You Are What You Digest


Vegetarian Maklouba (Upside Down)


Maklouba meaning upside down, is a very loved Jordanian & Palestinian dish. It's called Upside Down because generally once the cooking is done the pot with the Maklouba is turned upside down on a big round tray letting the layers of veggies, chicken, and rice form a crumbly oh-so-delicious savory cake. If you ask Jordanians and Palestinians who live abroad what kinds of food they miss the most, Maklouba will without be in the top 5 of the list! Its aromatic flavors just instantly make you feel home. Warm, filling, and infused with the tender love of a mother. That's how Maklouba tastes like for me. 

In Ayurveda I never stick to one cuisine. I get inspired by other cuisines and try to turn them into a more wholesome and balanced dishes that can leave me and those who I create for light and energized. 

Maklouba can be a heavy dish. While sometimes I just go for the original version as I opt for living my life in balance, other times I tweak the recipe  (I apologize who feel insulted by changing this recipe haha but sometimes health is worth it) to create a healthier, lighter, Ayurvedic, and vegetarian version of this yummy dish. The aromas of the spices are still the same but it wont leave you with a burning sensation in the top of your stomach but energized, and satisfied for the rest of the day! Note: I always replace onions with fenugreek! Onions can be quite harsh on the digestive system and overheats the mind so a couple of pinches of fenugreek just do the trick! As for the protein source, I just replace the chicken with chickpeas which gives it a really yummy taste. I added carrots instead of regular potatoes. The carrots are necessary to balance out the purifying effect of cauliflower and chickpeas. I found that when the Makouba is made without any starchy vegetables then my digestion is not as smooth and some bloating can be experienced. But just adding some starchy veggie to it makes my gut super happy.


  • 1/2 cup dried chickpeas
  • 1 cup white basmati rice
  • 4 cups chopped cauliflower
  • 4 handfuls chopped carrots
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander 
  • 4 pinches fenugreek
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • Water

Soak chickpeas overnight before you cook them. Cook the chickpeas in a pressure cooker for 18 minutes or in a regular pot for 45 minutes. 

Brush the cauliflower with olive oil and pop them in the oven until they're cooked (takes about 20-30 minutes but really depends on your oven!). 

Once the cauliflower and the chickpeas are done, heat up ghee on a medium heat and add all the spices. Wait for the aroma of the spices to come up then add the cauliflower with the carrots and chickpeas. Mix them all together so the spices are distributed then add rice in the end. Add 2.5 cups of water (you might need more), bring to a boil then let it simmer until the rice is done. 

You can serve it with waterer down yogurt sauce with fresh mint/parsley/cilantro leaves.

Let me know how it is if you end up trying it! 

Enjoy, Sa7tayn صحتين, Bon Appétit, Que Aproveche!