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Cuisine of the Eastern Mediterranean

by Silvena Rowe

Pub Date: June 14th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-06-207159-0
Publisher: Ecco/HarperCollins

Sensual recipes designed to inspire a passion for Eastern Mediterranean cuisine.

Rowe (Feasts, 2009) pays homage to the renowned chefs of the Ottoman Empire who prized food for its sensual attributes: taste, smell, color and texture. According to the author, the Sultans were one of the great foodie cultures, often employing kitchen staffs of 1,300 that adapted and integrated the intriguing flavors they found along the Spice Road. Rowe’s cookbook covers what was once the domain of the Ottomans—the regions of Syria, Turkey, Lebanon and even Bulgaria, where Rowe was born. Each recipe is spiced up with a history lesson or a travel memory. To make it easier to picture both the food and the locale, Rowe sprinkles the book with gorgeous photographs. Her recipes are as exotic as they are rich and complex in flavor, making use of such ingredients as rose petals, pomegranate molasses, Aleppo peppers, nigella seeds and spices like sumac and the incredibly aromatic Baharat. While it may be hard to find the ingredients for the Partridge Dolma or the kadaifi pastry for the Basil and Kadaifi-Wrapped Shrimp with Pine Nut Tarator, Rowe doesn’t make excuses or offer Americanized substitutions. She provides a glossary, but the rest is up to the curious, resourceful cook.

Discover a new culinary tradition that evokes a fascinating time and place.