sauce, mayonnaise, chili sauce, etc. When it is served alone, different sauces and salads are served to have crunch by raw salads and dip for moisture and juiciness. The spices of Palestine cuisine are mild, they add just a minimal amount of spices to have exact flavor and never overdo the main ingredient of the dish. The main ingredient can be meat most probably, and vegetables moreover, lentils are also be added. Sometimes, meat with vegetables is a very good combination together.

Meat is added to this dish in the minced form. In this order we can mix few meat options together and also chopped vegetables are also added into this mince like onions, tomatoes, green chilies, corns, spring onions, etc. Spices and then binding ingredients to hold the kubba together like chickpea flour, plain flour with egg, and butter that makes it super moist and juicy. It is a very tricky point when flour is added as to bing the kubba it makes mince dry and then eggs are added as the substitute for softening element.

This dish is a famous snack or appetizer throughout the world. It is a dry kubba meat dish and served with sauce for proper juiciness and moisture and some raw vegetables. Some grilled vegetables like tomatoes and corn are also be served. In different areas, mashed potatoes, white sauce, and grilled vegetables are added together as the KUBA PLATTER and served.

The alternative names of KUBBA are :

  • Koobideh
  • Kubba
  • Kabab
  • Kibbeh
  • Sheftalia
  • Kebabi
  • Kebab Halabi

Kubba is included in other national cuisines but with different names and some different cooking methods like :

  • Palestinian cuisine
  • Lebanese cuisine
  • Omani cuisine
  • Turkish cuisine
  • Persian cuisine
  • Qatari cuisine
  • Iranian cuisine
  • Khaleeji cuisine
  • Bahranian cuisine
  • Arabian Cuisine, etc.

PALESTINIAN CUISINE

Palestinian cuisine is a food that is not even eaten by the people of Palestine but also Jordan, Israel, Refugee camps, nearby areas, etc. This cuisine has the influence of different regions and the diffusion of different cultures. The cuisines that have a great impact on Palestinian cuisine are Turkish cuisine, Arabs, and Persians.

The cooking techniques and ingredients used in dishes are based on the climate and location of that region and also tradition and culture. There are a total of three different regional cuisines of Palestine :

  • West bank
  • Gaza
  • Northern galilee

NORTHERN GALILEE

Lebanese cuisine has a great impact on the Northern side of Palestine cuisine. The dishes and cooking style is very similar to the Lebanese dishes. The special and traditional meal of northern galilee is usually cooked with lamb meat. It can be either roasted lamb or small lamb pieces over the rice. These lamb kubba and many more.

Some traditional dishes of northern galilee :

  • Kubbi neyye
  • Markook
  • Kibbee balls
  • Shish kebs
  • Akkawi chesse, etc.

WEST BANK

Bethlehem area with Beit Jala and Jifna are the areas popular in the west bank. There are some famous dishes of WEST BANK are :

  • Musakhan
  • Casserole
  • Mansaf
  • Jameed

GAZA

Gaza’s cooking style is adopted by the Levant countries and has been influenced by the Mediterranean coast or Middle east. Gaza is the region of seafood. There are many popular dishes of Gaza that are usually cooked by having seafood like fish, prawns, clams, etc in it. There is also a type of Kubba in which fish is used as the main ingredient, fish mince.

Some famous seafood dishes from GAZA :

  • Zibdieh
  • Qidra
  • Fukharit adas
  • Farasheeh, etc.

ETYMOLOGY OF KUBBA

The word Kubba is derived from the Arabic language, KUBBAH is also known as KIBBEH in Levantine Arabic language.

Kibbeh is known as ROUND, DOME shape. This kubba is usually cooked in this circular and round shape so these are named KUBBA. This word is also known by many different names like :

  • Kobideeh
  • Kubba
  • Kibbeh
  • Kibe, etc.

HISTORY

The cuisine of Palestine has a great impact on other international cuisines. There are many aspects, cultures and traditions of another cuisine with cooking methods and techniques and also the ingredients. The impact of different cuisine are following :

  • Syria has impact over the GALILEE part of Palestine.
  • Arabs has intrduced culinary traditions of using ingredients like lamb, olive oil, etc.
  • Cuisine of Ottaman Empire which has incorporated into tradition of Palestine in 1516.

