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Assembling a mezze platter straight from the Mediterranean

Photos

If you’re having guests over and are planning a more casual gathering with simple snacks and refreshments consider a mezze platter. Similar to Spanish tapas, these small plates from the Middle East and the Balkans can serve as either appetizers or a light meal. 

A mezze platter can be easily put together with little actual cooking required. Keeping fresh ingredients like chickpeas, spinach, grape leaves and eggplants in a refrigerator like the Electrolux NutriFresh range with NutriLight technology helps to enhance their vibrant colours and nutrients. A blender like the Electrolux Powermix Silent, with its 4-winged serrated blades, can also  help create fuss-free silky smooth dips for the platter.

There are eight dishes that are commonly found in a mezze platter – tabouli, baba ghanoush, kibbeh, hummus, sarma, olives, falafels and tzatziki.  The platter is typically served with toasted pita bread.

 

Tabouli

By Alpha
https://www.flickr.com/photos/avlxyz/2476070646

This is a salad made from crushed bulgur wheat, finely chopped parsley, mint, tomato, spring onion, with lemon juice, olive oil and seasonings like za’atar, a Middle Eastern spice blend.

 

Baba ghanoush

By Amber Karnes
https://www.flickr.com/photos/ambernussbaum/1515155676

 

This is a dip or spread made from mashed roasted eggplant. Its preparation varies from region to region, but it is commonly blended with seasonings like tahini, garlic, salt, lemon juice, cumin and chili powder. It is normally dressed with olive oil.

 

Kibbeh

By Robert Judge
https://www.flickr.com/photos/bobjudge/3567306140

Also known as Kofte, this is a fried ground lamb patty shaped like a cigar. Mashed onions, spices and a small amount of bread softened in raki – an anise-flavoured alcoholic drink – are usually mixed into the meat. Kibbeh may also be occasionally served raw.

 

Hummus

By Cyclonebill
https://www.flickr.com/photos/cyclonebill/10963593984

Possibly the most well-known of the eight, this is a smooth dip made from chickpeas, often dressed with olive oil.

 

Sarma

By F_A
https://www.flickr.com/photos/seelensturm/4963524856

Also known as stuffed grape leaves. Sarma consists of rice seasoned with lemon, mint, pepper and sometimes mint lamb wrapped in brined vine leaves, cooked in olive oil.

 

Falafel

By Mr.TinDC
https://www.flickr.com/photos/mr_t_in_dc/4594175554/

A deep-fried ball or patty made from ground chickpeas, fava beans, or both.

 

Olives

By Steve Jurvetson
https://www.flickr.com/photos/jurvetson/454873761

Just break out your favourite olives for the platter.

 

Tzatziki

By Traaf
https://www.flickr.com/photos/traaf/7997220237

 

A refreshing dip made with yogurt, finely-chopped garlic, mint and cucumber.

 

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