This is my favorite cook book…..




A new book of Middle Eastern Food by Claudia Roden.


Except it’s not a new book at all. My mother bought it at a “boot sale” for £1, which is kind of a garage sale out of the trunk of your car. You have to be there……


She gave me this book in the late 70s or early 80s, can’t remember exactly. The author Claudia Roden is an Egyptian Jew, like my father was. Maybe that’s why mother bought it?

It was first written in 1968 and published in 1972. Such an amazing soft cover book with no photos. Just full of delicious recipes of Middle Eastern food from many countries as well as some dishes from North Africa, particularly Morocco.

Reading through her recipes almost lets you taste the succulent flavors of her dishes. The smell from the assortment of spices….

When my mother first gave me this book most of the ingredients were so difficult to find outside of Israel and the Middle East but now they are no longer considered exotic. You can buy most of them everywhere.

She wrote little stories with some of her recipes and I think that was part of why I loved reading them. Also many of the recipes were the same as my grandmother’s. I still look through this book while drinking a cup of coffee in the afternoon on my upstairs balcony or on the patio on a nice day. I wonder if the reason I now like to write little stories with my recipes on my blog is perhaps derived from her book? Never thought about it before but maybe…

To think that today everyone enhances their recipes with beautifully tempting photos (including myself) and this little soft cover has none...

There have been 3 more editions published after this original book came out, now with gorgeous photos, but I like mine.

It still is the best cook book I ever had. And my mum gave it to me….

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