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Top 10 Pantry Essentials

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When stocking your Middle eastern pantry, there are a few staples to have on hand. In Western countries, these might be like canned soup, bread, and milk. In the Middle East, ingredients vary, and so will your pantry. Need some help finding ingredients? Read "How to Find Middle Eastern Ingredients" for some great tips!

1. Bulghur Cracked Wheat

Bulghur or cracked wheat is commonly used in many Middle Eastern dishes. It is wheat with its husk removes and then steamed and crushed. It comes in three different grains - coarse, medium and fine. I always keep medium on hand in my pantry.

2. Canned Chickpeas

If you don't have time to soak chick peas for falafel or hummus, canned chick peas are acceptable. These are great to have around because they are so commonly used in Middle Eastern cooking.

3. Hot Red Pepper Sauce

If you like food on the spicy side, this red pepper sauce is perfect for you! Use it to dip pita, or mix with olive oil for a sauce. It is also great for labneh.

5. Zatter, z'hatar or zahatar

This seasoning never ceases to amaze me with it's versatility. Sprinkle it on any meat to make it savory and tender, or mix it with olive oil and spread it on pita.

6. Coriander

Coriander is an essential spice.

7. Tumeric

Tumeric is used in meat dihes as a rub or marinade.

8. Olive Oil

Olive oil is very common and is a must habe for Middle Eastern cooking.

9. Wheat Flour

Wheat flour is good to have on hand for pita bread and many dessert recipes.

10. Tahini

Tahini is great for pita sandwiches and for dips. If you don't have time to make your own, this brand is the perfect substitution.
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