Batata jezzynyieh is the town of Jezzine’s take on batata harra, but made with cumin, the South’s spice. The joke goes that a guest, over lunch in the South, tasted cumin in every single dish he ate, and so handed back his water to the host, asking her if she was not mistaken by serving him “un-cumined” water!
- 3 medium potatoes
- 5 tablespoons (73 ml) olive oil
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/3 bunch green coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Kamal Mouzawak
Preheat the oven to 500°F (250°C, or gas mark 10).
Cut the potatoes into thick wedges, without peeling them. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons (28 ml) of the olive oil, season to taste with salt, and rub well for the pieces to be coated with oil and salt. Put on a baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes or longer, until puffed and golden.
Crush the garlic clove with a little salt. Chop the coriander and crush it with the garlic until you obtain a smooth paste. Add the cumin, lemon juice, and the remaining olive oil, and drizzle the mixture over the cooked potatoes while still on the baking sheet. If the potatoes stick to the pan, let them soak in the cumin sauce for a couple of minutes and they will detach. Serve warm.