Simply Lebanese

Molokhia with Roz

Molokhia with Roz
  • Prep Time
    45 mins
  • Cook Time
    70 mins
  • Serving
    6
Jute leaves and chicken are simmered in a lemony chicken broth and served with rice for the classic Middle Eastern stew known as Molokhia. This Lebanese version is irresistibly delicious and filled with antioxidants.
Molokhia with Roz

Molokhia is a very popular jews mallow (jute leaves) stew throughout the Middle-east. The word Molokhia is spelled in so many different ways and in Arabic translates to jews mallow, and/or jute leaves. Jute leaves are highly nutritious, and loaded with folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin C and antioxidants.

What is Molokhia?

Jute leaves/Jews mallow is a leafy green vegetable originating in Ancient Egypt, and found throughout the Middle East and North Africa. The dish Molokhia is considered by many as the national dish of Egypt. The Egyptian version however, differs greatly in texture and preparation from the Levantine version. The Egyptian Molokhia is more soup-like and made with minced Molokhia.

The Levantine version of Molokhia uses whole leaves rather than minced leaves of Molokhia (jute leaves). The jute leaves combined with chicken and fresh broth, and served with rice makes this dish so delicious and healthy.

This stew is highly favored in the Middle-East by old and young. It is a household favorite, and often joked that when Molokhia is made, it is one of those dishes that is prepared in the largest pot in the home and eaten for days. 

Molokhia with Roz

How is Molokhia made?

The stew begins the same way all the Lebanese yekhnes begin, with fresh chopped cilantro and crushed garlic. I sauté the cilantro and garlic in ghee, but, feel free to substitute with any oil/butter. In this recipe, I used dry jute leaves. However, in Lebanese Molokhia, you can use the jute leaves in all their forms, from fresh, frozen to dried.

Molokhia is primarily made with chicken but, is sometimes made with stew beef. You could mix both chicken breast and stew beef, to make the stew even heartier.

Traditionally, you want cook and shred a whole chicken for this dish, but, I like to use bone-in chicken breast. Boneless chicken breast works wonderfully as well.  

I cook the chicken first, use the broth to cook the Molokhia leaves, shred the chicken, and add it at the end. The size of the shredded chicken is completely up to you. I like them small like about an inch thick, not too small so, I could pick out how much I want in my own plate.

Different Forms of Jute Leaves

Everyone has their own preference when it comes down to in what form to use the leaves in this stew. Some people will only make it using dry leaves, while some highly prefer using only the fresh leaves.

The fresh leaves aren’t easily found outside the Middle-Eastern countries and during their peak season, but, if you are able to find them, they are quite delicious in Molokhia. I have tried all versions and honestly do not have much of a preference. The fresh has a bit of a distinct taste compared to the dried or frozen, but, nonetheless, all are delicious. The fresh leaves are washed thoroughly, dried and sautéed with a little bit of oil until wilted. They are then added to the sautéed garlic and cilantro.

I find the frozen leaves to be by far the easiest to cook in this stew. You can find them at most Middle-Eastern and Indian grocers. There are quite a few different brands, such as “Montana,” which, is the brand I find quite often and have purchased many times. Make sure when purchasing the frozen Molokhia to buy the bag of “whole leaves” and NOT the minced Molokhia. The minced Molokhia is what the Egyptian Molokhia recipe uses. They are not interchangeable, the minced one will not work in this recipe.

To make this stew using the frozen bags of Molokhia, add the frozen Molokhia (no need to thaw) directly to the chicken broth after sautéing the cilantro and garlic. There is no need to saute the leaves with the cilantro and garlic. The cook time should be the same.

Mlokheye Leaves

You can purchase the dried leaves at most Middle-eastern grocers. I buy mine in Lebanon and store them in an airtight container. The dried leaves are great, because they have such a long shelf life. I don’t know exactly how long they are good for but, my current batch I bought two years ago and they are still wonderful!

To cook the dried leaves, I start out by rehydrating them in hot water. From there, I wash the leaves very thoroughly before sautéing them. It takes a good 15-20 times of washing and rinsing until the water runs clear.

When cooked, Molokhia has somewhat of a slimy texture, similar to okra. This is one of the reasons why we thoroughly wash the leaves before cooking them, to remove most of the sliminess.

STEP 1

In a medium sized pot, heat one tablespoon of olive oil. Season the chicken breast with one teaspoon of salt and black pepper. Cook over high heat for about 2 minutes per side. Add the bay leaves, cloves, onion, remaining salt and about 6 cups of water.

Cook on high heat until boiling, then lower the heat to medium and cook until chicken has cooked through, about 20-30 minutes.

Set cooked chicken aside to cool. Once cooled, shred the chicken.

STEP 2

Add 10 cups of the dried molokhia leaves to a large mixing bowl. Remove any stems or brown/yellow leaves.

