J:

This is the menu for Sarah's birthday Sunday Dinner, which I'm
afraid was way back in April. I'm only a few meals behind due
to trips and softball games but I'll try to catch up tonight.

Sarah requested garlicky stuff, perhaps Middle Eastern. I made
Dolma (stuffed cabbage), Jajoukh (cucumbers in yogurt), roasted
potatoes, and steamed asparagus -- all with extra added garlic.

The Dolma and cucumber recipes are from _Sundays at Moosewood_.

Jajoukh (doubled)

4 cucumbers, thinly sliced
6 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
2 Tbsp dried dill
3 cups plain yogurt (I used low fat)
4-6 Tbsp fresh lemon juice, or to taste (I used 1/2 cup)
2 Tbsp olive oil
6 large garlic cloves, minced (I used about 15)
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp salt

Toss all together and chill

Dolma

I think I about one-and-a-halfed this one. I'll give you the
normal version and you can scale up.

Cook 3 uncooked cups of brown rice.

In 1/4 cup olive oil, saute

2 large onions, chopped
6 large garlic cloves, minced (I used about 15)
2/3 cup chopped fresh basil
1 1/2 Tbsp dried basil
1 1/2 Tbsp dried marjoram

until onions are translucent. Scoop out half and add to the
rice, along with

2 cups chopped walnuts
1-2 cups pine nuts
1/4 cup lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

Mix well. To the other half of the onion mixture, add

6 oz tomato paste
2 28 oz cans chopped tomatoes with juice
3 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste

Simmer for about 10 minutes.

Boil a big pot of water, then turn off the heat. Soften the
cabbage leaves by putting them in the water for a few minutes
each. Plop some of the rice mix in the middle of a leaf and
roll it up, tucking in the sides. Put an inch of the sauce mix
in a big pot. Arrange stuffed cabbage leaves in the pot, two
layers deep if they'll fit. Pour remaining sauce over them,
nearly covering (add a little water and lemon juice if you
have to). Cover tightly and simmer for 45 minutes.

Potatoes

I quartered a bunch of potatoes and tossed them with a mixture
of lemon juice, minced garlic, salt and pepper, with a little
olive oil, then roasted them, tossing occasionally. They were
pretty good, but since then, I saw an article in "Cook's
Illustrated" that tells the perfect way to roast potatoes.
Read it if you can but the synopsis is:

Toss before cooking with a little oil, roast covered for 20
minutes, uncovered for 15 minutes, turn the pieces, roast for
5-10 minutes more. For garlic, toss with raw chopped garlic
after cooking to avoid burning the garlic, but while still hot
from the oven to take the raw edge off.