Fresh, healthy, vegetarian eating at Nuba

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      On a rainy November evening, I found myself at Nuba's Kitsilano location. It was nice to be in a mellow environment devoid of a lot of background noise and jarring music.

      I had vegetables on my mind and the server noted that they had some new non-meat specials for the night.

      I ordered a three-dip hummus combo—spinach and feta, squash with cinnamon, and roasted red pepper—that came with pita bread for $12.95.

      A three-dip hummus combo included spinach and feta.

      It all tasted fresh and not bland or boring. My fave was the spinach and feta, in part because spinach is such a superfood.

      This is not the only indication that Nuba is cranking up its vegetarian dishes. On its Facebook page, it recently announced a new plant-based entrée.

      Yam Kibbeh Meshwi ($19.95) is described this way: "Grilled kibbeh pie with yams, caramelized shallots, baby kale and spinach, and chickpeas. Served with citrus tabbouleh and almond tarator sauce."

      Sounds like an ideal dish to follow Nuba's Fattoush salad!

      Lebanese cuisine has a rich history of vegetarian dishes.

      The fertile soil in the northern part of the country and the Beqaa Valley produces a wide range of herbs and vegetables that are generously used in Lebanese cooking. They're often prepared with garlic, olive oil, and copious amounts of freshly squeezed lemon juice, which adds some zip to the meals.

      It's fair to say that vegetables are the heart and soul of the Lebanese kitchen.