Heat up a kettle of water until just boiling, and pour over the leaves to re-hydrate them.Let soak for at least 5 minutes.

Drain the water and pour the leaves into a colander over the bowl.

STEP 3

Pour water over the leaves in the colander and swirl around with your hands. Drain the water and squeeze the molokhia. You will feel slime oozing out of your hands. Repeat this step until the water runs CLEAR and the molokhia is no longer slimy

STEP 4

Wash the fresh cilantro and cut off the stems. Finely chop and set aside.

STEP 5

Peel the garlic and cut in half or thirds (reserve about 5 whole cloves of garlic aside). Place in a mortar and top with a teaspoon of salt. Crush the garlic until no chunks remain.

Fasolia wa Roz

STEP 6

In a large deep pot, heat up ¼ cup of ghee or vegetable oil. Add chopped cilantro and crushed garlic and sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes..

STEP 7

Add the washed and squeezed-dry molokhia, and whole cloves of garlic to the cilantro/garlic mix and sauté for about 5 minutes.

STEP 8

Using a strainer to catch the aromatics in the fresh chicken broth, add the broth to the pot of molokhia. If necessary, add additional water to cover all the molokhia leaves. Let it cook over medium heat for 20 minutes.

*Add 1-2 whole Habanero peppers for added flavor. (This will not make your Molokhia spicy unless you cut the pepper open.)

*Optional

Molokhia

STEP 9 - RICE

Prepare the rice while the Molokhia is cooking. For the rice recipe, please visit: Lebanese Rice with Vermicelli Noodles

STEP 10

Add the shredded chicken, dried coriander, and lemon juice to the Molokhia stew. Taste for salt and add if needed. Let it simmer for 5 more minutes.

*If you added the habanero peppers, remove now and set aside. They can be eaten on the side with the prepared stew for an extra spicy kick.

Serve the stew with prepared rice with vermicelli noodles.

Molokhia with Roz
Molokhia with Roz

Molokhia with Roz

Jute leaves and chicken are simmered in a lemony chicken broth and served with rice for the classic Middle Eastern stew known as Molokhia. This Lebanese version is irresistibly delicious and filled with antioxidants.
4.63 from 43 votes
Print Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Lebanese
Keyword: jews mallow, jute leaves stew, Mlokheye, mloukhiya, molokhia, mulukhiyah, mulukhiyyah
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 55 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 297kcal
Author: Iman

Ingredients

  • 10 cups Dry Jews Mallow Leaves or 5 Cups hydrated or Fresh/frozen
  • ¼ cup Ghee or Vegetable Oil
  • 17 cloves Garlic
  • 2 bunches Cilantro
  • 2 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tb. Dried Coriander
  • 2 Lemons juiced

Boiling Chicken

  • 2 Whole Chicken Breasts
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 5 Cloves
  • ½ Onion
  • 2 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Black Pepper
  • 1 tb. Olive Oil

Instructions

  • In a medium sized pot, heat one tablespoon of olive oil. Season the chicken breast with one teaspoon of salt and black pepper. Cook over high heat for about 2 minutes per side. Add the bay leaves, cloves, onion, remaining salt and about 6 cups of water. Cook on high heat until boiling, then lower the heat to medium and cook until chicken has cooked through, about 20-30 minutes. Set cooked chicken aside to cool. Once cooled, shred the chicken.
  • Add 10 cups of the dried molokhia leaves to a large mixing bowl. Remove any stems or brown/yellow leaves. Heat up a kettle of water until just boiling, and pour over the leaves to re-hydrate them. Let soak for at least 5 minutes. Drain the water and pour the leaves into a colander over the bowl.
  • Pour water over the leaves in the colander and swirl around with your hands. Drain the water and squeeze the molokhia. You will feel slime oozing out of your hands. Repeat this step until the water runs CLEAR and the molokhia is no longer slimy (My batch took about 20 washes.)
  • Wash the fresh cilantro and cut off the stems. Finely chop and set aside.
  • Peel the garlic and cut in half or thirds (reserve about 5 whole cloves of garlic aside). Place in a mortar and top with a teaspoon of salt. Crush the garlic until no chunks remain.
  • In a large deep pot, heat up ¼ cup of ghee or vegetable oil. Add chopped cilantro and crushed garlic and sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes.
  • Add the washed and squeezed-dry molokhia, and whole cloves of garlic to the cilantro/garlic mix and sauté for about 5 minutes.
  • Using a strainer to catch the cloves and everything else, add the chicken broth to the pot. If necessary, add additional water to cover all the molokhia leaves. Let cook over medium heat for 20 minutes.
  • Add the shredded chicken, dried coriander, and lemon juice to the Molokhia stew. Taste for salt and add if needed. Let simmer for 5 more minutes.
    *If you added the habanero peppers, remove now and set aside. They can be eaten on the side with the prepared stew for an extra spicy kick.
  • Serve the stew with prepared rice with vermicelli noodles.

