Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen: A Culinary Journey through Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan

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9780970971692: Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen: A Culinary Journey through Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan
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Located in the very heart of the eastern Mediterranean, the area comprising Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan has provided the world with what is considered by many to be Arab food at its best. In this landmark, one-of-a-kind volume Sonia Uvezian gives this time-honored cuisine the kind of presentation it truly deserves. Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen is a revelatory work rich in personal reminiscences; insightful quotations, anecdotes, and proverbs; valuable information on ingredients, utensils, daily meals, and traditions; and evocative period illustrations.

Sonia Uvezian’s many memories and associations establish a sense of place and emotional pull rarely encountered in Middle Eastern culinary literature. The “eastern Mediterranean kitchen” in the title is actually that of her family’s summer home in the Bekaa Valley as well as the one in their Beirut apartment. It is where the Uvezians prepared the food they grew themselves or bought from nearby farms, orchards, and markets.

Written by one of the world’s foremost authorities on Middle Eastern and Caucasian cooking and over two decades in the making, this is a fascinating and highly original book imbued with a keen sense of historical perspective and a deep respect for the region’s cultural heritage. Few cookbook authors have approached their subjects with the thorough, painstaking research reflected in this work. A profound understanding of eastern Mediterranean food shines through in its hundreds of superb, clearly written recipes, which are often preceded by illuminating introductory remarks. From the definitive and much-needed section on pomegranates and pomegranate molasses through the fabulous chapters on desserts and beverages, this book provides indispensable reading for anyone interested in the cookery and culture of Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan. Like the author’s groundbreaking classics, The Cuisine of Armenia and Cooking from the Caucasus, which were among the first to bring Middle Eastern and Caucasian cooking to America, it is long on such traditional dishes as tabbouleh and baklava but also includes innovations, among them Damascus-Style Cheese Dip with Toasted Sesame Seeds and Nigella and Grilled Quail with Sour Cherry Sauce.

Timeless and timely, Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen is a welcome blend of scholarship and entertaining reading. A genuine contribution to culinary literature that has achieved the status of a classic, it will be a treasured addition to the library of anyone interested in Middle Eastern cooking.

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About the Author:

Sonia Uvezian was born and brought up in Beirut, Lebanon. A leading authority on Middle Eastern and Caucasian cooking and the winner of a James Beard Award, she is the author of six other highly acclaimed cookbooks, including "The Cuisine of Armenia", "Cooking from the Caucasus", and "The Book of Yogurt". Several of her books have been selections of Book-of-the-Month Club and published internationally. Ms. Uvezian has also contributed articles and recipes to Gourmet, Bon Appétit, Vogue, and numerous other publications.

Review:

"Sonia Uvezian's family had for generations operated a caravan from southern Anatolia to Beirut. In this handsomely produced and well-illustrated book, she covers every aspect of the cuisine of Syria, Lebanon and Jordan, but draws particularly on her youth in Beirut, then a place of great sophistication and plenty, and the family's summer house and garden in the Bekaa Valley...Uvezian recalls hard-working summers in the Bekaa, with all the pickling and preserving to be done, but there are also lyrical descriptions of bicycling through vineyards and orchards and stopping to savor freshly caught and grilled trout at a local restaurant. A leisurely feel prevails throughout this evocative book, which puts the cuisine in the context of the culture, and at the same time gives simple, straightforward and practical recipes demonstrating the variety and richness of the ingredients." --Rosemary Butler-Cole, The Times Literary Supplement (London), March 16, 2001

"The author, originally from Lebanon, has already acquired an enviable reputation for good writing on food (for example The Cuisine of Armenia)...Drawing on her recollections of food in the Eastern Mediterranean, and digging deep into the extensive literature of travelers in the region, she has produced a book which I have found quite irresistible. There is a wealth of recipes, skillfully embedded in their historical contexts. The illustrations (many of the 19th century) are evocative and the quotations from a wide variety of sources constitute one of the best collections I have ever seen in a book about food...An exciting journey for which one could wish no better guide." --Alan Davidson, Petits Propos Culinaires, April, 2000

"Sonia Uvezian is one of the world's leading experts on Middle Eastern and Caucasian cuisines and the author of several works on the cookery of Armenia and the Caucasus. Recipes and Remembrances could very well be the seminal work on the cooking of the Eastern Mediterranean and fills a long-standing void of scholarly works on the subject...It is a title that should reside in the collection of every serious cook or culinary historian. The research and work that went into the production of this entertaining and informative cookbook is astounding. But the true prize of Recipes and Remembrances is the range and depth of the incredibly delicious food the hundreds of clearly written, easy to follow recipes will produce." --Mick Vann, the Austin Chronicle, November 26, 1999

"The incredible research that has gone into this book by well-known author Sonia Uvezian makes it as much a history book as a cookbook...A wondrous addition to any cook's library." --Ginger Johnston, The Portland Oregonian, December 11, 2001

"A full array of dishes known and unknown to Americans...From clotted cream to pomegranate sauce, tabbouleh, and baklava, the recipes are entwined with history, both ancient and modern, as well as cultural and geographical influences." --New Orleans Times-Picayune, October 5, 2000

"This highly original cookbook offers a complete spectrum of culinary delights. In addition to hundreds of superb recipes, it includes illuminating essays on a variety of topics ranging from hospitality and meals to ingredients and utensils." --The Midwest Book Review, November, 1999

"This is an important and valuable addition to the Middle Eastern cooking shelf, full of informative short essays on such topics as hospitality and pomegranate molasses as well as hundreds of recipes, some unusual, that readers have praised very highly...But it is the anecdotes, proverbs, quotations from old travel accounts and, above all, the author's commentary that account for the nostalgic charm that may be this book's greatest virtue." --Aramco World, March/April, 2000

"Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen...is an indispensable resource for the food of Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. History plays a large part in the text, the scholarly research has left little out and the collection of recipes with extensive background notes makes it a thoroughly useful book." --Laurine Jacobs, cuisine.co.nz, 2003

"Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen by Sonia Uvezian is a first-class retrospective cookbook. This intelligently written book is one of the best examples I have seen of a cookbook living up to its full potential. It's a cookbook, yes, yet it's somehow more than a collection of past and present recipes. It is a reflection of a people who put hospitality above their own wants and desires...The author is Lebanese and knows the Eastern Mediterranean well. She thoroughly explains how the history, geography and cultural influences converged to shape the region's food and traditions. With the increasingly disturbing news from Syria, this cookbook is now more relevant than ever." Culinarialibris.com (UK), March 5, 2012

"A masterpiece! This first and last word on eastern Mediterranean cooking is sure to become a classic." --Kerri Katz, booksforcooks.com, Fall, 1999

"This handsomely produced and well-illustrated book...puts the cuisine in the context of the culture... Lyrical...evocative...practical." --Rosemary Butler-Cole, The Times Literary Supplement (London), March 16, 2001

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780970971685: Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen: A Culinary Journey through Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0970971680 ISBN 13:  9780970971685
Publisher: The Siamanto Press, 2004
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9780292785359: Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen: A Culinary Journey Through Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan

Univ o..., 1999
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