Some of the best dishes in every cuisine in the world has been developed from the creativity of ancient cooks who refused to throw away food that is not fresh either because of poverty orbecause the lack of access to plentiful ingredients.
In the Mediterranean, bread was a basic ingredient that should never be wasted. Cookes used dry and sometimes stale bread to make unique dishes that we still enjoy now. Some wonderful examples include the Italian usage of old bread in their wonderful soups like robellita as well as poor’s man soup. In the Levant, old dry pita bread is used in Fattoush salad and in several Fetat dishes. Fetat is main dish that use dry pita bread as a bottom layer. The bread is then topped with several choices of topping that range from stuffed eggplant, sauteed beef or garbanzo beans. Usually a pomegrante or lemon base sauce is drizzled over the mixture and then topped with tahini or sesame garlic sauce. Toasted pine nuts is sprinkled on top to provide texture and fine presentation.
Garbanzo Bean Fetat
2 loaves dry pita bread
2 16-ounces can garbanzo beans
3 cups plain non-fat yogurt
4 cloves garlic, mashed
1 cup lemon juice
1 cup tahini
1 tablespoon ground cumin
zest of one lemon
salt to taste
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts, optional
1/2 cup pomegrante seeds, optional
-Cut the bread into 1-inch squares. Place the bread in a shallow serving platter.
-To make tahini sauce, whisk yogurt with the tahini, garlic, lemon, lemon zest, cumin and salt.
-When ready to servr, boil the garbanzo beans over the stove. Remove from the stove and spoon the hot garbanzo beans with little boiling water over the bread. Pour the tahini sauce over the garbanzo beans making sure it cover the entire pan. Sprinkle with the pine nuts and the pomegranate. Serve.