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Vegetarian Dishes from the Middle East Hardcover – 5 Jun 2008


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Grub Street (5 Jun. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1902304810
  • ISBN-13: 978-1902304816
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 17.8 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 14,962 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

Review

I found it hard to put this hard-backed recipe book down. My eye was instantly drawn to Suma-flavoured kufta, a traditional recipe from Southern Turkey consisting of bulgur, fresh herbs and finely chopped vegetables; the addition of sumac powder lifts the dish out of the ordinary. The lack of any photographs does not detract from the appeal of this book which will give a real boost to any vegetarian food enthusiast looking for something a little more unusual. For example, take 20 lemons, salt, paprika, and olive oil, follow the method and after 4 weeks you have beautiful orange-coloured lemons in oil to use as a pickle. The origins of these recipes are diverse and include Iran, Turkey, Armenia, Greece, The Lebanon and more. --The Vegetarian

About the Author

Arto der Haroutunian was born in Aleppo, Syria in 1940 and grew up in the Levant, but came to England with his parents as a child and remained here for most of his life. He studied architecture at Manchester University and established a career designing restaurants, clubs and hotels. In 1970, in partnership with his brother, he opened the first Armenian restaurant in Manchester which eventually became a successful chain of six restaurants and two hotels. Given his passion for cooking it was a natural progression that he should then begin to write cookery books as they combined his love of food with his great interest in the history and culture of the region. It was his belief that the rich culinary tradition of the Middle East is the main source of many of our Western cuisines and his books were intended as an introduction to that tradition. All the many cookbooks written by Der Haroutunian have now been out of print for many years and second hand copies fetch hundreds of pounds. He died in 1987 at the untimely age of 47. He is survived by his wife and son who still live in Manchester. As well as his passion for cooking, Arto der Haroutunian was a painter of international reputation who exhibited all over the world. His other interests included composing music and translating Turkish, Arab, Persian and Armenian authors. He was a true polymath.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By S. Alai on 1 Nov. 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is one of the first cookbooks about middle eastern cookery (or any cuisine) that combined interesting and informative points about history and culture to give a real flavour of the middle east. The recipes are easy to follow, work really well and use ingredients easily available in the UK. Those adapted from recipes with meat into vegetarian recipes, are delicious and do not leave you feeling you need a meat accompaniment. My friends all enjoy the food and want to buy copies of the book. Alas, it seems to be out of print and I only have a second-hand copy. It's about time the publisher issued a reprint, as no changes are needed to this perfect book.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Benny Scholes on 26 July 2008
Format: Hardcover
Arto der Harotounian's book is far more than a collection of recipes - it is an introduction to the culture of the Middle East.

The recipes themselves - backed up with serving suggestions, proverbs, anecdotes and reminiscences - sound mouth-watering and are easy to follow.

The author's obvious love of his subject makes this book a delight.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Caroline on 15 May 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I can't really add anything new here, but just to second 'girl on a bus' on how the recipes can look so similiar but taste so different. Also like others I'd have loved pictures, and I usually avoid cookbooks with no photos, but even so this book is well worth having. The recipes are no fuss, short ingredients lists and simple techniques, this is everyday coooking but with interesting flavours. I tend to grab this book off the shelf on those days when I think I haven't anything in and somehow I'll find something I can make. It's great for using store cupboard items like pulses and grains and if you only have just one or two veggies in the house then you'll find something to use them in, provided you have a selection of herbs and spices available of course. A useful addition.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By E. L. Wisty TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Aug. 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A wide ranging collection of vegetarian recipes, from the Caucasus, Turkey, the Arab countries & Israel, and Iran, collected by the late Arto de Haroutunian, who by all accounts seems to have been a very talented chap in a number of fields. We get here not only plenty of classics such as mutabal and imam bayildi, but some very modern and up-to-date dishes too. There are quite a few things here which I have not previously seen in my large collection of middle-eastern cookbooks.

This publication has a couple of negatives for me. Firstly the lack of any photography. OK, in a book this size and this many recipes it could end up being an infeasibly large book, but I always like to see what I am trying to make, as well as it being an aid to choosing candidate dishes to make when you are flicking through - appearance is as important as taste for me when composing menus. The latter issue of difficulty choosing easily while flicking through is compounded a bit by the use of a 'quasi-Armenian' font in a light green colour in the recipe titles which is sometimes hard to read.

Nevertheless despite my gripes, this is a good resource and a welcome addition to the bookshelf of anyone cooking Middle Eastern food, whether an old hand like me or a newcomer to the region's cuisine.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By P. Couch on 18 April 2009
Format: Hardcover
I ordered this book and when it first arrived I was disappointed that there were no photos and on flicking through the recipes I thought 'what a cheat' just lots of similar salads and recipes remixed again and again. However when I actually started cooking form the book I had to eat my words. What wonderfully simple dishes that are so delicately flavoured, the subtle variations of ingredients in each recipe really do create a totally different dish. I LOVE THIS BOOK and eat form it all the time. SO delicious, SO simple and SO healthy to boot!
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By S. Simmons on 8 July 2008
Format: Hardcover
A great and refreshingly different vegetarian cookery book. Beautifully presented with fantastic, easy to follow recipes for authentic, substantial and very tasty food which is out of the usual veggie cookbook norm. A great one for a dinner party menu with a difference. I would definately recommend this as a great pressie to buy for someone, vegetarian or not!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By V. Simonian on 29 July 2008
Format: Hardcover
A must in every food enthusiast's kitchen. The recipes are simple and from a multicultural and multisocial part of the world. Serving a combination of dishes from the different cultures brings harmony to the table, to the eys and to the tastebuds. Very informative and easy to follow recipes. Arto shows a deep understanding of the cultures of the region. I look forward to the publication of his other books.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By FRANCO on 9 July 2008
Format: Hardcover
What a fabulous book - not only for it's easy to follow & interesting recipes but the taste is something else!
Love the illustrations & quirky comments too.
How refreshing to find something completely different but where you don't feel you have to be an Egon Ronay Chef to achieve the results.
Can't wait for more to be published!
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