Middle Eastern food is very popular in England, a melting pot of cultural cuisines. But rather than always eat out (too expensive) or buy plastic-wrapped ready meals, why not just learn to make your favourite meals?
Never eat rice after 24 hours (a good poison hazard). Keep these recipes away from young children and pets due to unsafe ingredients like onion, garlic and strong spices. Before cooking, read up on food safety for people & pets.
Vegan Recipes from the Middle East is by Parvin Razavi, who offers recipes from Iran, Armenia, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco and Turkey. From a main course to traditional mezze, the recipes include spicy warm stuffed vegetables, cool fragrant soups, delicate preserves, pilafs, breads, pickles, relishes, pastries and rose-scented puddings.
Veganistan offers a plant-based tour of the Middle East from a renowned food writer. In response to requests at her Peckham restaurant, Sally Butcher offers lush flavours with recipes from a reassuring voice:
- Beetroot & sour cherry gazpacho
- Mushroom & chestnut borek
- Seitan kebabs
- Persepolitan sauerkraut
- Quince & cardamom trifle
the debate about Halal meat
Let’s address the elephant in the room. Halal (and Jewish) food is meat from animals that are not stunned, in compliance with religious law. Religious tolerance is one thing. But welfare experts at Compassion in World Farming say the animals do suffer, and want it banned. The law is also a mess. CIWF say that in fact, many meats sold as Halal are stunned (so not compliant anyway) and they want such meat only sold in certain stores, yet many supermarkets now sell it (and don’t label it) so people often unwittingly buy Halal meat, when they don’t want it.
Of course the solution is obvious. You can easily go plant-based whether you’re Muslim or Jewish. One Arab Vegan is one of the most popular recipe blogs, and its founder is a committed vegan – and Muslim. And Prince Khaled bin alwaleed is so passionate about the lifestyle, he now has invested heavily in the world’s biggest plant-based news website. Likewise, the best-selling vegan cookery writer on earth (Isa Chandra Moskowitz) is Jewish.