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Majitoom

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My favorite Lebanese restaurant has products that they sell retail through a local high end grocer. Their baby ghannooj in the restaurant is incredible. I intensely dislike citric acid, so I've never bought it from the grocer. Last night I did. They somehow captured the wood fire roasted eggplant flavor. Apparently, they do use the eggplants from the restaurant. I do detect the citric acid. Blech. My question is does anyone know what majitoom is? I googled and found nada. The ingredients are "fresh smoked eggplant, tahini, majitoom, citric acid, salt. I'm clueless.

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

asked 5 months ago
23 answers 999 views
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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 5 months ago

Oops..should read "baba" not "baby".

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Maedl

Margie is a trusted home cook immersed in German foodways.

added 5 months ago

I wonder if it may be MSG. I found it mentioned on the site of a Lebanese restaurant, Al Amir in Portland. Whatever it is, you can buy it at Fred Meyers--whatever that is.

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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 5 months ago

Yes, that is where I've had this Baba Ghannooj. I think it's illegal to call msg by another name, but I will look into that.

Fred Meyer is the store in the PNW that carries everything from tomatoes to bath towels to furniture.

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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 5 months ago

Phil you and BerryBaby are right. My friend and her husband went for dinner and asked. It's a spice blend that is named after the person who works in their kitchen and came up with it. It's interesting because I don't detect spices. It all just comes together in deliciousness.

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PHIL

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added 5 months ago

Fred Meyers is a supermarket on the west coast. I asked my Palestinian friend and he had not heard of it but thinks it's some regional spice blend.

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BerryBaby

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added 5 months ago

You may have already done this, but I'd call the restaurant and ask them. I have never heard of that ingredient either, maybe it's a combination of different spices/herbs?

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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 5 months ago

I actually haven't called, but plan to today. I figured if it was a thing, someone here would know. I'll bet you're correct in that it's probably a spice blend.

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PHIL

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added 5 months ago

It is probably some variation of the Lebanese 7 spice blend

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BerryBaby

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added 5 months ago

SusanW, so happy you were able to find out the answer!

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PHIL

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added 5 months ago

yes, but do we know what the secret spice mix is made of?

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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 5 months ago

My friend Dawn was not able to pry the exact spice blend from anyone in the restaurant. She's close enough to them that she's been known to wander back to the kitchen, so I'll just let it remain a mystery. :)

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BerryBaby

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added 5 months ago

It's probably like Kentucky Fried chicken secret recipe. They want to keep it private.

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Nancy

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added 5 months ago

No clue, and I make many Middle Eastern foods.
If the restaurant is willing to put the ingredient list on the package, maybe they'll answer questions about majitoom.
Or maybe you've asked and they're protecting their secret.
Another thought...write to cookbook authors who know Middle East & North Africa and might recognize a (perhaps bad) transliteration...Ana Sortun (Turkey), Claudia Roden (Egypt, originally), Kitty Morse (don't know where), Faye Levy, Clifford A Wright. I would include Paula Wolfert in that list, but she is mostly hors de combat these days.

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BerryBaby

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added 5 months ago

SusanW found out from the restaurant it's an in house spice mix.

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PHIL

PHIL is a trusted home cook.

added 5 months ago

Maybe we should suggest Majitoom as a name for Sarah's cat.......

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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 5 months ago

That's a fabulous idea. Maji for short. :)

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dinner at ten

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added 5 months ago

Could it possibly be sumac? The restaurant website also say something about "majitoom" being in their fattoush, and sumac is the spice you'd put in fattoush. I'm sure sumac would be a delicious addition to baba ghanoush.

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added about 2 months ago

I found a picture of someone's fattoush salad COVERED in sumac, and they called it "fattoush with majitoom."

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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 5 months ago

Great guess. There is a sumac note both in the restaurant and in the premade product. It's hard to separate the citric acid from that lemony note, but it's there.

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added 4 months ago

Standing in Fred Meyers store looking at Majitoom. The ingredients are fresh garlic, olive oil, salt and natural citric acid... Majitoom!

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730e314f caf5 438f 9a9a 998057ffb9ff  20151109 150352
Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 4 months ago

That's crazy. So it's basically chopped garlic? Shazam!!

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added 2 months ago

I too was just searching for majitoom. I resulted in sending e-mail to Al-Amir and I got this in reply:
"Magitoom is Al Amir blend of fresh garlic, lemon and oil. It is an ingredient in all of our products. It is sold as an individual product in the Fred Mayer deli. It can be used in salads, marination for any sort of meat fish or vegetable, pasta, pizza etc."

730e314f caf5 438f 9a9a 998057ffb9ff  20151109 150352
Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 2 months ago

I bought some from Fred Meyer. I use it a lot!! I've attempted to recreate it, but there's just something about theirs. If I get closer to the taste, I'll post it.