Macarona Bil Laban was always my favorite childhood food. But you know how there are some favorite foods that are only good when they are made by certain people or enjoyed in certain places? This yogurt pasta is exactly that for me.
My Tata Nado (May Allah swt have mercy on her soul) used to make this all the time for me growing up. But it was my favorite when she made it at her house. I used to find a long weekend and have a sleepover at her house. I’d pack all my stuff and be ready for the best weekend. She was meticulous and everything in her house had a place, and I loved it. I’d get set up in my room and get to stay up late talking with her, watching TV and just enjoying her company until one of use started to doze off.
It was always the same menu. A savory cheese omelette with a tomato scallion and labneh salad for breakfast. Artichoke Stew with white rice topped with pine nuts and a huge salad for dinner. And of course for lunch, my absolute favorite, Macarona Bil Laban. She’d always joke around that she didn’t think she had pasta, but she always made sure she had everything before our sleepovers, and I knew that.
We’d make the macarona together. She was so clean. No matter what she cooked, her kitchen was always spotless, and I strived to be like that. She’d boil the macaroni, usually elbow. After it boiled she would strain it out and add some spices and oil to it. She would always tell me that the pasta had to be spiced so it wasn’t bland. After that she’d set it aside to cool a little while we made the sauce. Fresh Greek Yogurt, a big spoon of Labneh, some salt, and fresh minced garlic. And don’t you dare leave the garlic out. Because that’s what made it amazing. She would add the pasta and I would love to stand next to her and listen to the oozing of the pasta as she mixed it in. I would always have seconds, but it was okay because we’d have a late dinner.
So many of these little details I never realized I noticed that are now so nostalgic to me. The sound of falling asleep to her clock ticking, the smells of certain foods. The plastic on top of her tablecloth, the paper towels to cover the undressed salad. All the little details that now bring back some of the most amazing memories. Cherish your loved ones. Enjoy all the moments you get with them, because all too quickly they’re gone. May god reunite us with them in the highest ranks of Jannah.Print
Macarona Bil Laban – Yogurt Pasta
A creamy and tangy yogurt pasta. The pasta is seasoned before adding the yogurt, and is literal perfection. This is the perfect fast weeknight meal. Top it with ground beef to make it a well rounded dinner.
1 1/2 cups Greek Yogurt
1/4 cup Labne (You can just use more yogurt, this thickens and adds richness)
1 tsp salt
2 cloves garlic
1/2 lb Pasta of Choice. I like elbow, penne, or spiral
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp black pepper
Cook your pasta per directions of the one you’re using. Strain the pasta and add the the black pepper, allspice, and oil. Mix well. Set aside to cool slightly while you make the sauce.
In another bowl, whisk the yogurt, labne, salt, and smashed garlic. Once the mixture is smooth add the pasta. Mix well. Serve immediately. I also like to top it with ground beef and pine nuts. My makhshi filling works perfectly!