Let’s add a touch of the exotic Middle Eastern flair to your dining table! How you ask? By crafting a fabulous Middle Eastern mezze platter, of course! We’re talking about hearty falafels, creamy homemade hummus, and a variety of other delightful nibbles.
This culinary adventure won’t just be a feast for the taste buds, but also a visual spectacle that’ll surely impress your loved ones. So, roll up your sleeves and let’s get started on this colourful ensemble of tastes, textures, and tantalizing flavors.
The heart of any mezze platter is undoubtedly the hummus. This creamy dip made from chickpeas, tahini, olive oil, lemon, and garlic is not only delicious but also quite healthy. This simple yet versatile dish can be tweaked to your preference, making it a surefire crowd-pleaser.
The key to the perfect hummus lies in the quality of your ingredients. Here’s what you’ll need:
Nothing complements the creaminess of hummus better than crispy, flavorful falafels. These golden nuggets of chickpeas, herbs, and spices are a Middle Eastern staple and an essential part of your mezze platter.
Here’s what you’ll need to make about 20 falafels:
Now that your stars of the show – hummus and falafels – are ready, it’s time to assemble the mezze platter.
In addition to the hummus and falafels, you’ll need:
Remember, creating a mezze platter is more of an art than a science. You can add or omit ingredients based on your preferences and dietary requirements. Most importantly, have fun and enjoy the process!
Variety is the spice of life and this rings true when it comes to a mezze platter. With the hummus and falafels ready, you can add a few more items that will tantalize the taste buds and make your platter even more diverse and appealing.
While hummus is the star, you can add other dips to provide a variety of flavors. Baba ganoush, made from roasted eggplant, tahini and garlic, is a popular choice. Tzatziki, a refreshing dip made from yogurt, cucumber, and garlic, is another fantastic addition.
A selection of Middle Eastern cheese like feta and halloumi can add a creamy and salty flavor to your platter. Nuts like almonds, pistachios, and walnuts not only add a crunchy texture but also a nutritional boost.
Fruit brings a sweet contrast to the savory items on the platter. Fresh fruits such as grapes, figs, and dates are traditional choices. Dried fruits like apricots and raisins also work well.
Olives and pickles add tartness, which helps to balance out the rich flavors of the hummus and falafel. Choose a variety of olives – black, green, and stuffed – for an array of flavors. Pickles can include everything from pickled cucumbers to tangy pickled turnips.
The presentation of your mezze platter is almost as important as the flavors it delivers. The visual impact will set the mood and make the food even more appetizing.
Start with a large flat plate or a wooden board. An assortment of small bowls can be used for dips, pickles, and olives. Use a variety of colors and textures to make the platter visually appealing.
Arrange the items in a way that makes it easy for people to reach. Place the dips and bread around the edge of the platter, with the falafels, cheeses, and fruits towards the center.
Use fresh herbs, such as mint or parsley, to garnish and add a pop of color.
Remember to serve the mezze platter at room temperature to ensure the best flavors.
Crafting a Middle Eastern mezze platter is a fun and interactive way to explore and celebrate the rich flavors of the Middle Eastern cuisine. This communal dish is perfect for family gatherings or parties.
Creating your homemade hummus and falafel, and pairing them with a variety of dips, cheeses, fruits, and bread, is not a rigid process. It allows you to express your creativity and cater to your personal preference or dietary needs.
So the next time you’re hosting, ditch the standard party food and blaze a culinary trail across the Middle East with this mesmerizing mezze platter. Enjoy the compliments that are sure to come your way!