Food News

Slow Food Miami's Lebanese Feast Translated

​So many folks sling the word "feast" around when it really isn't quite fitting, but these Slow Food Miami people seem to truly know how to define the term. On November 18 at 7 p.m. they'll be putting out not 10, nor even 20, but dozens of different types of eats and wines for an all-out eating event that won't be soon forgotten, timed in part to recognize Lebanese Independence Day on the 22nd. Tickets are $125 and you can get them here

Or you can just ask some questions of Hani Khouri, our favorite goat farmer and cheesemaker in the Redland who also serves as Slow Food Miami's farm liaison chair, as he'll be preparing the entire meal. "I prefer to use organic ingredients, so the Lebanese Feast will reflect that," he explains. "The tabbouleh that I prepare is sourced exclusively from the Redland except for the bughul, only because we don't grow wheat here. I use local Sem-Chi rice, local honey and sugar as well as most local tropical fruits. The meats that will be served are sourced from Deep Creek Ranch [in Deland] and are from grass-fed pastured animals."

Since many of you (present company, included) don't speak Lebanese and may not know the finer points of the culture's culinary stars, we thought perhaps we'd share most of the menu with you along with a crude translation of what you'll be indulging in:

First will be passed hors d'oeuvres, including kibbeh, spinach fatyaer, and sheesh tavuk. (Translation: Don't grab too many of those little fried balls of ground meat in crushed wheat with spices, the triangular things, and the chicken on a stick before the meal or you'll ruin your appetite.)

Apps will include lahmbajeeen (breads flatter than your little sister's chest), man a kish jibneh (the closest thing you'll find to pizza), labneh (Lebanese cream cheese--better than that stuff from Philly), fried halloumi (yum, fried cheese!), hommos bi tahini (we think you know what that is), baba ghanouj (that eggplant spread that even eggplant haters like), ful madammas (fava beans [please use the Hannibal voice when saying that for the full effect]), falafel with tahini sauce (those crunchy fried balls in the sesame paste-y stuff), stuffed grape leaves (don't worry--you won't taste grape anything with the rice and meat), and Lebanese eggplant musaka (like lasagne, just spongier).

Your entrée selection comprises shish kababs, kafta kababs (that's ground meat on a stick), fish en croute, more kibbeh, and... yeah, you get the picture.

Then you'll have access to a bunch of breads and five salads, one of which is called saltet el raheb or "monk salad," but we confirmed that no monks will be harmed or served on that night so you'll be good to go.

And to drink? White coffee (that's self-explanatory, no?) and Turkish coffee (translation: this will put hair on your chest, for sure, and you won't need a Red Bull to get home).

And that oughta do it. All proceeds will benefit Slow Food Miami Edible School Gardens and the event's location, slated for a private residence in Coral Gables, will be disclosed after you purchase your tickets.

Follow Short Order on Facebook and Twitter @Short_Order.

KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Riki Altman