Maman's Homesick Pie: A Persian Heart in an American Kitchen by Donia Bijan

By Donia Bijan

For Donia Bijan’s kinfolk, nutrition has been the language they use to inform their tales and to speak their love. In 1978, whilst the Islamic revolution in Iran threatened their safeguard, they fled to California’s Bay sector, the place the regular flavors of Bijan’s mother’s cooking shaped a bridge to the existence they left at the back of. Now, during the prism of foodstuff, award-winning chef Donia Bijan unwinds her personal tale, discovering that on the center of all of it is her mom, whose love and aid enabled Bijan to gain her dreams.

From the Persian global of her early life to the yank lifestyles she embraced as to her years at Le sous-chef in Paris (studying below the notorious Madame Brassart) to apprenticeships in France’s three-star kitchens and eventually again to San Francisco, the place she opened her personal celebrated bistro, Bijan conjures up a colourful kaleidoscope of cultures and cuisines. and she or he stocks thirty encouraged recipes from her youth (Saffron Yogurt Rice with chook and Eggplant and Orange Cardamom Cookies), her French education (Ratatouille with Black Olives and Fried Bread and red Plum Skillet Tart), and her cooking profession (Roast Duck Legs with Dates and hot Lentil Salad and Rose Petal Ice Cream).

An exhilarating, heartfelt memoir, Maman’s Homesick Pie can be a reminder of the ladies who motivate us to shine.

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Cover with plastic, setting it right on the guacamole to keep it green. Serve at room temperature. S E RV E S 6 starting off right: appetizers and snacks 23 CHARNEY_CH01_QXPtxt 2/24/04 10:29 PM Page 24 Toasted garlic and tomato bruschetta with olives and basil This recipe has some serious flavor. Bruschetta, a classic favorite, is usually made with raw tomatoes on toasted bread rubbed with garlic topped with fresh basil. I add a little punch to the mix with toasted garlic and olives. If stir-frying, remember to keep the heat fairly low, because extra virgin olive oil has a lower burning point than other more refined oils.

Number 2, practice layering flavors. Number 3, be versatile, depending on the ingredients available to you. What is stock? Stock is simply the essence that remains when you extract all the flavors from vegetables cooking in water. It’s what gives soup and other dishes cooked in it richness and what some chefs call integrity. Best of all, there’s nothing challenging about creating a stock. You simply bring basic vegetables and herbs to a boil, then simmer them gently for 45 minutes to an hour. It’s hard to go wrong making a vegetable stock.

Add about 1⁄3 package of rice noodles to a saucepan of boiling water. ) Remove from the heat and let stand for 1 minute, or until the noodles are soft. Drain and rinse in cold water until cooled. Drain again and set aside. 4. Fill a large, shallow bowl with cold water. Soak 1 sheet of rice paper at a time in the water for 1 to 2 minutes, or until soft. If the edges are still firm, use your fingertips to gently press the edges until they soften. Carefully lift out the rice paper and let drip for a few seconds over the bowl.

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