The Scent of Pomegranates and Rose Water (Kobo eBook)

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144 recipes; 32 food photographs.

There has been a number of Syrian-themed cookbooks published in the last few years, but this one is perhaps the most authentic to be published. The principal author, Syrian-born Habeeb Salloum, is 93 years old (!) and has spent the last thirty years obsessed with uncovering Syrian recipes from the 18th and 19th centuries that have never been available before in English (and in some cases, have never been published in Arabic either).

It goes without saying that Syria is a nation under siege, and whose people have been at the forefront of the international immigration emergency. For Habeeb and his daughters Leila and Muna (his co-authors), their heartbreak over their homeland’s troubles has instigated them to pull together the many centuries-old recipes they’ve uncovered and rescued, as both a tribute to their home country, and as a way to honor their past traditions through the universal language of food.

Habeeb Salloum and his daughters visited Syria on many occasions as part of their deep interest in the history of Syrian cooking. What they discovered was an absence of information from the 18th and 19th centuries when Syria was under harsh Ottoman rule; as they dug deeper and interviewed elders, they learned that there was a vast Syrian cuisine, influenced by the Ottoman Empire’s reach into Persia, the Arab world, and the Byzantine Empire, that had largely been forgotten by Syrian residents today.

Recent Syrian cookbooks have focused on contemporary dishes, street food, or dishes focused on specific ingredients. Pomegranates and Rose Water is arguably the most authentic of these cookbooks, featuring recipes that many Syrians may not have heard of, as well as versions of others that many, including non-Syrians, will know.

Recipes are largely heart-healthy, boasting Mediterranean diet-style components, with lots of beans, fish, vegetables, and fruits. Syrian cuisine is also very sensory; aroma and texture are as important as taste and nutrition.

The authors have honored the traditions of these historical recipes but have also adapted them to include modern kitchen appliances for the 21st century cook. (Information on how recipes were prepared in earlier centuries is included in sidebars.)

The authors are well versed on the history of Syrian cooking, as well as the state of the Syrian immigration crisis, so will make great interview subjects.

144 recipes; 32 food photographs.

Publicity by Elissa Buchter, Schmooze PR (New York).

Product Details
ISBN-13: 9781551527437
Publisher: Arsenal Pulp Press
Publication Date: November 19th, 2018
Language: