Weekend Market: Souk El Tayeb

There’s a small organic farmer’s market Souk El Tayeb on the waterfront in Beirut (it changes locations based on seasons, I believe).  We decided to check it out because it was National Tabbouleh Day in Lebanon (which just means everyone eats just as much as every other day of the year).  Super friendly people though, they kept feeding Cole little pieces of fruit and inviting me to take pictures.

There were a lot of home made baked goods.

Tons of home made goods actually, mostly pickled things and jams.

Of course we all got to eat tabbouleh and I learned that there are some very big regional differences in how it’s made.  (Lebanese tabbouleh has very little Bulgar cracked wheat in it, verses what you might get in the States.)

It’s mostly green and has lots of tomatoes.  Later I looked up the recipe which called for quite a bit of mint!

These are the most delicious cherries in the world.  They are white inside.

Plums.

I bought a big bag of sumac, which is used in a lot of Touk recipes (the grilled kabobs in Lebanese cooking) and I’m told you can put it in anything (just before she sold me a bag, hmm.)

I also bought some rose jam.  Yum!

And pickled stuff, which I’m sure someone will tell me what this is, but I’ve seen in it sandwiches, so I know it’s good.

And finally pickled Labneh, which is like yogurt, and made Drew roll his eyes at me.  I’m going to sneak it into a dish without telling him. :)

An hour at the market.  I also got some dried figs and a massive bag of Zatar, which is a Thyme spice mix that’s used a lot here.  I’m slowly building a proper Lebanese kitchen.

27 Comments

  1. Fantastic. Love the photos! Looks like you got some good stuff there. Just tell Drew the labneh is “cheese”. The pickled stuff could be beets, no?

  2. Mmm the first shot of the berries reminds me of the fruit in the bazaar in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. Most intense flavours ever. Some mouthwatering photos here!

  3. The pink “pickled stuff” looks like the pickled turnip that is often served with kebab or just separately at the middle eastern restaurants we frequent inToronto. (My husband is originally from Syria.) Fab photos!

  4. I love farmer’s markets – in fact, I my most recent move was to be closer to a saturday market selling organic food! I’ve never heard of cherries that are white inside – do they taste similar? Would love to try those!

  5. I like cherries, but the cherries here is so expensive. I like that kind of market, then I can eat so much delicious food…

  6. I loved this! Is there any possibility you could pass along the recipe for this type of tabbouleh? The pickled jar looks like daikon or a radish of some sort… regardless this post has reminded me that I am over do for my lunch! Great images by the way!

  7. Wow, when I use to live out in the middle east we discovered the great foods that were on offer in the Souks and never looked back.

  8. Hi, from your newest blog reader.
    What a beautiful looking market you visited in the city. I thought the markets in Europe were something, but maybe I should broaden my horizons to Beirut!! The tabbouleh looked to die for- Looking forward to reading more posts.

    Sarah
    lamb411.com

  9. The photos look fabulous! And the Souk does look really amazing. Although I’ve never been to Souk El Tayeb, it really reminds me of Souk Waqif from Doha. My wife and I stayed at Fraser Suites Doha hotel apartments which were just a short drive away from Souk Waqif it was so amazing. Many fond memories of trying (and buying) lots of amazing food.

  10. You are talented person, traveler…so I offer you to have link exchange with our company ))) will be glad to cooperate with you

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