My Global Food Challenge

Algeria (2)

Lahm lhalou (Algeria)

“Lahm lhalou, Arabic for “sweet meat,” is a very popular dish in Algeria, especially during the month of Ramadan. The daylong fast is broken first with dates, then with mouthfuls of this unctuous and fragrant dish of tender lamb simmered with sweet fruits.  Normally, no salt is added to the dish so as not to cause thirst during the next day’s fast. But you can add a little if you like. Other common spellings: l’ham lhalou; el ham lalou.”

Yield:  4 – 6 servings


2 lbs stewing lamb, cubed
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ cup oil or butter
2 cups water
A few strands saffron (optional)
1 cup prunes
¼ cup raisins
¼ cup sugar
1-2 tbsps orange blossom water (optional)
½ cup blanched, sliced almonds, toasted


In a large bowl, mix together the lamb, cinnamon, turmeric and ginger. Heat the oil or butter in a large pot over medium-high flame and brown the lamb in batches, removing each batch to a plate before adding the next.

Return all the browned meat to the pot and add the water and saffron. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 45 minutes, or until the meat starts to get tender.

While the meat is simmering, cover the prunes and raisins with hot water and set aside to let them plump up for at least 30 minutes.

After the meat has been simmering for 45 minutes, drain the fruit and add it to the meat along with the sugar and the orange blossom water. Add a little more water if needed and simmer for another 30-40 minutes.

Garnish with toasted almonds and serve with couscous, khoubz araby or rice.

Variations:  Use dried apricots instead of prunes. Experiment with different kinds of dried fruit for different flavors.  Beef can be substituted for the lamb.  The orange blossom water can be omitted, but it really adds a beautiful fragrance to the dish. It can be found in many Middle Eastern or Latino markets.

Link to My Post on Algeria:

Cuisine:  Algerian

Main Ingredient:  Lamb

Algerian Cucumber Salad (Algeria)

“Posted for the Zaar World Tour. A yummy salad!”


1 large cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, thinly sliced
1⁄2 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, cut in half lengthwise
2 tablespoons sweet onions, chopped
1⁄3 cup green olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
5 fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
1⁄2 teaspoon paprika
1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 1⁄2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
fresh ground black pepper


Toss the cucumber in a salad bowl with the red pepper, onions, olives, mint, and parsley.

Add the cilantro, paprika, olive oil, and vinegar, season with salt and pepper, toss again, and serve. Enjoy!

Link to My Post on Algeria:

Cuisine:  Algerian

Main Ingredient:  Cucumber

File:Algeria in Africa (-mini map -rivers).svg

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