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Sally Prosser, food blogger at mycustardpie
I’ve lived in the Middle East for over 20 years and over that time I've tried to gain a greater understanding of the region. This has been through a variety of books primarily non-fiction, some fiction (The rock of Tanios by Amin Malouf is highly recommended). My other source as been through books about food and cookery to make sense of this multilayered feast that stretches from the olive groves of the Levant to the fish based diets of the Gulf. Some dishes have a similar expression across many countries, some totally unique and understanding the reasons behind this (climate, economics, tradition, ritual) is key to a deeper knowledge of the region and why it's pretty vague to say Middle Eastern food (as general and unhelpful as the term European food). Dima's book (to me) has not yet reached my kitchen. It's been beside my bed telling tales of food, cooking and life, giving a very different and human perspective from a displaced nation, and a foil to the images conjured up in most people's minds, from the West particularly, when they hear the word Palestine. Claudia Roden's book came with me to Saudi Arabia in 1995 and I've recommended it to everyone who comes to the Middle East. Plated Heirlooms is now its partner in recommended reading. Even though I haven't tested the recipes I have tasted Dima's food so have confidence that these will deliver... in spades.
I’ve lived in the Middle East for over 20 years and over that time I've tried to gain a greater understanding of the region. This has been through a variety of books primarily non-fiction, some fiction (The rock of Tanios by Amin Malouf is highly recommended). My other source as been through books about food and cookery to make sense of this multilayered feast that stretches from the olive groves of the Levant to the fish based diets of the Gulf.

Some dishes have a similar expression across many countries, some totally unique and understanding the reasons behind this (climate, economics, tradition, ritual) is key to a deeper knowledge of the region and why it's pretty vague to say Middle Eastern food (as general and unhelpful as the term European food).

Dima's book (to me) has not yet reached my kitchen. It's been beside my bed telling tales of food, cooking and life, giving a very different and human perspective from a displaced nation, and a foil to the images conjured up in most people's minds, from the West particularly, when they hear the word Palestine.

Claudia Roden's book came with me to Saudi Arabia in 1995 and I've recommended it to everyone who comes to the Middle East. Plated Heirlooms is now its partner in recommended reading. Even though I haven't tested the recipes I have tasted Dima's food so have confidence that these will deliver... in spades.