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Taste of Persia: A Cook's Travels…

Taste of Persia: A Cook's Travels Through Armenia, Azerbaijan,… (2016)

by Naomi Duguid

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1084170,017 (3.96)2



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Food of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, and Kurdistan.
Introduction: Includes maps and a section entitled "cuisines without borders." Also a glossary (which includes food) and annotated bibliography. There is so much history and culture spread throughout this book and within the recipes. It's a delight to read.
Photos: Gorgeous. Photos of locales, foods, and finished recipes.
Recipes: Easy to follow, with alternative cooking methods mentioned. ( )
  tldegray | Sep 21, 2018 |
Gorgeously illustrated cookbook covering authentic everyday cuisine from ‘Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran and Kurdistan.’

The recipes were the type you could believe people would make everyday, nothing too fabricated or fancied up. They just seemed authentic and realizable. Though it feels odd to describe recipes as realizable, anyone who has read about a cuisine that they are not familiar with and felt completely baffled will (hopefully) recognize the sentiment.

The books includes recipes for breads, meats, grains, sweets, vegetables and beverages. Also, the book is filled with personal stories and experiences surrounding travelling in the area and common everyday life, which lends richness and complexity. This is more than just a collection of recipes, it is a small cross-section of the region culturally.

I definitely found appealing recipes to try, that were plant based, or could easily be changed to plant based, and I am looking forward to trying them out.

**eARC Netgalley**

( )
  Critterbee | Apr 16, 2018 |
Ms Duguid's starting point for this book is the Persian kingdom of Darius the Great and his father Cyrus 486 BCE. She contends that the 5 countries of the book's focus (and Kurdisan isn't a country yet, BTW) are tied together not by any cultural or linguistic features but by Persian influenced food. Well, I am writing this today from Erbil (Arbil, Irbil,Hewler), capital of the devolved Kurdish Region of Iraq that may someday become Kurdistan, and I think that Ms Duguid is reaching too far, in particular by downplaying the eastward and westward sweeps of culture as Persia was subsequently conquered by the Greeks under Alexander the Great, the rise of the Armenian Empire that reached its peak in 69 BCE, the more recent Ottoman Empire that reached its peak in 1683, and the Soviet Union that absorbed Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia in the 20th century. I have worked and eaten my way across this region (and studied a couple of the languages) and I do not see the Persian link she sees. As a matter of fact, I am astonished sometimes by the differences in everyday foods across some of these borders – for example, the dumpling line, which seems to stretch along western Iran. East of the line steamed or boiled veg and non-veg dumplings (manti, vereniki, pelmeni) are common, here in Kurdistan and onward west to ravioli country they are not to be found. Certainly the people of the region do not see a Persian link in their foodways. Climate, topography, agriculture, and trade have been far more important.

The resulting book is a hodgepodge of recipes (some of which are quite important within their cultural context) and quite a lot of descriptive text that tries to forge a coherent story of really quite disparate cuisines.

I received a review copy of "Taste of Persia: A Cook's Travels Through Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, and Kurdistan" by Naomi Duguid (Artisan) through NetGalley.com. ( )
1 vote Dokfintong | Dec 31, 2016 |
A wonderful jewel of a cookery book!
The author's descriptions of the country and the ingredients used in the dishes she makes are mouthwatering to say the least.
Very highly recommended.
I was given a digital copy of this book by the publisher Artisan via Netgalley in return for an honest unbiased review. ( )
  Welsh_eileen2 | Sep 27, 2016 |
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"Though the countries in the Persian culinary region are home to diverse religions, cultures, languages, and politics, they are linked by beguiling food traditions and a love for the fresh and the tart. Color and spark come from ripe red pomegranates, golden saffron threads, and the fresh herbs served at every meal. Grilled kebabs, barbari breads, pilafs, and brightly colored condiments are everyday fare, as are rich soup-stews called ash and alluring sweets like rose water pudding and date-nut halvah. Our ambassador to this tasty world is the incomparable Naomi Duguid, who, for more than 20 years, has been bringing us exceptional recipes and mesmerizing tales from regions seemingly beyond our reach"--

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