Lib koosa is a juicy and sour Lebanese zucchini dip made from cooked zucchini insides in a lemon and mint sauce. Quick, easy and naturally vegan and gluten free.
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What is Lib Koosa?
Lib koosa is Arabic for zucchini insides also referred to zucchini flesh or pulp.
It can also be referred to as lib el kousa which translates to pulp of the zucchini.
It is used to name this zucchini dip recipe with the main ingredients being zucchini flesh cooked in a lemon, mint sauce.
It is generally served at breakfast time, as a side dish or part of a mezze and is generally the by-product of when making Kousa Mahshi (stuffed zucchini)
Each zucchini/gray squash is cored resulting in a mound of golden flesh. (which can also used in my delicious chickpea omelette recipe, or try it with vegan scrambled eggs.
However, I have noted below (in the ingredients section) how to make this dish without coring a zucchini.
Click here to learn how to core a zucchini.
Ingredients You'll Need
Zucchini of the varieties of green, grey or golden can be used. These are long cylindrical types that are the size of a hand generally.
I normally use either grey zucchini (aka Lebanese zucchini or grey squash) or green zucchini as they are the readily available ones in the shops.
The zucchinis are generally hollowed to make kousa mahshi (stuffed zucchini) and the leftover insides become the main ingredient of this zucchini dip recipe. Learn how to core zucchini using either a manual corer or an electrical corer (affiliate links).
Tip: If you want to make this recipe and not hollow out a zucchini, then you can go ahead and grate them on the large size, avoid small or fine grating as this will be mushy.
Freshly squeezed lemon juice is combined with a small amount of extra virgin olive oil to make the sauce of this zucchini insides recipe. Avoid using bottled lemon juice and a poor quality olive oil, both of these ingredients are important for this meal which can affect the taste.
Ground mint is used for a cool delicate flavoring. Finely chopped fresh mint can be used instead.
Salt and pepper are added to taste.
?How to Cook Zucchini Insides
Step 1 - In a small pot, over medium heat, cook zucchini flesh until tender, about five minutes. Stirring occasionally.
Step 2 - Optionally discard excess water once flesh is tender, or you can keep the water and use bread to mop up the juices. Stir through the lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, mint, salt and pepper with cooked zucchini flesh. Serve warm or cold, with pita bread (topped additional olive oil)
Tip - zucchini flesh contains a lot of water which will cook out when heat is applied, so there is no need to add oil to the pot to cook.
Serve lib koosa with pita bread. Tear pieces of bread which are used to scoop out the flesh, hand to mouth eating. Use the bread to mop up the juices.
Generally, this meal is served as a breakfast meal, part of a mezze, a collection of small plates of food, such as musabaha, balila or foul moudamas and plenty of fresh vegetables.
Add this chunky zucchini dip to your toast for breakfast, it is magical (I love this so much!)
Whilst it is typically a breakfast food, my family loves to eat it any time of day. Because well why not?!
Once completely cooled down to room temperature, transfer to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat the required portion, either on a stovetop or in a microwave.
Once the insides of a zucchini has been taken out, place the flesh in a covered container in the fridge for up to 2-3 days until you are ready to cook the flesh. The color may change slightly, you can drizzle a small amount of lemon juice to stop this.
This can differ between zucchinis and can range from a bright yellow, pale yellow, pale green and almost white. All of these colored flesh are perfectly normally and taste the same.
You might also enjoy these vegan Lebanese breakfast recipes
- Lebanese zucchini with burghul is another way to use zucchini insides
- Fresh oregano salad - great on toast
- Ejjeh - you can also use zucchini flesh with this recipe
- Balela - a chickpea salad
- Fatayer bi sabanekh - spinach hand pies
Of course, another famous Lebanese dip is Lebanese hummus, so creamy!
Delicious Zucchini Insides (Lib Koosa)
- 6 small Lebanese zucchini flesh see notes (grey squash)
- 1 small Lemon juiced, or to taste
- 1 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil or to taste
- ½ teaspoon Dried Mint ground
- ½ teaspoon Salt or to taste
- ¼ teaspoon Cracked black pepper or to taste
- In a small pot, over medium heat, cook zucchini flesh until tender. Optional, Discard excess water once flesh is tender. See notes.6 small Lebanese zucchini flesh
- Combine lemon, olive oil, mint, salt and pepper with cooked zucchini flesh. Serve hot or cold with Lebanese bread and topped with additional olive oil if desired.1 small Lemon, 1 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil, ½ teaspoon Dried Mint, ½ teaspoon Salt, ¼ teaspoon Cracked black pepper
N.B., nutrition info is an estimate based on an online nutrition calculator. This will vary based on the specific ingredients you use.
Delicious!! Was easy to make and tasted great on pita, topped with tehine
Mmmm, I love the addition of the tahini. Yum!
how long can this keep in the fridge?
It should keep for 3 days.
Thank you! Thank you! for years I couldn’t find this recipe but knew it as a child. I love it.
You're more than welcome! It's so important to keep our childhood foods going.
Made this the other day. Had it on toast. Lebanese recipes are always versatile.
better than any store bought condiment on toast - great idea!