There’s a killer Armenian bakery/deli in Watertown, MA called Eastern Lamejun Bakery. (Three guesses what they specialize in.) At least once a month, we go and stock up — two dozen lamejuns lasts us about three hours after they get home.
I found a meatball soup that is very plain, but by combining it with another soup recipe, it looks close. You may have to recreate some of it from memory:
1 1/2 quarts broth
1/2 cup tomatoes
1/2 cup onions chopped fine
1 pound spinach
Bring the broth to a boil. Fry the onions in butter. Add onions, tomatoes, spinach to the broth.
3/4 pound ground lamb
1/4 cup rice (I assume they mean cooked)
3 small onions, chopped fine (That’s alot of onions! I wonder what onions they mean…tiny boiling onions?)
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 Tablespoon flour
Mix meat, rice, onions, parsley, salt and pepper together and knead. Roll into balls the size of a marble. Spread flour on waxed paper. Roll the meatballs in the flour, then drop them into the boiling broth.
From: TREASURED ARMENIAN RECIPES…PUBLISHED BY THE DETROIT WOMEN’S CHAPTER OF THE ARMENIAN GENERAL BENEVOLENT UNION, INC.
Sorry half Hye, even with my extensive Armenian connections from 41 years in Fresno I don’t have a receipe like what you describe.
Hi! I’m half Armenian too, and I’m looking for a recipe for a meatball soup that my grandma use to make. It had chicken broth and I think spinach in it and lamb meatballs. I think it had rice in it too. Does anyone know what I’m talking about??? The meatballs were not kufta. Please help!
Many thanks for taking the time to post the pilaf instructions. I’ll add your note to my recipe files and give the dish a try. This is very close to a Lebanese version I’ve prepared before.
Unforuntaltely its one of those things that I cant quite get the whole story. 🙂 I can get you close though.
Take your rice (your standard long grain white rice) and wash it to remove some of the starch. Take a small amount(say 10 strands if you were making a cup of rice) of dried spaghetti and break it into 1 inch peices. Fry those pieces in a tablespoon or 2 of lard/shortning until they turn brown(keep an eye or they will burn in a hurry). Dump your washed rice in and cook without water (in the fat) for about 3 minutes or so(keep stiring) now add the proper amount of chicken broth that your rice calls for (typically 2 cups to one cup of rice). Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce to simmer till its done.
That should get you close, I think there is maybe a tablespoon butter added at some point (probably during the chicken broth stage because the water in the butter would be problematic during the frying of the rice stage) Also, don/t use butter to fry the noodles the water in it causes problems (in a pinch you can use veg oil instead).
This goes very well with lamb Shish kabob and the marinade cooked down with peppers and onions.
Do you have your grandmother’s Armenian pilaf recipe, and if so, could you share it?
Johnson City, Tennessee
Hi and thanks for the tips~! I too love stuffed grape leaves…my first experience with such things came from a little old Armenian lady who lived next door to us when I was young..she used to share all her cooking with us..nothing like oven fresh lavosh! Since we have a few Armenian stores here I should be able to find the things you mentioned.
I have to second the Basturma. Especially is you can find the extra spicy one.
Seeing that I’m 1/2 armenian, yes I really do love all the foods you mentioned (nothing like grandmas pilaf…mmmmm 🙂 )Let me give you some suggestions that you have probably never heard of and can try if you can find them: Lahmajun (lamb pizzas, I make these at home), Basturma(cured meat), Sudjukh(cured sausage), Coolinjah (sp?) a pastry-type roll(not for the health nut), Keufta(stuffed meatballs), also I love lamb/rice stuffed grape leaves. If you can find an Armenian store you can get most of these items (and pick up some GOOD peda). happy hunting 🙂
I had the best Armenian lunch today. Every year one of the local Armenian churches (we have a large Armenian population here in Fresno), puts on a "merchant’s lunch".. that you can eat in or get for take out. It consists of Shishkabob cooked over a wood fired grill, pilaf, salad, peda bread (a soft sesame topped bread), cheese boreg (filo pastry filled with cheese and spices), and bourma (like baklava ..filo layered with honey and nuts). Has anyone else had experience with Armenian food?
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