TYPES OF KUBBA/KIBBEH IN PALESTINIAN CUISINE

KIBBE SUMAQIYYE

From the Middle East, there is a total of 17 types of different kibbeh are cooked. From which this kibbeh is cooked by adding SUMAC powder. Sumac is a fruit from a flowering plant that is from the genus RHUS. This is taken from its plant and then dried to form a powder. It has dark reddish-colored powder, used in many dishes of the Middle east.

With Hummus, sumac onions are served, and many more variations.

KIBBE LABANIYEE

Labaniyee is known as YOGURT in Levantine Arabic language. This dish is cooked by hung yogurt that is spiced up with different spices and a thick paste is cooked. This is very tough to cook thick semi-solid consistency batter and convert it into a ball-shaped component.

It is served with :

  • Cherry sauce
  • Pomegranate seeds
  • Lemon juice

KIBBEH NAYYEH

This is cooked by adding raw meat when spiced up with different herbs and vegetables. This is finely minced meat mostly lamb meat shred into the fine thread to serve in this dish. This is mixed with some vegetables that are also finely chopped and some spices.

Kibbeh nayyeh is served by adding different ingredients like :

  • Onions
  • Mint leaves
  • Olive oil
  • Bulgur
  • Garlic sauce, etc.

KUBA HALAB

This is a special meal in which rice crust is prepared and then this meat mince is added over the top in the form of pie to bake it. This is said to be the IRAQI version of the dish KUBBA. In this dish, rice elements give a very nice crust to the dish with lamb spicy mince is very tasty.

KUBBAT SHORBA

This is a dish of kubba dipped into some stew. Stew is cooked by bones of lamb and beef then some spices are added into the stew. This cooked kubba is added to the stew and served with simple rice or as soup.

KUBBI KISHK

Kubbi kishk is a dish in which different ingredients like vegetables are added. It is also known in SYRIA as torpedoes. This dish has various ingredients like :

  • Yogurt
  • Butter
  • Cabbage
  • Courgettes
  • Leeks
  • Celery
  • Lekon juice
  • Garlic, etc.

GARNISHING

Kubba kibbeh is so delicious, but the presentation is an important part of any dish. This is done by adding different colorful vegetables like :

  • Parsely
  • Mint leaves
  • Raw tomatoes slices
  • Boiled eggs slices
  • Green chilies
  • Cilantro

SERVED WITH

They are served with different bread and rice dishes like :

  • Khubz
  • Ka’ak
  • Pita
  • Manakish
  • Shifa
  • Tanur bread

And with dips, sauces, and salads like :

  • Shatta
  • Toum
  • Musakhan
  • Shafiha
  • Tabouli
  • hummus

INGREDIENTS

  1. Lamb mince = 500 grams
  2. Green chilies = 4
  3. Onions = 1 chopped
  4. Tomatoes = 1 chopped
  5. garlic cloves = 8 chopped
  6. Parsely chopped = few leaves
  7. Lemon juice = 4 tbsp
  8. Plain flour = 6 tbsp
  9. Egg = 1
  10. Salt = 1 tbsp
  11. Red pepper = 1/2 tbsp
  12. Sumac = 2 tbsp
  13. Bahārāt = 1 tsp
  14. Caraway = 1 tsp
  15. Oil = for frying

SERVING

  1. Parsely leaves = few
  2. Raw tomatoes slices = 4
  3. Green chilies = 2

COOKING METHOD

  1. In a mixing bowl, add the lamb mince that must be moisture free and have no water content.
  2. Now add chopped onions, garlic, tomatoes, green chilies into the mince and leave it for 10 minutes so the water from vegetables releases into the mince and makes it moistured.
  3. Then add all the dry spices into the mince and mixed well so the spices and mince mixed properly.
  4. Now let this meat mince to marinate in refrigerator for over night so the spices and mince incorporated properly.
  5. Kubba are not too much thick or thinin size and shape must be circular or dome shaped.
  6. Now in a deep pan add oil to fry these kubba.
  7. When the oil is heated enough add these kubba in oil and then low down the heat.
  8. These technique is used to cook the meat completely.
  9. Now when kubba have the brown color remove it from oil and serve.
  10. Enjoy with sauces and salads.

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