Imbakbaka From Lybia

Libyan Entree



1 pound boneless chicken parts or 1⅓ pounds with bone in
3 garlic cloves
1 jalapeno (optional)
1 medium onion
3 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil
¾ teaspoon cayenne
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ tablespoon coriander
½ teaspoon cumin
¼ teaspoon paprika
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon turmeric
3 tablespoons tomato paste
5 cups water
¾ pound elbow macaroni or other pasta
1 cup canned and drained garbanzo beans or diced carrots

Serves 6. Takes 45 minutes.


Cut or divide chicken into 8 pieces. Mince garlic. Seed jalapeno and cut it into long, thin strips. Dice onion. Add oil, garlic, and onion to large pot. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Add chicken, cayenne, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, paprika, pepper, salt, and turmeric. Sauté at medium-high heat for 4 minutes or until chicken pieces brown on all sides. Stir frequently.

Reduce heat to medium. Add tomato paste. Cook for 3 minutes. Stir enough to prevent burning. Add water and jalapeno strips.. (The water should completely cover the chicken.) Bring to boil using high heat. Stir enough to prevent burning. Add macaroni and garbanzo beans. Reduce heat to low. Simmer for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally.


1) Many avant-garde diners want to eat their Imbakbaka while using a force field. In this scenario, the chef tosses the contents of the pot into the air. The force field prevents gravity from bringing the food down to the table. The diners simply scoop up the food dangling in the air with their spoons. With no food hitting the table, the need for dishes disappears. Clean up becomes much easier. This advantage is no small thing to busy restaurant owners. However, the energy needed to maintain these force fields for one chef will use up the energy supply of the entire world. Bummer.


Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on

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