R.I.P Amalia Abi Saleh

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amalia
via LBCBlogs

Lebanese Comedian Amalia Abi Saleh passed away earlier this morning. For those of you who are not familiar with Amalia, she took part in popular shows like Captain Bob and “Al Mou3allima Wal Oustaz”. Amalia had an accident almost a year ago and could no longer walk. She was denied medical attention at first because she had governmental Health Ministry Insurance, which prompted a donation campaign to help her out.

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BlogBaladi Undergoing Maintenance

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We will be switching servers and doing some changes in the next couple of days, so if you notice any weird things it’s probably cause of that. Hopefully we won’t be facing any major issues and things will run smooth

Update: Maintenance complete.

May Hariri Interview with Pakistan TV

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[YouTube]

I saw this interview a year ago but for some reason, everyone’s been sharing it in the past couple days. Her English is hilarious lol!

The video is getting so many unlikes that Raza Khan the interview wrote a comment explaining the purpose of her visit and trying to defend her horrible English accent.

I want to thank everybody who have taken the time to watch this video and then passed comments on it afterwards. All of you are entitled to your opinion and the will to express it. I would just like to state that when May Hariri visited Pakistan in Nov 2005, a massive earthquake in north-eastern Pakistan had already resulted in 80,000 plus casualties and colossal damage to homes & property. So her visit was more of a goodwill gesture on the part of Lebanese Government to express solidarity with the people of Pakistan. I was mainly a news & current affairs host/reporter at that time for Pakistan Television (PTV) the State Television of Pakistan which has been in operation since Nov 1964. On a very short notice I was called for the interview by the Program Manager of PTV Lahore Centre. I could not do any research on the guest and got into the interview with a short pre-program discussion. I accept my lack of knowledge about Lebanese music and singers. Some comments have come about the lack of English Language fluency by May Hariri but I must share with people that her demeanor & attitude was very courteous towards me, producer and the technical staff consisting of cameramen, light-men, audio engineers etc. She did not behave in a haughty or arrogant manner which is a hall mark of most celebrities even several Pakistani ones. Overall she left a good impression upon us. I may have introduced her as one of the most popular singers in Middle East but the reason for that may not be based on factual dynamics of fame in the middle east but more so with the desire on my part to make her feel nice about her gesture of coming to Pakistan. So a bit of exaggeration with a larger perspective of goodwill & image-building can be justified. Furthermore I must say that in future as well if any showbiz personality from Lebanon like Diana Haddad, Nancy Ajram, Haifa Wehbe, Nawal Al Zoghbi or others would visit Pakistan. They would get a similar welcoming response, protocol & hospitality as was extended to May Hariri. I hope that in future more such people to people contacts & exchange of visits take place between Pakistan & Lebanon so that relations can be strengthened.
Best regards,
RAZA KHAN

Review: Liza Restaurant – Beirut

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Liza Restaurant is a contemporary Lebanese Restaurant that first started in Paris and has recently opened in Achrafieh, Beirut. I’ve already been 3 times to Liza and every time the food and atmosphere were great. The restaurant is located in Achrafieh above La Posta Restaurant in a beautifully renovated old Lebanese villa. Liza consists of several rooms, each named differently and nicely decorated in an elegant oriental yet modern style.

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As far as the food is concerned, it is beautifully presented, looks fresh and tastes great. The portions are neither too small nor too big, which is great because you get to try out a lot of different dishes and actually finish them. The menu is quite rich and offers plenty of options for vegetarians, those who like meat and other traditional Lebanese dishes, picky customers etc ..

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Since I’ve been there few times already, I’ve had the chance to try out different dishes every time and here are some of the stuff I tried or recommend you try:

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Chanklish: I love Chanklish and theirs was among the best I’ve had at Lebanese Restaurants. It’s not mixed with onions and tomatoes like in other restaurants, which is the way I like it. It was a bit spicy though but fine by me.

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Moutabbal and Hummus: The dishes taste as good as they look.

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Makanek: They are bigger than the usual and really good. A couple of friends who were with me tried the Soujouk (I hate Soujouk) and loved it too.

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Halloum Grillé: This is by far my favorite starter at Liza. Halloum tastes great and the “confiture de tomate” in the middle is amazing! I usually keep aside the tomatoes in Lebanese dishes but this one has some jam in it and is a must-try.

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Mashewe Platter: The portion is barely enough for one person if you’re really hungry but the meat and Taouk were delicious.

If you want to try some special dishes, I recommend you try the Kharouf Bi Khams Bharat platter or the Moghrabiye Bel Sfarjal. If you are a Siyaddiye fan, they do it the proper way with Loukoz fish but it’s not always available. Their Kébbé méchwiyé is also worth a try. As far as desserts are concerned, my favorites are the Sfouf Bi Laktine and Achta aux agrumes.

Price-wise, Liza is a bit more expensive than your average Lebanese restaurant but it’s worth the price given that you’re in a sumptuous house with a lovely atmosphere and great food (and no arguile).

Here are some more pictures of Liza:

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For more info about Liza Beirut, click [Here].