First Do No Harm

Salat Medbucha (cooked salad)

Ingredients (as always, as organic as possible)

3 or 4 Green (or red or yellow) Peppers

3 or 4 (or 5) Jalapeño Peppers
1/3 cup Olive Oil

2 - 3 Pounds Roma Tomatoes
1 tsp Celtic Sea Salt
1 clove Garlic (minced)
2 Tbl Honey (or Erythritol)
1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tbl Paprika
Cayenne Pepper (to taste)

 

This recipe takes a long time to prepare. In Morocco, the Jews spend all day Friday cooking for the Sabbath meal, which is that night. This is one of the cooked salads they make, refrigerate, and serve cold. For you Americans on the go, it's best to make this while you're preparing lunch or dinner (or both) in your spare time, then let it cook down while you're eating dinner (stir once in a while just to check up on it) then cool it overnight and serve the next day.

You should note the lack of spices in this dish because you are doing everything you can to bring out the flavor of the tomatoes. And since I am posting this during the harvest season, I want you to use freshly picked, locally grown, Roma tomatoes. You can substitute cans of diced tomatoes, but be sure to buy organic or you'll get BPA in your food. Most organic brands coat their cans so you don't have to worry about BPA.

First you have to roast the peppers to remove their skins. One method is to put then in cookie pans (you can lay down a layer of foil) and bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees, then turn them with tongs and do the other side for 20 minutes. You can also broil, but you have to be close by to monitor and turn often. What you want is to loosen the skin so that you can peal it away, open them up, toss out the seeds (you'll have to do some scraping). Once that's done to all of the peppers, chop them up good and add to your tomatoes (don't worry, you'll see that they're already simmering below).

Once you've started roasting the peppers, start a big pot boiling and wash the tomatoes. Once the water is boiling, add the tomatoes and set the clock for one minute. We're just blanching them. When the clock goes off, drain the water. Now go check on those peppers.

Now comes the fun part, once the tomatoes have cooled to the touch, you're going to pinch off the head of the tomato with your thumbnail and from the other end squeeze the skin so that the tomato meat falls into the pot. You will skin every tomato like this until you've got a big batch of naked tomatoes with NO extra water. Add the salt, honey (erythritol), and minced garlic, and start simmering the tomatoes. You are going to simmer them down till all the juice is gone and you have a very thick paste.

When your peppers are ready, chop them up well and add them. Chop up your jalapeno pepper finely and set aside.

Now go eat because it will take about an hour and a half to cook down slowly. Never too hot. You don't want to burn this. Just let it simmer, check and stir often enough.

About a half hour before the sauce is cooked down thickly, you'll want put the olive oil in a pan, add the jalapeno peppers and the paprika and fry it all up stirring all the while. When the jalapeno peppers are nice and soft, add that entire pan to the mixture and stir. Keep simmering till it's nice and thick. You will know when the sauce is done because the watery spots that boil up slowly disappear and all you've got is thick sauce. Remove from heat, set aside, and when cool, store in a covered bowl for the next day.

My Jewish friends love to eat this salad by dipping sweet bread in it. Nothing is more decadent than tearing off a piece of sweet bread and dipping it in Salat MedBucha. This bread is quite possibly one of the highest foods on the glycemic load index. I truly believe it's not what you do Saturday night that counts, but what you do the rest of the week, so indulging in this treat isn't all that bad for you. However, that being said, we have created a high protein, low carb, no gluten focaccia bread for you that is just as good for dipping, and much more filling than sweet bread.

You can find that recipe here: Focaccia Bread (Gluten Free) With Sun Dried Tomatoes.


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