Sherryl Betesh’s Kibbe Nabelsieh: Meat-Filled Bulgur Shells
“Stop picking,” my grandmother always scolded, swatting away our little hands. “There won’t be enough for everybody else.”
Between 1941 and the 1970s the majority of Iraq’s Jewish population faced institutionalized violence and persecution in their homeland, forcing them to flee. Today, only a handful of Jews remain in Iraq, down from an estimated 150,000 in 1948. For the Iraqi Jews who sought refuge in Israel (some sources say up to 90%), their food is their remaining legacy. Dishes like meat stuffed dumplings called kubbeh are their lifeline to a country they cannot return to, and recipes are carefully passed down through the generations to preserve their heritage.