Cookbook: Falastin by Sami Tamimi and Tara Wigley
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Falastin is a soulful tour of Palestinian cookery today from Ottolenghi's Executive Chef Sami Tamimi, with 120 highly cookable recipes contextualized by his personal narrative of the Palestine he grew up in.
The story of Palestine's food is really the story of its people. When the events of 1948 forced people from all the regions of Palestine together into one compressed land, recipes that were once closely guarded family secrets were shared and passed between different groups in an effort to ensure that they were not lost forever. In Falastin, Tamimi retraces the lineage and evolution of his country's cuisine, born of its agriculturally optimal geography, many distinct regional cooking traditions, and, ultimately, Palestinian cooks' ingenuity and resourcefulness as the country's foodways mingled and morphed. From the recipes of refugee-camp cooks to the home kitchens of Gaza and the mill of a master tahini maker, Tamimi teases out the vestiges of an ancient cuisine while recording the derivations of a dynamic cuisine and the stories of the people of Palestine--as told from the kitchen.
SAMI TAMIMI was born and raised in Jerusalem and was immersed in food from childhood. He started his career as commis-chef in a Jerusalem hotel and worked his way up, through many restaurants and ethnic traditions, to become head chef of Lilith, one of the top restaurants in Tel Aviv in the 1990's. The company now has four stores and two restaurants, NOPI and ROVI, all in central London. As the executive head chef, Sami is involved in developing and nurturing young kitchen talents and creating new dishes and innovative menus. Alongside Yotam Ottolenghi, Sami Tamimi is co-author of two bestselling cookbooks: Ottolenghi: The Cookbook and Jerusalem: A Cookbook.
TARA WIGLEY spent a decade working in publishing--at the Abner Stein Literary Agency in London and then Simon & Schuster--before going to cookery school in Ireland. She has developed, tested, and writen recipes for Ottolenghi's weekly column in the Guardian magazine and monthly New York Times's columns, as well as for his cookbooks. She is the co-author of Ottolenghi Simple (2018), with Yotam Ottolenghi. For Falastin, Tara has travelled with Tamimi in Palestine and eaten her body weight in chickpeas and tahini.
“This is a beautiful book and I want to cook every single recipe in it.”—Nigella Lawson
“Sami Tamimi and Tara Wigley’s beautiful Falastin is a love letter to Palestine—its warm and hospitable people and its bright and mouthwatering cuisine. A cookbook should make you dream, it should invite you to an expanding table, and, more important, it should make you drop everything and head straight to the kitchen. This book does all that. One day I hope to visit Sami’s homeland; but until then, with Sami as my host and Tara as my guide, I’ll let the scents and flavors of the Palestinian kitchen take me there as I pull up extra seats at my table to share this colorful and soulful food with family and friends.”—Naz Deravian, author of Bottom of the Pot
“A stunning collection of recipes and stories that showcase the best of Palestinian culture. I want to eat everything in this book”—Yasmin Khan, author of Zaitoun and The Saffron Tales
“Falastin is not a political book; it’s a people book. But most of all, it’s a cookbook that translates the rich culinary history of traditional Palestine into healthy, vibrant food for the twenty-first-century table.”—177 Milk Street
“[A] celebration of Palestinian cooking . . . Adding to the overall connection between words and stomach are elegant photographs and additional instructions. . . . The temptation to try [all the recipes] is almost overwhelming. Expect enthusiastic demand from home cooks and foodie readers.”—Booklist (starred review)
“[An] expert dive into the food of Palestine. The dishes overflow with bold flavors. . . . Like the best cookbooks, this one opens a window to expand both palates and minds.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"A love letter to palestinian food." — Chatelaine