“‘Bilhana’ is an Arabic expression meaning ‘Bon Appetit!’, one that rings out in every Egyptian home. It sums up the Egyptian love of food and gathering to eat, of sharing meals with family and friends.”
—Authors Yasmine Elgharably and Shewekar Elgharably
While Middle Eastern cuisine is, by and large, inherently healthful, there is always room for improvement, innovation and adaptation. This creative cookbook of soups and salads, roasts and grills, seafood and sweets, and drinks and more, acknowledges and adopts many current dietary trends and methods. "swapping ... quinoa for rice." for instance. or "baking rather than frying" falafel while folding in classic flavors and spices. "from Lebanon to Morocco." Cauliflower rice (florets ground into bits), like quinoa, offers a gluten-free alternative to rice, dressed with olive oil, lime juice. garlic and parsley. Cardamom and mastic, a distinctive. resiny Arab ingredient "redolent of sunbaked hillsides." localizes a
. Old methods (smoldering charcoal in the oven for seasoned kofta) blend with hip, new flavors (hibiscus popsicles anyone?) in this tempting reimagining of a traditional cuisine.