Cookbook:Sharmoula bil Lahm (Libyan Marinated Meat Sharmoula)

Sharmoula bil Lahm (Libyan Marinated Meat Sharmoula)
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Sharmoula bil lahm is a flavorful Libyan dish featuring marinated meat cooked to perfection. The marinade, known as sharmoula, is made with a combination of aromatic herbs and spices that infuse the meat with a delicious and fragrant taste. It is a popular dish that is often enjoyed during special occasions and gatherings.






  1. In a mixing bowl, combine the minced garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, ground cumin, paprika, coriander, cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper. Mix well to form a smooth marinade.
  2. Add the beef or lamb cubes to the marinade and toss them until they are evenly coated. Ensure that each piece of meat is well covered with the marinade.
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2–4 hours to allow the flavors to meld and the meat to absorb the marinade.
  4. Preheat the grill or grill pan over medium-high heat.
  5. Thread the marinated meat onto skewers, leaving a small gap between each piece.
  6. Place the skewers on the grill or grill pan and cook for approximately 10–15 minutes, turning occasionally, until the meat is cooked to your desired level of doneness.
  7. While grilling, brush any remaining marinade onto the meat for added flavor and moisture.
  8. Once cooked, remove the skewers from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes.
  9. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley or cilantro before serving.

Notes, tips, and variations

  • The marinated meat can also be cooked in the oven under the broiler or in a preheated oven at 200°C (400°F) for about 20–30 minutes, turning halfway through.
  • For a smoky flavor, you can add a pinch of smoked paprika or use a charcoal grill.
  • If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes prior to grilling to prevent them from burning.
  • Sharmoula can also be used to marinate chicken or seafood for a different flavor profile.
  • For a vegetarian option, marinate vegetables such as bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant in the sharmoula marinade, and then grill or roast them until tender.