Series: Hippocrene International Cookbooks
Paperback: 292 pages
Publisher: Hippocrene Books (January 1, 2000)
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #94,130 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #38 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Regional & International > Middle Eastern #177 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Asian Cooking
This book is one of the finest examples I've seen of comprehensive cuisine coverage. True, the Afghan cuisine isn't that extensive, the list of ingredients used is short and techniques are simple, but until now, it was impossible to find such an accurate and authentic source of information (even on the internet - try it yourself :-) ).As for accuracy, I've tried 4 recipes from the book so far and they were all at least as good as anything I've had in New York City Afghan restaurants.My only complaint is that there are no pictures at all - maybe this makes the book less expensive, but I kind of like a cookbook to have at least some aesthetic value.
I am an American married to an Afghan and this book has made it possible for me to cook all of my husbands favorite dishes. I also now am able to cook for my two boys Chris and Jon so when they visit relatives they can appreciate the food of their culture. Many of the dishes I take to parties ie: buranee, chalow's and oh yes, the kebobs! I have heard "through the grape vine" and having been told by MANY of my Afghan relatives that I cook like "back home". This really makes me proud and I am sure for my husband too. The recipes are simple and easy to prepare. Helen has taken all the mystery out of afghan cooking ! Helen tasha kure. Great Job !ThanksMarie - Sonoma, California
Having lived in Afghanistan many,many years ago this book was a great way to fulfill my nostalgic yearnings. I've often thought of Afghan food as the ultimate "comfort" food, but since I had a cook while I lived in Kabul, I never personally prepared any Afghan dishes. I do however, know when something tastes "right" and everything I've tried from this book has hit the mark so far. Tashakor, Helen!
Like the reader from Sonoma, I am also an American married to an Afghan. I always tease him and tell others that I married him for his food. We live a few states away from his family so if I want my favorite Afghan foods I have to cook them myself - which is what I can do now. My husband and I are quite pleased with the results so far. And the background into the Afghan culture and customs the author provides is an added bonus. It's neat because there are "answers" to questions that I've asked his sisters and they didn't know - they just do what Mom, Grandma, Great-Grandma... do/did.
WoW!!! What a wonderful book! I was born in Afghanistan but have been living in California for the past 18 years. Since I left Afghanistan when I was only 2 years old, I don't have much memories but was raised with the great value of the Afghan culture. My mom is the best Afghan cook ever but when I try to learn from her, it is very difficult because she doesn't use exact measurements. It's usually a handful of this or a pinch of that... This is the first book I have found that makes it SO easy to follow and cook the best food in the world. The best part is- it's in plain english! I enjoyed it so much that I bought 2 more for my older sisters. Yum Yum Yum! THANKS HELEN!!!
Reading all of these favorable reviews, I bought this book and couldn't wait to try out the recipes. The first one I tried making was the chicken kebabs which came out tasteless. I love Afghani rice, it is so flavorful so I tried the basic pilau recipe which came out bland and undercooked even though I followed the directions exactly. I am not encouraged to try out the other recipes after such terrible results. I don't think the author has really tested these recipes to make sure the measurements and instructions will produce the intended results. There are no pictures and the format of the book is bound more like a novel than a cookbook making it hard to refer to while cooking.
A small paperback, this book is a great introduction to Afghan cooking. The author, married to an Afghan, gives us in insider's view of the culture too. Recipes are practical. Afghan names of ingredients are Dari (Afghan Persian) rather than Pashto. Nice line illustrations.
I just can't say enough good things about this book!! My husband has fond memories of going to restaurants with his father and having delicious food. I wanted to be able to recreate those memories. I began searching the Internet for Afghan cookbooks and recipes nearly 10 years ago. I finally found this book, in its first edition, yet was not able to obtain a copy. After finding Helen Saberi through the Internet, she informed me that her book was coming out in second print. I waited nearly a year for it! And it is well worth the wait. Helen's recipes are more authentic than others that I have found; others have been "westernized". While she may have substitute ingredients, I think she stays true to the original recipes. The directions are easy to follow - you can't go wrong. The snippets of culture and history and background of spices just add to the flavor of the book. I continue to delight family and friends with these delicious Afghan dishes.
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