Afghan Food and Cookery (North American edition)

Hippocrene Books, New York, 2000
(illustrated by Abdullah Breshna))

Situated at the crossroads of four major regions-the Middle East, Central Asia, the Indian subcontinent and the Far East-Afghanistan has survived centuries of invasions, whether military, cultural or culinary. Its hearty cuisine includes a tempting variety of offerings: lamb, pasta, chickpeas, rice pilafs, flat breads, kebabs, spinach, okra, lentils, yogurt, pastries and delicious teas, all flavored with delicate spices, are staple ingredients. This cookbook includes over 100 recipes, all adapted for the North American kitchen, for favorites like “Mantu” (Pasta filled with Meat and Onion), “Shinwari Kebab” (Lamb Chops Kebab), and “Qabili Pilau” (Yellow Rice with Carrots and Raisins). The author’s informative introduction describes traditional Afghan holidays, festivals and celebrations. Also included is a section entitled “The Afghan Kitchen,” which provides essentials about cooking utensils, spices, ingredients and methods. Complete with b/w maps and illustrations.

Glenn Mack’s review in Gastronomica:
I was impressed with Saberi’s folkloric approach to documenting every day foods … Her recipes read like cherished family heirlooms, not tarted up transmutations from some chic ethnic restaurant. … It provides a solid foundation for understanding Afghan cuisine in the context of geography, history and culture.

The first edition of Noshe Djan was translated into French and Italian. The second edition was translated into Dutch.