Minnie’s recipes: the truth about my family’s Syrian cooking

Minnie <3 (far right in the picture on the left)

Friday I posted my family’s Syrian kidney bean salad recipe. Fati, of fati’s recipes (you’re not supposed to capitalize the f), commented she had never seen that recipe before…and she is FROM Syria! Sure enough, I googled the recipe and only one website came up with that same recipe. My blog. Seemed curious to me.

I called Tete Saturday morning to inquire, and I was surprised by her answer. “My mom probably just put things together. She came here when she was 17, she was married at 14 and didn’t have her parents or anyone to teach her.” No wonder our fattoush is different, and I also did some googling for a Syrian macaroni recipe and found not a single thing like Tete’s. Of course, I have to say…I definitely prefer my family’s fattoush. I haven’t had the macaroni in years, since it’s one of the most non-vegan foods Tete makes, but I remember how it tastes. It’s delicious. And all our recipes were made by a genuine Syrian woman, so they are still Syrian recipes, right? Whenever I post them from now on, I’ll be sure to call them “Minnie’s Syrian whatever” to give credit to my great grandmother. And one day I’m going to veganize her macaroni recipe!

0 thoughts on “Minnie’s recipes: the truth about my family’s Syrian cooking

  1. The macaroni is one of my favorite things, but I’m surprised you thought it was authentic. Doesn’t make it any less delicious!

    • I didn’t think Syrians in Syria were slicing blocks of American cheese over their lamb-filled macaroni, but I also didn’t think The Other Tete was the only person in the world to use that recipe!

  2. The other tete [Minnie} was not only an incredible cook but an incredible woman who shared her history with me! I remember long afternoons spent playing Bridge with her and your Aunt Mary and Uncle Bill complete with stories of the old country.. The snacks were fabulous! “Eat honey, eat!” No matter how much you ate she wanted you to eat more! She was awesome!

  3. use Daiya! we have a great vegan restaurant here in PHX called Green, and they do a helluva job making meat dishes meatless through creative use of tofu and TVP… so yummy, but my question is: why make it look like meat if its not?? hahaha ill never get it….

    • The cheese is the easy part, it’s the lamb I’d have trouble with, making it taste the same. I think trying to recreate the look, taste & texture is mostly a comfort thing.

        • That’s one of my main reasons for giving it up…er, maybe not so much because of animal “rights” but because I don’t need to kill animals for food, so I won’t, ya know? But anyway, I always liked the taste of it, and even the look of it if it’s cooked (raw, not so much).
          But there are some hardcore vegans who won’t eat anything resembling meat, or wear fake fur or leather. I’m just not that hardcore 🙂

      • Haha, well, if the tofu is pink and bloody I’ll stay away from it, but if it just looks like a piece of cooked meat…meh.

  4. Awh this is darling 🙂
    I suppose recipes with a Syrian heritage can be called Syrian 😉 Adding Minnie in honour of your tete is wonderful though 🙂 Glad your googling/calling tete helped you solve your little mystery! 😉

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