A New Yorker, Guardian, BookRiot, Kitchn, KCRW, and Literary Hub Best Cookbook of the Year
A dazzling celebration of Palestinian cuisine, featuring more than 80 modern recipes, captivating stories and stunning travel photography.
Yasmin Khan unlocks the flavors and fragrances of modern Palestine, from the sun-kissed pomegranate stalls of Akka, on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, through evergreen oases of date plantations in the Jordan Valley, to the fading fish markets of Gaza City.
Palestinian food is winningly fresh and bright, centered around colorful mezze dishes that feature the region’s bountiful eggplants, peppers, artichokes, and green beans; slow-cooked stews of chicken and lamb flavored with Palestinian barahat spice blends; and the marriage of local olive oil with earthy za’atar, served in small bowls to accompany toasted breads. It has evolved over several millennia through the influences of Arabic, Jewish, Armenian, Persian, Turkish, and Bedouin cultures and civilizations that have ruled over, or lived in, the area known as ancient Palestine.
In each place she visits, Khan enters the kitchens of Palestinians of all ages and backgrounds, discovering the secrets of their cuisine and sharing heartlifting stories.
About the Author
Yasmin Khan is food and travel writer, broadcaster, and human rights campaigner based in London. She is the author of two cookbooks, The Saffron Tales and Zaitoun.
Yasmin Khan draws on her vast experience as a storyteller, cook, human rights activist, itinerant traveler and writer to create a moving, empathetic, hugely knowledgeable and utterly delicious book.
— Anthony Bourdain
A big bowlful of delicious Palestinian recipes, plus lots of insightful and moving stories.
— Yotam Ottolenghi
This is the best kind of cookbook, one which tells you about people through the stories of their food. Compelling reading, gorgeous pictures—and the most delicious recipes. I can’t wait to start cooking.
— Ruth Reichl
Yasmin Khan is a human rights campaigner and storyteller as well as a recipe writer, and the three strands of her work are illuminatingly woven into this, her new book, Zaitoun, an important collection of recipes and stories from the Palestinian kitchen. This is a politically engaged and hungry travelogue, and it is also an inspirational recipe book, and one that anyone who loves food will want to cook from, will need to cook from.
— Nigella Lawson
As a Palestinian who grew up in Jerusalem, I have been conditioned to be wary of any non-Palestinian trying to share our story and our culture with the world…Very quickly I found myself in tears at just how beautifully and accurately she has captured the essence of our Palestinian culture. Yasmin Khan you have done Palestinians and our story justice, your understanding of the nuances of our culture and history is unparalleled.
— Reem Kassis, author of The Palestinian Table
Part cookbook and part travel journal, this work is full of recipes, photos, and stories from Palestine. It is bright in flavour and colour and will teach you about this incredible nation through dishes like slow-cooked stews of chicken and lamb flavored with Palestinian barahat spice blends
A zingingly evocative collection of personal stories…Calling it a cookbook does it a disservice. Zaitoun deserves to be read as much as cooked from.
— Tim Lewis
Excellent…Khan’s cookbook is a thoroughly enjoyable exploration of the region’s food and culture.