Customer Review

37 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest ethnic cookbooks of all time, 20 Dec 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen: A Culinary Journey Through Syria, Lebanon and Jordan (Hardcover)
Bitter experience has taught me not to put much faith in rave reviews of cookbooks. I must admit, however, that both of the previous customer reviews of this book are absolutely on target. Recipes and Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterrnean Kitchen is one of the greatest cookbooks I have ever used and is unquestionably the best in its subject area. Fascinating text and fabulous recipes make this inspired volume a must for anyone interested in Middle Eastern cooking. The author gives such clear and easy-to-follow directions that I have not had a failure yet. Recently I gave a dinner party using recipes from this book, and it was a huge success. People are still raving about Uvezian's Hummus with Red Pepper Paste, Damascus-Style Cheese Dip with Toasted Sesame Seeds and Nigella, Tabbuleh, Fried Stuffed Kibbeh, Baklava, Aleppan Wedding Cookies, and, last but not least, her Mulled Pomegranate Wine Punch.
Some other favourites of mine from this book include Hummus with Mixed Spices, Toasted Nuts, and Mint (battle-weary hummus gets a new lease on life); Yogurt Cheese Dip with Red Pepper Paste (Muhammara Labna) (Uvezian's version is in a class by itself); Orange, Lemon, and Onion Salad with Black Olives and Mint (full of beguiling contrasts); Lentil Soup with Swiss Chard and Potatoes (earthy and deeply satisfying); Baked Fish with Tomato Sauce Garnished with Sautéed Pine Nuts, Raisins, and Onions (seduces both eye and palate); Chicken, Pepper, and Tomato Kebabs (Shish Tawuq) (a popular restaurant dish that is simple to prepare at home); Musakhan (this easily made version beats all others I've tried); Quail or Cornish Hens with Sour Cherry Sauce (I'll spare you a stream of inadequate adjectives); Crown Roast of Lamb Served with Saffron Rice with Ground Meat and Toasted Nuts (perfect for a special occasion); Grilled Skewered Pork with Sour Plum Sauce (as splendid as it is simple); Potato Kibbeh (delightfully different); Apricots Stuffed with Meat (unusual and exquisite); Grilled Eggplant with Walnut Sauce (now I know why those Georgian recipes in other books that call for "vinegar or pomegranate juice" did not work when I tried them); Mixed Vegetable Casserole with Garlic and Herbs (excellent as a light vegetarian entrée or as an accompaniment to poultry or meat); Stuffed Prunes in Pomegranate Sauce (wonderful with poultry or game); Pita Bread (absolutely first rate! the best recipe I've found); Filo Pastry Triangles with Cheese Filling (I could eat these every day of my life!); Knafi with Nut or Cheese Filling (a stellar dessert, fully the equal of baklava); Ma`mul (these stuffed cookies deserve their popularity); Gh'rayba (butter cookies with a difference); Sesame Cookies (Barazik) (altogether addictive); Orange Cake with Pomegranate Syrup (a brilliant combination); Quince Compote (unforgettable!); Pomegranate Ice (ravishing!); and Sweetened Yogurt Cream (Uvezian's own creation and a godsend for calorie counters).
Since acquiring Recipes and Remembrances I have purchased Uvezian's wonderful yogurt book and was fortunate to find a copy of her fantastic appetizer book, which is, sadly, out of print. How I wish that I had discovered the works of this talented food writer many years ago!
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