Lebanon holds a certain allure for many of us in the west: we know so little of its rich history but the names alone of the people that shaped the Lebanon's cultural landscape; Egyptians, Persians, ancient Greeks and Ottomans, evoke wonder and romance. In this new book, Hussien Dekmak opens the door to this country's food and traditions with over 100 delicious, authentic recipes that you can cook at home. With emphasis on fresh ingredients and aromatic spices, Lebanese food reflects the healthy Mediterranean diet, with an abundance of fresh vegetables, olive oil, garlic, fish, lamb, chicken and grains. Hussien shows how you can cater for all tastes and appetites by putting different dishes together from chapters on Soups, Salads, Hot and Cold Starters, Main Dishes, Barbecues, and Sweets and Drinks. Discover the secrets behind preparing classic dishes such as creamy hummus, as well as delectable starters like manakeish (flatbread grilled with thyme and sesame seeds) and moutabal (smoky aubergine dip with tahini and lemon juice).
Accompany with ardi shawke bil lahme (artichoke hearts topped with minced lamb, tomatoes and pine nuts) or perhaps shish taouk (cubes of chicken breast marinated and grilled over charcoal) and finish with ashtalieh (Lebanese clotted cream topped with pistachios and sugar syrup). "The Lebanese Cookbook" is an indulgent and inspirational look at this delicious and unique cuisine and is illustrated with sumptuous food photography from Martin Brigdale that brings Lebanese food to life as never before.
Hussien Dekmak was born in Beirut and has been cooking since he was a teenager. He trained at Al Hamra in Shepherd Market, in London's West End, and opened Le Mignon in 1997 - 'an outpost of classic Lebanese cooking in Camden' (Time Out). Hussien sources many of his ingredients such as chickpeas, spices and lentils from Lebanon and goes home two or three times a year. This is his first book.