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Recipes from the Magic Carpet Kavehane / Jalabba-the Hut

We get frequent requests for the recipes used at the the Magic Carpet Kavehane and Jalabba-the Hut. Although we are no sticklers for period authenticity when it comes to payment, the beverage recipes used are generally period. See Sources below.


Turkish Coffee

Barista Vente Juliane was taught Turkish coffee-making in her youth by the mother of a friend. This recipe uses her background, influenced by many other sources. Details of coffee-making will vary by the barista, so the recipe says "about (amount)" a lot. Note that there are a lot regional variations as well, and very strong opinions about what is right and wrong. This recipe seems to be most similar to the style of coffee making done in Lebanon.


Turkish coffee
Spices (optional)


The coffee is best brewed in an ibrik (Turkish coffee pot, perhaps more commonly called a cezve) which has a distinctive shape to promote proper brewing. This recipe is for a 1-cup ibrik, which serves about 3 (in demitasses). It may be scaled up for larger ibriks.

"Turkish coffee" is the generic term used for Middle Eastern/Mediterranean coffee, which can be found at Middle Eastern and Greek food stores, and occasionally in regular markets. The distinguishing characteristic is not the bean itself (presumably an Arabica), but the grind, which is the consistency of powdered sugar. Getting the coffee to the right consistency is done in a mortar and pestle or specialized grinder, so purchasing seems the best option.

Any sugar may be used, although "raw" sugar imparts a pleasant taste to the brew.

Different cultures spice the coffee differently. Any spice associated with the Middle East or Mediterranean (clove, cardamom, allspice, nutmeg, etc.) may appear. See also Moroccan Mix.


Fill the ibrik to about 2/3 full with water. This is about 1 cup; the water should be below the point where the ibrik forms a "chimney".

Note that the "teaspoon" is not necessarily a "legal measure" teaspoon. We actually use a spoon slightly smaller than a teaspoon.

Add about 1 teaspoon of spice, if desired, then 2-3 rounded teaspoons of sugar, then 3 rounded teaspoons of coffee. DO NOT STIR OR MIX. This will nearly fill the "chimney", but the level will go down as the solids dissolve in the warming water.

Place over medium heat. After 5-10 minutes (depending on your definition of medium heat - this is typically done over an open flame) the brew will begin to bubble. Keep a close watch at this point. You want the brew to develop a froth all the way to the brim of the ibrik but not boil over, and this may develop very quickly.

Remove the ibrik from the heat and allow the brew to cool for the length of time it takes to sing a short song. (This is a bardic coffee house recipe, after all.)

Return the ibrik to the heat source, and heat until it froths to the brim again. This may be repeated as often as time allows, although a three-boil pot is considered lucky - and tasty.

To Serve:

Pour into demitasse cups, taking care to include some froth. Warn novice imbibers that a sludge will form at the bottom of the cup (some hardy souls drink/chew this for dessert).


Moroccan Mix

This spice mixture, based on multiple sources, is popular at the Kavehane. The pepper flavor is quite prominent, and the proportion of pepper could probably be reduced.


4 parts ground cinnamon
1 part ground nutmeg
1 part ground ginger
1 part ground white pepper
1 part ground cardamom



We use the term "Jalab" generically, as it seems to mean something like "spiced syrup" in Arabic (a little help here?). See the note on Sources below.

The reader is encouraged to experiment with a wide variety of Middle Eastern spices. There really is no "recipe" for these drinks.



It seems to suit the taste of our customers that the first three of our jalabs are based on this single syrup recipe. We have used refined white sugar, but other types (including honey) might be substituted.


6 cups sugar
2 cups water


In a 3-quart saucepan, mix sugar into water, and heat. When the mixture reaches a boil, (add ingredients as instructed), reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes, (add ingredients as instructed), and allow to cool.

The syrup will thicken slightly over the cooking time (one recipe says to cook until "it coats the back of a spoon"), but will become much thicker as it cools.

These syrups do not need to be refrigerated. In fact, if you do refrigerate, you may find the sugar will crystalize, and you'll have some dandy candy.

To Serve:

Dilute the jalab (not the unflavored syrup) with water, anywhere from 1:5 to 1:10 (to taste).


Ginger Jalab


Simple Syrup
5 tablespoons minced ginger
2 sticks cinnamon
1-6 cloves


Begin with the simple syrup recipe above, adding the spices when it comes to a boil.

Let cool and strain out solids.


The spice mixture is fully in the hands of the cook. We have had good results with both a little clove and a lot, for example.

Like the sekanjabin recipe, this one originally called for less sugar (4 cups) and more water (2-1/2 cups).




Simple Syrup
1/2 cup wine vinegar
2/3 ounce mint (a handful)


Begin with the simple syrup recipe above, adding vinegar when it comes to a boil, and adding mint when it has finished simmering. Allow to cool.


The original had less sugar (4 cups), more water (2-1/2 cups) and more vinegar (1 cup). This was more vinegary and less sweet than most people like.

Lady Katherine (see Sources) substituted cider vinegar for the wine vinegar.


Rose Jalab

The flavor is very subtle. We plan to experiment with this one, doubling the rosewater (or using a more concentrated brand?).


Simple Syrup
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon red food coloring
4 tablespoons rose water


Begin with the simple syrup recipe above, adding lemon juice when it comes to a boil and the rosewater and food coloring at the end of the simmer. Allow to cool.


For food coloring, substitute cochineal. We have never used a full 1/4 teaspoon of food coloring.


Pomegranate Jalab

Note that this recipe does NOT employ the simple syrup recipe, since it is based on commercial pomegranate juice (already a thin syrup). Thus, the added sugar is reduced compared to other cordials/syrups. Also, unike the other syrups recipes, this one called for refrigeration.


1 cup pomegranate juice
1 cup sugar
1 clove
1 pinch mace
2 pods cardamom
1/2 stick cinnamon
lemon peel


Combine all ingredients and simmer over low heat 20-30 minutes.  Allow to cool, strain solids, bottle and chill.



The coffee recipe is an amalgamation of recipes from all over; no two baristas brew the coffee exactly the same.

The Moroccan Mix spice mixture was derived from descriptions of how people in Morocco seem to like their (instant, Nescafe) coffee.

The originals of the jalab recipes were handed to us in a sheaf of paper, at least part of which can be found online at Unfortunately, we have been unable to definitively identify the author of this A&S project, although we assume it is Lady Katherine Percival (of Adamastor). Lady Katherine had worked over the recipes already (and we have modified them further), but where known, these are the ultimate sources:

The ginger jalab is largely the work of Lady Katherine, suggested by a recipe in Cariodoc's Miscellany (after An Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook, translated by Charles Perry). The pomegranate jalab derives more immediately from the same sources.

The sekanjabin is also derived from a recipe in Cariodoc's Miscellany, (after A Book of Middle Eastern Food, by Claudia Roden).

The "rose cordial" is credited simply to "Mistress Rowan". Any assistance in clarifying this source would be welcome.

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