|For the aubergine mousse|
|2||Eggplants (Aubergines) (24 oz)|
|2||Lemons, raw (organic?) (8.5 oz)|
|2 tbsp||Tahini (1.1 oz)|
|1 dash||Salt (0.01 oz)|
|1 dash||Black pepper (0.00 oz)|
|1 clove||Garlic, raw, organic (0.11 oz)|
|1 oz||Parsley, fresh|
|¼||Pomegranate (2.5 oz)|
|1 tsp||Olive oil (0.16 oz)|
For the aubergine mousse
Wash and grill the aubergines, preferably over an open flame. This chars the skin and gives the dish its typical taste. If this isn’t possible, prick the aubergines several times with a knife and bake in the oven at 200 °C (400 °F or gas 6) until soft.
Halve the aubergines, carefully scrape out the flesh, and coarsely chop.
Squeeze the lemons and then add the lemon juice, tahini, salt, and pepper to the prepared aubergines.
The author uses the juice of 1–2 lemons for four servings.
Peel and crush the garlic, and finely chop the parsley. Add garlic and half of the chopped parsley to the aubergines and mix to make a creamy sauce.
Check the seasoning and add more, if necessary.
Sprinkle the remaining parsley and one handful of pomegranate seeds on top and drizzle with a little olive oil.
Warm khoubiz, a type of Lebanese bread, goes well with this dish.
The vegan recipe book "Vegan Middle East" offers recipes from the Middle East. Culinary delights from different culinary cultures for more enjoyment.
With Vegan Middle East, Parvin Razavi created a cooking book that contains easily prepared recipes, which most often can be made in a short time. While vegetables of all kind are the main ingredients, the variety of herbs and spices make the dishes so excitingly different from those vegan recipes we’re seeing so often.
About the authorBorn in Iran and emigrated to Austria, Parvin Razavi was influenced by her middle eastern family and fascinated by scents. She started experimenting with food at an early age. Today she is writing her food blog "thx4cooking", works as an editor for Biorama, a magazine for a sustainable lifestyle and offers her cooking in form of private catering commissions.
ContentsThis book starts with a foreword about the author. The glossary introduces typical middle eastern ingredients illustrated by colorful drawings.
The recipes are divided into six chapters by the country of origin:
Each chapter starts with a register of the dishes shown in this section.
In the middle east it is common, to serve several dishes at once, instead of serving one dish per meal only, called mezze. In Vegan Middle East the author adheres to this tradition with classical courses composed out of main courses, side dishes, hot drinks and desserts. In between she intersperses chosen ingredients such as artichokes and dates.
IranLight dishes with yogurt or citrus salad and pickled vegetable are among the recipes as well as soups and stews using lentils or beans and rice dishes combined with flavorful spices and herbs. You’ll find here for example "Broad bean stew with dill sauce" (Ackerbohneneintopf mit Dillsauce) and "Blanched spinach with soya yogurt".
Armenia"Chickpeas with spinach", "Mante (homemade dumplings) stuffed with squash” and “stuffed vine leaves” are recipes among the Armenian dishes.
Syria, Lebanon, JordanThis chapter includes mainly mezzes such as “Hummus, with curry”, “Aubergine mousse with tahini” (Auberginen-Mousse mit Tahini) and “Lebanese bread”.
EgyptApart from one, all recipes offered here are main courses. Lentils, beans, couscous, chickpeas and potatoes are the main ingredients found here. “Egyptian falafel”, “Stuffed tomatoes” and “white bean stew” are among those dishes.
MoroccoThis chapter contains dishes with lots of vegetables, like “Caramelized fennel with fennel seeds and barberries” and “Vegetable tagine with quince”, a stew containing courgette, using cumin and cinnamon as spices.
Turkey“Börek stuffed with swiss chard”, “Braised artichokes” and “Turkish semolina cake” are among the Turkish dishes.
Summary / overall impressionIn Vegan Recipes from the Middle East Parvin Razani provides the reader with a broad selection of flavorful dishes from different cultures which are mostly easy to prepare. The recipes are middle eastern classics but you’ll also find some tasty surprises. The author focuses on the use of fresh ecological and organic ingredients. In terms of soya only soya yogurt is used which, if wished, can be replaced easily by any other vegetable-based yogurt. Spices and herbs such as cumin, saffron, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom, dill and coriander are often used ingredients. Among the dishes desserts, which in the middle east often contain bigger amounts of sugar and oil, are reduced to a few only. The presentation of the book is clear, containing preparation- and cooking time, tips and beautiful pictures for all of the listed recipes. Background information about selected ingredients allows the reader to get a better understanding of the Middle Eastern culture.
An appealing cooking book for vegan and non-vegan people and for all who are curious experiencing something new.
Vegan recipes from the middle east gives vegan cooking a different direction and enables the reader to experience some new flavorful culinary delights.
The cooking book Vegan Recipes from the Middle East is published by Grub Street.
Book review by Dr. med. vet. Inke Weissenborn
Aubergine Mousse with Tahini, Parsley, and Pomegranate goes well with Lebanese bread and meze, which are appetizers often served with an apperitif.
Eggplants (aubergines): Eggplants, which are also known as aubergines, are a suptropical solanaceous plant species. There are a number of different types that vary in shape and color. The most common varieties in Europe and North America are oblong and have dark-violet to black color. The raw fruit can have a somewhat bitter taste, or even an astringent quality, but when cooked it becomes tender and develops a rich, complex flavor.
Pomegranates: Pomegranates are very nutritious; scientific studies show that they have positive benefits on cardiovascular health, cancer, and arthritis prevention. They are not only rich in vitamin C, iron, and phenols, but also stand out on account of their many health benefits. The seeds can be eaten raw.
Tahini: Tahini, also known as tahina, is a nutty tasting paste made from processed sesame seeds. Raw tahini, which uses soaked instead of roasted sesame seeds, is also available.
Parsley: Using fresh parsley is a great way to add flavor to your favorite dishes. Parsley is a good source of flavonoids, antioxidants, and vitamins, especially vitamins K, C, and A, and should be used as more than a garnish.
Choosing eggplants: Eggplants should be purchased when they are still fresh and firm. If stored too long, they can become soft and overripe. And be careful, the stems can have sharp spikes. After eggplants are cut open, they should be used quickly because they tend to turn brown. This is result of the oxidation of polyphenols.
Easy way to deseed pomegranates: It works best to cut the pomegranate in half and place in a bowl with cold water. Then use your fingers to release the seeds. They will immediately sink to the bottom of the bowl and the white pith will float to the top. This way you can easily remove the pith and strain out the pomegranate seeds. There are several YouTube videos that clearly explain and show how to use this method to deseed a pomegranate.
Additional flavor: You can add some coriander or mint to give the dish a different flavor.
Oil-free: For an oil-free variation, simply leave out the olive oil.