Notes

Add Habanero peppers for extra flavor (optional).
For Lebanese Rice with Vermicelli Noodles recipe visit: https://www.simplyleb.com/recipe/lebanese-rice-vermicelli-noodles/

Nutrition

Serving: 6g | Calories: 297kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 27.8g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 7.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5.4g | Cholesterol: 57mg | Sodium: 1986mg | Potassium: 226mg | Fiber: 1.7g | Sugar: 1.2g | Vitamin A: 29.7IU | Vitamin C: 15.3mg | Calcium: 7.9mg | Iron: 12.4mg

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    Recipe Reviews

    • Leo Baker

      5 stars
      Another brilliant traditional recipe made it simple to follow and understand by Iman. I used dried whole leaves, which I much prefer to the powdery one. I altered the spice quantities slightly, but the results remain fabulous.

      Well done Iman, keep on the good work 😉

      • Iman

        Thank you so much, so kind of you!

    • Liliana

      5 stars
      It reminds me mart ‘ami um wassim my mother in law only that I liked it better whole leaves….hah hah. Easy to follow recipe and glad it has directions for dry mulukhyeh since it’s easier to find in Canada and keeps for long without taking space in the freezer. Thanks a
      lot!!!

      • Iman

        Yes, the traditional Lebanese recipe tends to use the whole leaves, I find it much tastier especially texture-wise! Thank you!

    • Paul

      5 stars
      Happy to rate this recipe a five star as I enjoyed the recipe presentation as well as the whole narrative. As a seventy something make cook I’ve wanted to try this for a long time. I used the dry leaves, spent possibly too long rinsing the leaves but really enjoyed the final result with my wife last night. Not surprised that the flavours deepened overnight when we hopped into more for lunch today.
      I chose to boil a quality free range chook and shredded but followed the remainder resolutely! I also made your rice with basmati which was quite good. I’ll work on that one!
      We’ll done Iman… cheers from Australia

      • Iman

        Thank you so much for your kind comment, you are too sweet!

    • sana

      5 stars
      Excellent! Thank you

      • Iman

        Thank you for your kind comment!

    • eyejem

      hello, how can i solve this problem with this page showing? eye

    • Andreea Micu

      My husband is Lebanese and I wanted to surprise him with the molokhia as he said to me I am not able to do it, not everyone can do it. I can’t wait to serve him the dinner today 😋 it is lovely. Thank you

      • Iman

        Molokhia seems to be more intimidating than it really is, I hope it came out perfect for you guys!

    • terri copenhaver

      ok what readily available in US grocery stores would be close to the jute leaves?
      i have many friends in Lebanon and i want to learn about the food

    • diana haddad

      2 stars
      kind of unorganized recipe. and on the other hand, they call for chicken broth and there is not chicken broth ingredient insight

      • Iman

        Not sure what you mean by unorganized, the steps are very detailed! I mentioned many times throughout the post and in the steps that the chicken you cook, the broth that comes from it what is used as the chicken broth for the stew. I say to “strain the broth from the aromatics.. etc.. Let me know if you still need any help!

    • Ruby

      Oh my thank you for sharing this Iman! I am not from Lebanon and I have been trying to find a site for Lebanese recipes! Then I found your site, this helped me cook my man his fave Lebanese cuisine. I have been your instant fan, will be browsing some other recipes from you 🙂

      • Iman

        Oh that is so wonderful. I hope you both enjoyed the dish! Thank you so much.

    • Kerstin Rasch

      Ist alles verschoben, sorry.Rezept ist klasse…schon oft gekocht.Danke❤?

    • Rema

      I made this tonight! It was great! Im used to the frozen minced molakhiya. There was some fresh one in stock and decided to try it. Thanks!

      • Iman

        Thats awesome, glad you liked it!!

    • Maria

      5 stars
      Excellent recipe, I’m from Lebanon and I’m going to try to make it for the first time.
      Using two packs of frozen Mloukhiah leaves, 400g each.
      Do I still fry it for 5 minutes?
      Using a whole chicken also, cooking it in pressure cooker with all the ingredients mentioned in the recipe.
      Thank you!

      • Iman

        Thank you so much! When using frozen, you can add the broth to the sautéed cilantro and garlic and then add the frozen leaves on top immediately. They do not need to be sautéed! Enjoy!!

    • Paula

      Excellent recipe. Detailed ..
      But for the chicken you say to add 5 cloves…. do you mean cloves of garlic? Or cloves?
      Enjoy all the recipes. Thank you.

      • Iman

        Thank you so much. I mean cloves as in the spice cloves, not garlic!

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