About the Author
Sabrina Ghayour is one of the strongest voices in Middle Eastern food today. This chef, food writer, and cooking teacher is the charismatic Persian-born host of the popular London supper clubs specializing in Persian and Middle Eastern flavors. With regular appearances on the BBC Good Food Show, Taste London, and more, her work has been featured in numerous publications, including The Times, the Sunday Times, the Evening Standard, the Guardian, the Independent, the Telegraph, Deliciousmagazine, and BBC Good Food magazine.
''A lovingly-written homage to the enchanting dishes of the Middle East. Sabrina Ghayour takes the reader on her magic carpet to the ancient and beautiful lands of rose-scented sherbets...and to a table of abundant feasts, and of honeyed and spiced delights. What a fantastic treasure trove of good food! Within these pages, the cook will find recipes for tagines, soups, stews, salads, and plenty of sweet treats. Through the pages of Persiana, Sabrina delivers the Eastern promise in its delicious, gastronomic form. If you want to eat like an Arabian Knight, then start here...but be sure to stock up on cinnamon, cumin, and coriander...'' --Raymond Blanc
''Sabrina cooks the kind of food I love to eat: lots of flavors distilled out of love and generosity. In this book Sabrina demystifies the use of spices. The Eastern promise is definitely delivered in her book and it will have a place on the shelves of my kitchen.'' --Bruno Loubet
''Sabrina Ghayour is a phenomenal Persian chef.'' --Gizzi Erskine
LIBRARY JOURNAL BEST COOKBOOK OF THE YEAR 2014
THE OBSERVER FOOD MONTHLY'S BEST NEW COOKBOOK 2014
This is Ottolenghi with rocket fuel.
William Sitwell, The Times
This book will delight fans of Ottolenghi-style food.
The loveliest cookbook I've seen in a very long time.
Daily Mail (Ireland))
The most exciting debut cookbook of the year.
The most appetising book. I want to eat every page of it.
Pierre Koffman, 3 Michelin star chef
Persiana...is Sabrina Ghayour's first book and it s crammed full of wonderfully cookable recipes...I d like to cook and eat everything in it...They re very much geared to a modern lifestyle,...Unlike other Middle Eastern cookbooks, this one is easy to decipher, packed with lots of flavour and recipes are surprisingly easy to pull off.
The arrival of her first book, Persiana: Recipes from the Middle East & Beyond, is a boon to those who long to serve their guests bountiful dishes of exotic, glamorous, unfamiliar food with a casual I-just-threw-this-together ...They ll be clamouring for more. And this book, unlike some others, has photographs that show the food clearly.
Sabrina, a self-taught cook, food writer and supper club host, is on a mission to make the flavours of the Middle East accessible. Her recipes are essentially Persian but with influences from Turkish, Arab and Armenian cuisines.
BBC Good Food Magazine
This wonderful Persian-born chef is a master of the Middle East and her book is sumptuous, thrilling, learned and downright brilliant.
Tom Parker-Bowles, food writer and broadcaster, Mail on Sunday
Persiana stands alone as a brilliant work of creativity... a captivating work.
John and Sally McKenna s Guides
Middle Eastern food is all the rage, so this book is timely. Khayour brings authentic recipes up to date using a handful of simple, easily acquired ingredients. Plenty of inspiration.
The self-taught cook s first tome helps demystify traditional Persian cuisine...Despite her no-nonsense nature, Ghayour demonstrates that [with] ease...it s possible to create exquisitely colorful dishes, with big, bold flavors, even when your budget is tight and you re forced to raid your store cupboard...Ghayour s Persian guide has no airs or graces. It s full of the cook s own passion; her love for each dish, whether it is steeped in Persian heritage or created in her own kitchen, shines through. You ll never look at a kebab in the same way again. --Glam UK
A quiet gem
One of the current generation of uncategorizable European "food creatives," London-based Sabrina Ghayour writes, teaches and hosts supper clubs, all the while staunchly advocating for the Persian cuisine she had to teach herself despite growing up surrounded by it. Fortunately for those on the hunt for dried black limes, Persian food has been at the crest of a rising tide of Middle Eastern books these past few years. Ghayour interpets the many species of rice dishes and long-simmered stews in a way that's more approachable than what you'll find in traditional Persian cookbooks; when she ventures elsewhere in the Mediterranean (bastillas, kebabs, baklava, tabbouleh) she paves the way with smart substitutions and thoughtful headnotes. And she remains true to her palette pomegranate, dates, barberries, saffron, pistachio, dill even when experimenting with Western forms (as in pistachio-rose-raspberry madeleines). All in all, Persiana stands out as a quiet gem amid many more widely recognized but ultimately less useful Middle Eastern cookbooks released this year. --NPR Best Cookbooks of 2014
I ve come down with a strange disease for which their may be no cure. Call it a case of the creeping Ottolenghis.
Ever since I started cooking from British chef and cookbook writer Yotam Ottolenghi s phenomenal Plenty a couple of years ago, I ve found my tastes shifting gradually eastward. I'm reaching for feta and mint instead of mozzarella and basil. Rice and whole grains are taking the place of dried pasta. And I m buying tahineh and yogurt in what seems like industrial quantities.
Still, even as my dinners are becoming progressively lighter, brighter and more herbaceous, I find myself wanting to push even further into the cooking of the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East.
Fortunately, it seems the Ottolenghi effect has not escaped the notice of the publishing industry either here or in Britain. Four cookbooks have crossed my desk recently that go beyond the yogurt curtain.
Any of them would make a terrific gift for anyone on your list who has been similarly infected.
When I interviewed Ottolenghi for a Live Talks L.A. program this fall, he singled out Persiana by Sabrina Ghayour as one book he was especially excited about. Selected as the best cookbook of 2014 by Observer Food Monthly, it has just been published in the U.S. by Interlink Books.
It s easy to see why Ottolenghi is so excited about it. Ghayour s food is both sophisticated and approachable a tough line to tread, particularly with cuisines and ingredients that might be unfamiliar. But consider a dish like her tagine of lamb, butternut squash, prune and tamarind it's just 11 ingredients including spices, but the flavors jump off the page. Even simpler and maybe even more compelling shrimp sauteed after a quick marination in sumac, cilantro, lemon and garlic. --Russ Parsons, LA Times