“Heine’s absorbing narrative triumphs totally with the inclusion of more than 70 recipes translated and scattered throughout the volume accompanying discussion of each dish that has been carefully selected from the medieval corpus. There are many feasts to be enjoyed from this volume, intellectually and gastronomically suited for all tastes.” – Professor David Waines
“This culinary history of the Middle East satisfies the elusive criteria of being all things to all people: broad in scope, yet detailed in discussion, and encyclopedic in its organization, but like a work of narrative nonfiction in its execution.” – Tom Verde, AramcoWorld
The Fertile Crescent region has long been regarded as pivotal to the rise of civilisation. Alongside the story of human development, innovation, and progress, there is a culinary tradition of equal richness and importance. The Culinary Crescent shows Heine’s deep knowledge of the cookery traditions of the Umayyad, Abbasid, Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal courts. In addition to a fascinating history, Heine presents more than seventy recipes—from the modest to the extravagant—with dishes ranging from those created by the celebrity chefs of the bygone Mughal era, up to gastronomically complex presentations of modern times. Beautifully produced, and designed for both reading and cooking, The Culinary Crescent is sure to provide a delectable window into the history of food in the Middle East.
Peter Heine taught at the University of Münster and Bonn and until 2009 was Professor for Islamic Studies at the Humboldt-University in Berlin.
Peter Lewis is the translator of such works as Roger Willemsen’s The Ends of the Earth and Johannes Fried’s Charlemagne.
Click here to read a review of The Culinary Crescent by Professor David Waines.
Click here to read a review of The Culinary Crescent in the Asian Review of Books.