Eat This Now: Spinach Fatayer from Forn al-Hara
Dave Lieberman

Eat This Now: Spinach Fatayer from Forn al-Hara

I'd gone to Community in Little Arabia to get a massage at Yoga Stone one night last week, and when I stumbled floppily out of the complex, I was hungry. Across the street, Forn al-Hara, formerly known as Tripoli Pastry, beckoned.

Vegetables. Vegetables are good. We like vegetables. We also have a soft spot for the za'atar and cheese manakeesh, but... no. Vegetables!

Despite the fact that there were half a dozen of them sitting on a tray outside the roaring-hot oven, they set to work, feeding dough through a sheeting machine and finishing it by hand. A mixture of spinach, olive oil and caramelized onions was dropped onto a round flat of pastry, and the dough was pinched up into a triangle.

Yes, despite the fact that it was just a little while before closing, they made these spinach fatayer by hand, baked directly on the deck of the oven, then brushed with butter and set in a pan to brown on top. It took probably 15 minutes from start to finish, during which time I polished off a glass of black tea with mint, but it was well worth the wait.

Hot, iron-rich, slightly sweet, slightly tart... and cheap, too. One of them didn't even make it out of the parking lot. Two of these and one of the aforementioned cheese-and-za'atar flatbreads would be a huge, vegetarian-friendly lunch for under $5.

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